Parousia Catholicism

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Parousia Catholicism, known in Portuguese as Catolicismo Parúsia, is a movement emerging out of Roman Catholicism that originated in Brazil in the early 20th century. It is classified as both a Christian denomination and a new religious movement by scholars. It's adherents are distinguished by their central claim that the Brazillian preacher and mystic Antônio Vicente Mendes Maciel, commonly known as Antônio Conselheiro, was the Second Coming of Christ, and that he ascended to heaven in 1910 on a pilgrimage to Jerusalem. It was founded by Brazilian political leader Joao Abade, who, on return to the city of Belo Monte, claimed the divinity of Conselheiro.

Following the abolition of slavery in Brazil, Antônio Conselheiro began to preach to freed slaves and indigenous Brazilians of the need to establish a utopia on Earth, swearing total allegiance to the monarchy of Brazil and the Catholic Church. At the start of the reign of Isabel, the Paolish Isles were entirely inhabited by the native Baoh people, following the abandonment of British settlement after the transfer of the islands back to Brazil. Originally, Conselheiro was based in the town of Canudos, Bahia. Due to violent backlash for his teachings by the landed elite, Conselheiro initiated a mass migration to the Isles in 1897, following a prior mission in 1890 where he established contact with the Baoh and learned their language. He established the city of Belo Monte in the Isles in 1903. In 1909, he departed to the Mutasarrifate of Jerusalem along with Abade, only to disappear after visiting the cities of Nazareth, Bethlehem, and Jerusalem.

Much practices of Parousia Catholicism are in-line with that of the wider Roman Catholic church, such as the observance of Mass, veneration of saints, and opposition to abortion. However, they differ in being more socially progressive in areas of economics, gender, and sexuality. Parouisa Catholics practice Portuguese as their primary liturgical language, as well as Arabic due to Conselheiro's devotion to the plight of Arab Christians in the Holy Land.

Parousia Catholicism has approximately 7.2 million adherents worldwide. It has had a complex relationship with the Roman Catholic Church, with the archdiocese of the Paolish Isles always asserting full communion with the papacy despite open rejection of its doctrines by Rome. 5.6 million Parousia Catholics reside in Brazil. The largest Parousia Catholic community outside of Brazil is the United States, with over 180,000 American members. Smaller populations exist in the the rest of Latin America, China, Lebanon, and Palestine. The church has recently experienced some growth in Korea and Portugal.