Area: 110,861 sq km
The largest island in the Caribbean.
Population: 11,204,351 Annual Growth: 0.02%
Official language: Spanish Languages: 4 All languages
Largest Religion: Christian
|Religion||Pop %||Ann Gr|
Persecution of Christians, more severe in the past, continues in the form of harassment and discrimination including occasional imprisonment of leaders. A seven-year sentence handed down to an evangelical pastor was the harshest thus far. Following Jesus remains a sacrificial choice while the regime fears the Church as a social movement like that which undermined Communism in Eastern Europe and China. Pray for continued courage and perseverance for suffering believers.
a) The government has tried to strangle Christian growth by making it nearly impossible economically to build new churches; the resulting house church movement has proved even more fruitful!
b) Disunity plagues the Cuban Church. While government attempts to reign in the house churches yielded some greater unity across groups, cross-denominational cooperation and ministry remain difficult. Historical infiltration by informers yielded more stringent membership and baptism criteria, in turn generating more committed and mature members; however, it has simultaneously produced a destructive climate of distrust and suspicion.
Leadership for the churches remains an urgent need. Many fled or were expelled following the revolution. Praise God for those who stood firm and were trained in the school of suffering; many are weary from long years of service and need fresh vision. Cuba has a dozen evangelical and two Catholic Bible schools or seminaries. Student numbers are limited by government interference and a lack of both material and human resources. TEE programmes, itinerant and visiting intensive training modules and hand-couriered laptops crammed with Bible resources are creative ways of addressing this challenge. Pray for a multiplication of visionary leadership for the churches that enables them to cope with the growth and change.
For an additional 7 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 Cuba.