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All articles in category Finland

December 2016
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From blasphemer to preacher

I was not brought up in a Christian home, although my mum and dad were in certain ways quite religious and members of the Russian Orthodox Church in Finland, where I was baptised as a baby. My mum and dad divorced when I was about seven years old, leaving me and my younger brother to be raised by my mum only. In my youth I was into different aspects of hip-hop culture. At a a later stage I was into reggae music and heavily influenced by the religious aspects of Rastafarianism. Religion without Christ At that point, I thought of myself as a righteous man...

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December 2016
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God’s perfect plan

For the first 18 years of my life, if anyone had asked me if I believed in God, my response would have been a firm, ‘No!’ I had no religious upbringing, having only attended a church a few times in my life. What I knew about Christianity, I had been taught at school and, to be honest, thought that it was a lot of rubbish and the Bible contradicted itself. In 2002, at 18 years old, I left my home town of Watford and went to Cardiff to university. It was here I met and became friends with Miriam, a Christian. We had several discussions...

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October 2016
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The progress of Christianity in Finland

As a Protestant Christian from Finland, I trace my spiritual heritage back to the Finnish Reformation, when the country turned from Roman Catholicism to Protestant Lutheranism. Although not a Lutheran myself, I am thankful for how God used this period to bless my home country with the Word of God in the Finnish language, although at the same time recognising that a large part of the Reformation was politically motivated. The questions that remain are, how was Finland introduced to Christianity in the first place; and is that period when Roman Catholicism ruled in Finland to be completely rejected as a time of darkness? Or...

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October 2016
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The Republic of Finland

Finland gained independence from Russia in 1917. During World War II, it defended its independence through cooperation with Germany and resisted subsequent invasions by the Soviet Union. In the late twentieth century, Finland transformed from a farm/forest economy to a diversified industrial economy. It has been a member of the EU since 1995. Neighbours: Norway, Sweden, Russia. Climate: Cold temperate; but comparatively mild because of the North Atlantic Current, Baltic Sea and more than 60,000 lakes. Ethnic groups: Finn 93.4, Swede 5.6, Russian 0.5, others 0.5 per cent. Religions: Lutheran 74, Orthodox 1, others 25 per cent. Population: 5.5 million, but aging. Capital: Helsinki 1.2 million....

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October 2016
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Finishing the Finnish Reformation

Being an international seminary student in America, and studying the Protestant Reformation in Germany, as well as more recent church history in England and America, made me realise how little I know about the Reformation in my own country of Finland. This led me on a quest to study my own Reformation heritage and learn how it applies to the current spiritual situation in Finland. It needs to be noted that many history books include the Finnish Reformation under the heading of Sweden, since Finland was ruled by Sweden from the thirteenth century until 1809. In many ways the Finnish Reformation did follow the pattern...

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