This paper draws upon one year of fieldwork among the Eritrean and Ethiopian Pentecostals in Rome (Italy), though here I will focus mainly on one Eritrean church. Here I will discuss the relationship between this church and the recent history of Eritrea, which is characterized by a nationalist struggle against Ethiopia and strong involvement of the diaspora in a special kind of long-distance nationalism. I would like to show, in the ethnographical section of this paper, that this church represents a place in which, on the one hand, Eritreans try to define themselves beyond political issues, and, on the other hand, that in which new and old hostile relationships between groups are framed through religious language. I will stress practices and discourses through which followers of the church negotiate their past identities. The purpose of this article is to stress the various ways in which the discourse about personality, society and past, is elaborated in this particular Eritrean Pentecostal church, underlining flexibility and local expressions of spiritual ideas.
"ByesusSh'm".Breaking with the National Past in Eritrean and Ethiopian Pentecostal Churches in Rome / Costantini, O. - (2016), pp. 131-154.