February 15 - Pray for: Angola

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Forty years of almost constant war (1962-2002) devastated Angola. Innocent civilians suffered most. Fighting destroyed roads, schools, hospitals, homes, and churches. Millions fled their homes. Land mines crippled over 80,000 people. 70-90% of the population live in poverty. Spiralling cost of living in the capital city (due to oil money) is in deep contrast to the deep poverty of most rural areas, and the gap between the rich and poor gets wider and wider. Deep psychological, social, and spiritual wounds will require years to overcome. Praise God for peace, and the return of many to their homes. The Church helps lead the way to reconciliation as the country works to rebuild. Pray that Christians might also help lead the way in developing the country, alleviating poverty, healing trauma, and reconciliation.


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Luanda and other major cities attracted the displaced but had no capacity to shelter them properly, so squalid squatter camps rapidly sprung up. A large proportion of the rural population fled to urban areas due to food shortages and lack of security. The government is accused of failing to care for these unwilling refugees. There are large numbers of orphaned and abandoned children; many are falsely accused of witchcraft by relatives as a pretext for getting rid of them. Others are forced or sold into prostitution to feed themselves. Pray for those working with the urban poor and the children at risk.

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The challenge to biblical faith is great. Explosive growth is worthless if the Church is permeated with false beliefs and ignorance of the Bible. Witchcraft and animistic practices continue to infiltrate and pollute many churches and lives. Islam's assertiveness, simple message and financial backing cause it to grow. Those who claim to follow Christ need to be taught what such a claim truly means.

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Young people and children. Their numbers dominate Angola's population, despite the huge odds stacked against them. In 2006, the mortality rate for children under age five was 26%, and 45% of that same group suffered chronic malnutrition. The legacy of Marxism and war is a generation burdened with many scars and deprived of educational opportunity and physical security. Most of Angola's Christians are under age 25; ministry focused on them must occur for the sake of the Church's future. Pray for:

  • Primary and secondary schools to be rebuilt, well staffed and full. This generation is the first in a long time to know peace; pray that solid education might bring hope for the future.
  • Ministry to students. Pray for the impact of Scripture Union, CEF, IFES and other such groups in schools once hostile to Christianity.
  • Churches to increase their vision for evangelizing and discipling children and young people. OM, YWAM, AIM and the Brethren are just a few of many working in this capacity.

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Content taken or adapted from Operation World, 7th Edition (2010) and Pray for the World (2015). Both books are published by InterVarsity Press. All rights reserved.