Pray for Mexico!

Pray for Mexico!

Pray for Mexico!

This month, we are upholding the people of this nation in our prayers.

Mexico! So many Canadians love to visit Mexico, enjoying it vibrant culture, warm beaches, and incredible dining. Variety is the spice of life! From the mega-urban Mexico City to the southern mountains and forests, from the warm beaches to the dry regions, and from the Spanish traditions to tribal areas, Mexico presents endless faces. Besides Spanish, there are 190 tribal languages.

The sophisticated Aztec Empire in Central Mexico was destroyed by the Spanish in the 16th Century. Smallpox killed millions. Shortly following independence from Spain in 1821, much of northern Mexico was lost to the United States in 1848 under the terms of the treaty negotiated to bring an end to the Mexican-American war.  The year 1910 marked the beginning of the Mexican Revolution which in time gave birth to Mexico’s current constitution, signed in 1917. Today, there is a strong central government led by President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador. With a population of 126 million, Mexico has three and a half times Canada’s population.

The Constitution of 1857 helped put into effect a separation of church and state and today, Mexico is a secular state, guaranteeing freedom of religion.  Notwithstanding, evangelical Christians do face persecution in some parts of the nation.

The Catholic Church in Mexico, which dominated life for 300 years, is today split into many factions: historic conservatives, liberation theologians, charismatics, and syncretic “popular Catholicism.” The later include gods and goddesses of Amerindian spiritism. A large part of the Amerindian population, although baptized Roman Catholic, still adheres to pre-conquest religious practices.

Reasons for praise:

  1. There is a steady growth of evangelicals, from 2% in 1960 to close to 9% today.
  2. Increasing freedom for ministry grows. In past decades, a heavy Catholic presence clamped down on radio, television, church planting, discipleship, camping, youth activities, and schools.
  3. The Missions Movement in Mexico is growing, with an increasing number of Mexicans joining the international missionary force, especially in the Muslim world.
  4. Christian ministries today include Christian literature, recordings, Bible translations, church planting, children’s ministries, camping, and short-term trips.
  5. LAM missionaries in Mexico are John and Tracey Pieters, Gwen Rowe, and Florentina Diego Carceda.  Brock Martin is just beginning to prepare for an assignment with Avance in Mexico.

Reasons to intercede for Mexico:

  1. There is a constant search around this question: “What or who is a Mexican?” Pray that more and more people will find their real identity in the Saviour, not in culture or trying to address historical conflicts.
  2. With the United States forming the northern border, daily issues arise surrounding immigration, the drug traffic, corruption, and international commerce.  This influences law-enforcement, politics, immigration routes and labour issues, affecting millions. With Central American nations to the south, pressures increase as migrants search for a better life.
  3. The poor in Mexico suffer. In fact, the gap between the rich and poor is one of the highest, if not the highest, among all the OECD nations. Sixty percent struggle with poverty.
  4. Pray for the unevangelized Amerindian groups. They live in greater poverty, enjoy fewer human rights, and have greater difficulty obtaining employment.
  5. The massive drug trade holds more than 500,000 addicts in a life-threatening grip. Drug-related gangs bring about terrible death squads, for the cartels are ruthless.

(Information taken from Wikipedia, and Jason Mandryk, Operation World, 7th Edition, 2010)