Spiritual Baptists believe in God, Jesus Christ, and baptism by immersion and in the fundamentalist concepts of the inenrancy of the Bible, the authenticity of Biblical miracles, and possession by the Holy Spirit (14).
It is syncretic Afro-American religion that combines elements of the different traditional African religion brought by the enslaved populations combined with Christianity. Spiritual Baptists consider themselves to be Christians.
Members of the Spiritual Baptist Church in the West Indies engage in a ceremony called ” mourning ,” which involves prayer , fasting, and the experiencing of dreams and visions while in isolation.
Unlike Roman Catholicism, which is an ethnically diverse religion, the Yoruba Orisha Baptist denomination is a uniquely Caribbean syncretic religion, originated in Trinidad/Tobago, that combines Protestant, Catholic, African and Kabbalistic elements into their worship, but self-identifies as Protestant (Schmidt 43).
Baptists believe that when they worship through praise and prayer they are offering themselves to God in thanks for his love. God and his people speak with each other through worship . It is seen as a dialogue and worship is non-liturgical .
For Southern Baptists , the practice, also known as glossolalia, ended after the death of Jesus’ apostles. The ban on speaking in tongues became a way to distinguish the denomination from others. These days, it can no longer afford that distinction.
Republic of Trinidad and Tobago
The Spiritual Baptists believe that their religion comes from John the Baptist and their name from the practice of immersing their practitioners in water as a means of baptizing them into the faith (Henry 36-39). Rituals are characterized by bell ringing, mourning, shouting and visits from the Holy Spirit.
From the time of the first English translations of Yorùbá words in the mid nineteenth century, Èṣù has been rendered as ” devil ” or ” satan “. The first known instance of this came from Samuel Ajayi Crowther’s “Vocabulary of the Yoruba” (1842) where his entries for ” Satan ” and ” Devil ” had Eshu in English.
Another common initiation is the intitiation into the Seven African Powers (Elegua, Obatala, Oggun, Chango, Yemaya, Oshun, and Orunmilla).