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Protesting Poverty: Protestants, Social Ethics, and the Poor in Brazil (Paperback)
At a time when Latin American Protestantism has increasingly become a force to be reckoned with in the public realm and has attracted growing scholarly interest, this book contributes to the understanding of the sociopolitical relevance of the Protestant presence in Brazilian history and society. Raimundo Barreto argues that progressive Evang licx Christianity, a branch of Brazilian Christianity that combines charismatic spirituality and sociopolitical progressive action, offers valuable sources for Christian social ethics in contemporary Brazil.
Drawing on the typology proposed by Jos M guez Bonino in his Faces of Latin American Protestantism (1993), which examined the Latin American Protestant field through the analogy of fundamental "faces," Protesting Poverty interrogates three Protestant faces--ecumenical, evangelical, and Pentecostal--in the Brazilian context as well as their respective responses to realities of suffering, injustice, and oppression. The common thread of the argument is the search for a Brazilian Protestant social ethics, a progressive Christian sociopolitical praxis in a Protestant key. A spirituality that combines key elements of these three ethical responses is at the root of a theological ethics capable of promoting substantive social transformation that impacts both the individual and society at large.
The interrogation of the three specific Protestant responses to the plight of the poor is thus presented as a map toward a Christian social ethics that can effectively respond to the demands of justice. Barreto adopts an inductive approach that seeks to learn from these specific Brazilian Protestant "faces" to advance what Orlando Espin has called "universally relevant truth claims." At a time when ecumenical relations are being relocated and reinvented to address the conflicts and demands of a new era, this sociohistorical study points to new ecumenical possibilities.
About the Author
Raimundo C. Barreto is Associate Professor of World Christianity at Princeton Theological Seminary.