Pentecostal/Filadelfia Church
(Sweden)
   Pentecostalism came to Sweden in 1907 from Norway, and the first church was formed in 1913. It grew significantly, and by the end of the 20th century had become the largest Free Church movement in the country, with more than 90,000 members. Somewhat unique within the Pentecostal world, Swedish Pentecostalism developed as an ultra-congregational movement with none of the organizational structure generally associated with denominational life. Missionary programs, educational efforts, social services, and communication are all handled by organizations owned jointly by the several Pentecostal congregations. These organizations include the International Broadcasting Association, which supports IBRA Radio, an extensive international network of Christian radio stations; the International Center of the Pentecostal Mission, which prints and distributes Bibles and other Christian literature in different languages; PMU Interlife, a social service agency; and four schools that provide secondary and some college education.
   The Swedish Pentecostal churches support missions around the world. The first missionaries, Samuel and Lina Nystrom, arrived in Brazil in 1916. Today, some 400 missionaries serve worldwide in more than 50 countries.
   Further reading:
   ■ Lauri Ahonen with J. E. Johannes-son, "Sweden," in Stanley M. Burgess and Eduard M. Van der Maas, eds. International Dictionary of Pentecostal Charismatic Movements (rev. ed., Grand Rapids, Mich.: Zondervan, 2000).

Encyclopedia of Protestantism. . 2005.

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