The idea of mission in Finnish clerical Lutheranism during the Continuation War 1941 1944
Tilli, J. (2014). The idea of mission in Finnish clerical Lutheranism during the Continuation War 1941–1944. Nations and nationalism, 20 (4), 782-800. doi:10.1111/nana.12072
Published inNations and nationalism
© The author(s) 2014. Nations and Nationalism © ASEN/John Wiley & Sons Ltd 2014.
ABSTRACT. On 25 June 1941 Finland embarked on a war against the Soviet Union, as part of Germany’s Operation Barbarossa. The war that was about to begin could be considered acceptable and even advantageous politically. However, theologically this was not necessarily the case. The topic of the article is how the war between the states of Finland and the Soviet Union could be justified publicly in relation to a religion whose core message is not to kill, to turn the other cheek to – and even love – the enemy. Due to the close and long-lasting relationship between the state, the army and the established church, Lutheran priests had a significant role in the war effort. The analysis shows that the answer provided by Finnish Lutheran priests to the question drew significantly upon two versions of missionary thought, the national mission and the world-historical one. The empirical material consists of articles, speeches, sermons and statements.
PublisherWiley-Blackwell Publishing Ltd.; Association for the Study of Ethnicity and Nationalism