Area: 51,100 sq km
Agriculturally and ecologically rich land that straddles the Central American isthmus.
Population: 4,639,827 Annual Growth: 1.40%
Capital: San José
Official language: Spanish. English and Mekitelyu spoken on Caribbean coast Languages: 13 All languages
Largest Religion: Christian
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a) Amerindian tribes are small in number, but each is culturally unique and special to God. Most are nominally Catholic or animist. There is, however, an active indigenous Church among the Cabécar, and evangelical missionary input to the Boruca, Bribri, Guaymi and Maleku. The Bribri have a NT after nearly 100 years of translation work! Pray that these peoples might see truly indigenous biblical churches planted and thriving, and using their mother tongues.
b) The Chinese population is increasing rapidly, with many Chinese immigrating from Taiwan and mainland China. Some have become Catholic, and there are now some growing evangelical fellowships. The Chinese Christian Mission started a work among them in 1985. Pray that workers would be raised up from both Costa Rica and the global Chinese diaspora to reach these people.
c) The Mekitelyu African Caribbean community on the Caribbean coast is nominally Protestant, but few people have a vital, life-affecting faith in Christ. Pray for revival within these churches and for the more dynamic Costa Rican churches to reach out to these people.
d) Asian immigrants are relatively small in number but increasing. They are mainly Arab, Iranian and South Asian, and are Muslim as well as Hindu.
e) English speakers may number more than 100,000 and are usually affluent and unconnected to any local church. Pray for ministry geared specifically toward them.
Ministry to young people is essential, given that two-thirds of Costa Ricans are under age 30. As with many other nations, alcoholism, drug addiction, violence and immorality plague this generation. Christian student and youth ministry has been weak in the past, but vision is growing and ministry increasing. ECU(IFES) in 17 universities and 17 colleges, Alfa y Omega (CCCI), Maranatha (a Pentecostal student work) and others are very active. On the Street of Bitterness, located near the national university, there exist both many social problems and sustained outreach.
For an additional 6 Challenges for Prayer see Operation World book, CD-ROM, or DVD-ROM.
The Operation World book, CD-ROM, and DVD-ROM provide far more information and fuel for prayer for the people of Costa Rica.