Area: 1,958,201 sq km
Latin America’s third largest country. Wide range of topography and rainfall ranging from arid northern plateau, central volcanic plateau and the southern mountains and rain forests. Only 10% of the country is arable.
Population: 110,645,154 Annual Growth: 0.99%
Capital: Mexico City
Official language: Spanish; the world’s largest Spanish-speaking nation Languages: 297 All languages
Largest Religion: Christian
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Persecution of evangelicals occurs in certain parts of Mexico. In general, acceptance of Protestants is higher in recent years as their profile increases. But in the southern states, particularly Chiapas, Oaxaca and Guerrero, believers face prejudice, harassment, evictions and church and property damage. This mostly occurs due to believers refusal to participate in community religious events that involve traditional Christo-pagan practices. Pray that the believers may demonstrate the meekness and love of their Saviour when maltreated. Pray also for full implementation of religious freedom at both national and local levels.
Ministry to young people is vital. Around one-third of Mexicans are aged 15 or younger. Due to its focus on youth ministry, the evangelical faith has made great inroads among young people in Mexico. This staggering challenge is being only partially met.
a) University students number over 2.5 million in nearly 10,000 campus locations. Outreach is yielding exciting results. Pray for the wide-ranging ministries of CCCI (on campuses and among churches). IFES-linked student movement Compañerismo Estudiantil A C (Compa) has 170 groups in 50 universities with 1,500 students served by seven full-time and 11 part-time staff and 16 volunteers. A number of Mexican-originated movements are also rapidly growing.
b) Young people. Although evangelical churches appeal to the younger generation, too few churches target them; most programmes use the approaches of previous generations. Pray for creative and cutting-edge ministry to todays youth.
c) Street children, especially in Mexico City. There may be up to 800,000 homeless or street children. They sleep in whatever shelter they can find and desperately need love and help.
d) Child labourers. As many as 11 million Mexicans under the age of 15 work. The income may be crucial to their poverty-stricken families, but many of these children drop out of school in order to work.
For an additional 10 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 Mexico.