Pray for Our World: Suriname

Suriname is a diverse country in northeast coast of South America. It is made up of Asians, Creole, Maroon, Amerindian, with a mix of Christian, Hindu and Muslim. Most Christians are protestant. The Church has grown significantly among the Maroon peoples and the Amerindians, with teaching and support focusing on family and society, youth, and prayer movements. Pray that the Christian support and teaching will multiply positively for all people of Suriname.

Pray for Our World: Peru

Peru is on the western coast of South America.  They are primarily known for coffee as their economy staple.  We thank them for that!  But there is also large corruption, taxation and inequality, and cocaine production.  Over 50% live in poverty and nearly 20% in extreme poverty.  They have religious freedom but the Catholic Church is the officially recognized state church and receives preferential treatment.  This was used in the past to discriminate against non-Catholics in taxes, property, education and politics.

The Catholic church is in crisis there, with as little as 5% attending church.  The evangelical movement has grown dramatically since the 1960’s and they are now engaged in social and political issues, a force for positive change and involved in bringing the fullness of the gospel to all peoples in Peru.  Many indigenous peoples have embraced Christianity, and the Bible translations and literacy work of the missionaries have played a significant part in this.  Continue to pray for the people of Peru, the missionaries, and the church.

Pray for Our World: Paraguay

 

Paraguay is a land-locked nation between Brazil, Argentina and Bolivia.  It is one of the most homogenous populations of South America, with 90% being of Spanish and Guaranf descent.  One percent of the population owns 77% of the land, which creates widespread poverty and a subclass of landless peasant farmers.

There is complete separation of church and state, but the Catholic Church still wields a lot of political and social influence.  The Roman Catholic Church dominates much of the lives of the people, with much of it steeped in superstition, devotion to Mary and occult-related pre-Christian deities and customs.  The Catholic Church actively opposes any evangelism.  As a result, the idea of Christianity is often distorted.  Please pray for the people, for missionaries, and for the church to break these strongholds and lead the way in spiritual truth.

Pray for Our World: Guyana

Guyana is on the north coast of South America.  It was in Dutch and British rule until its independence in 1966.  The 1960’s seemed to mark its change on the world as many smaller countries were gaining their independence from Europe around this time.  Guyana was in Marxist rule after that until the 1990’s, another similar statistic around the world for that time period, and now it struggles with poverty, living standards and education after the devastation left by Marxism.  Atheism too was promoted until 1985, with considerable tension between the government and churches.  Racial tensions also continue as there are influences from Venezuela to the west and Suriname to the east.

There have been positive movements toward Christianity in Guyana in recent years, but at the same time, Islam is becoming quite influential.  Pray that the people will have the freedom and access to the life-changing truth of Jesus Christ in order to heal their country.

Pray for Our World: Guatemala

Guatemala is located between southern Mexico and Honduras.  Just a few days ago, a 5.2 magnitude earthquake shook off the coast of Guatemala after the catastrophic devastation of the Fuego volcano erupted, the most active volcano in Central America, killing 38 people and leaving many others missing.  In addition to the country being susceptible to earthquakes, it is a major transshipment point for the drug trade, and 70% of the cocaine bound for the US goes through Guatemala.  Murder and violence are common there, and they have the highest murder rate in Latin America. Most of the people live below the poverty line, and are oppressed.

Growth of missionaries and evangelical churches have increased over the years due to freedom of religion.  The Catholic church is predominantly syncretized Christo-pagans, where their traditional Mayan gods become Catholic “saints”.  This has been a challenge to the missionaries, especially those from an American background.  However, the committed Catholics along with evangelicals have joined together to help fight the social problems of street children, substance abuse, homelessness and illiteracy.  Evangelism has occurred by city crusades, Christian schools and institutions, and Christian television, radio, magazines and newspapers.

Pray for the churches, the missionaries, and the people of Guatemala, that they will receive the help they need to have a more abundant life – both physically and spiritually.