Area: 267,667 sq km
Coastal, Central African state on the equator, two-thirds being dense tropical rainforest and 10% being nature reserves.
Population: 1,501,266 Annual Growth: 1.86%
Official language: French Languages: 43 All languages
Largest Religion: Christian
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Peoples of the interior long unreached and even previously out of bounds for evangelical missionaries are opening to the gospel. Research in the late 1990s identified the unengaged and least-reached peoples, and Christians are beginning to plant churches among them. Included in these are the Baka people, Gabons earliest inhabitants, who are proving quite responsive to outreach.
Spiritist beliefs and practices (such as Bwiti syncretism) are widely observed and deeply pervasive in much of Catholicism, other Christian groups and Islam. This continues to cause many to fall back on fetishes, hallucinogenic drugs, ancestral spirits and dependence on the medicine men who have held them in bondage for generations. Secret societies are common; many government elite, police officers and members of the army participate in often-bloody nighttime rituals including witchcraft and black magic. Christians who refuse to participate in these harmless clubs can be refused academic or professional advancement.
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 Gabon.