Pray for Our World: Morocco

Ancient Moroccan tanneries

Morocco is in the northwest corner of Africa.  Sunni Islam is the state religion, and the existence of Christians and Jews are tolerated but not accepted (prejudiced).  Arab armies invaded Morocco in the seventh century and Islam took over at that time.  The once-strong North African Church was erased.  Today, Christians are still persecuted and expelled from the country.  There are less than one percent Christians and Jews, and even less than that are Evangelical (about .01%).  The internet is beginning to change their access to other worldviews, as significant numbers search for the gospel online, and the Jesus film is also distributed in Arabic.

Pray for Our World: Montenegro

Montenegro is a coastal Adriatic state that is small, but mountainous and picturesque.  With its beautiful coastline, it is Europe’s fastest growing tourist industry.  It was recognized as a state as early as 1077 and became part of Yugoslavia in 1918, and separated in 2006.  With their independence, it has brought optimism and hope.  If they can avoid the ethnic/religious difficulties that plague most of the other Balkans, then they will have a chance to succeed.  Seventy-five percent of the population is Orthodox, but the Orthodox Church has many disagreements between Serbian Orthodox and Montenegrin Orthodox.  Evangelicals have been growing, as we’ve seen in many other non-western countries as well.  Foreign missions is also just beginning in Montenegro.  Pray that the missions and the churches will unite and spread the Good News to the people of Montenegro.

Pray for Our World: Mongolia

Mongolia is a country squeezed in the middle, with China to the south and Russia to the north.  It is subject to extreme climates.  Mongolia was unified as a nation in 1206 under Genghis Khan, and became the greatest land empire ever known.  It was foreign dominated from 1368 to 1911, then Russia installed a Marxist government in 1921.  After the fall of USSR, Mongolia has struggled with poverty and finding employment, and many have moved abroad.

While it seems sad to see the changes governments have imposed over hundreds and thousands of years, God seems to be working quietly behind the scenes in many of these countries at this time.  Many changes have taken place over the last 50-100 years around the world that we have not been seen before.  In 1989, there were only four Mongolian Christians.  Today, there are over 40,000 believers in hundreds of churches and groups, meeting in most parts of the country.  The greatest challenge for the churches and missionaries to this part of the world is that they must shed their foreign-ness and become truly Mongolian and yet still remain Biblically centered.  Jesus came for all people, and His message is for all people, and we must not try to westernize Christianity and force others to fit that mold.  Jesus’ message of belief and repentance is not culture-specific.  It is only our rituals that are culture-specific.

Pray for Our World: Monaco

Monaco is the second smallest state in the world, with an area of 2 sq km.  Used as a byword for a very high standard of living, most revenue comes from tourism, gambling, and a tax haven.  The prince of this state has been from the house of Grimaldi since 1297.  The religious culture is Catholic, but the real culture of Monaco is materialistic hedonism.  It sounds similar to Las Vegas in the US.  There are over 160 nationalities there with most being expats.  Pray that the small number of Christian evangelicals that are there will find a culturally appropriate way to witness in a country where it is regarded as socially unacceptable.

Pray for Our World: Micronesia

Micronesia is a UN Trust Territory that is overseen by the United States.  It is a sub-region of Oceania (Australian continent) composed of thousands of small islands in the western Pacific Ocean.  There are four main states: Marshall Islands, Northern Marianas, Palau, and Moldova.

These are isolated islands where their only source of income is tourism and agriculture, and therefore they rely heavily on US aid.  Most of the people are Protestant and Evangelical, but there are strong ties to magic from their ancestral culture.  Transportation is a problem, along with unemployment and alcohol abuse.  This causes many to seek work abroad, but this comes with risk of exploitation.  Moldova has the largest numbers of young women lured abroad into human trafficking.

The Salvation Army (a US based ministry to the poor) is very involved there with assisting the people.  Organizations like The Salvation Army and The Gideons quietly do so much good around the world.  Christianity often gets bad press, especially here in the US, but most people are unaware of all the charity and good work that has been done and continues to be done in the name of Christ all over the world.  Evil is still strong in the world, but I shudder to think of what the world would be like without Christ.