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Prayercast | Portugal

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Published on Apr 21, 2011

Lush green forests drape the rugged mountainsides of Portugal, feeding the thriving logging and cork industries for which the country is known. Bound by a single language, the Portuguese people have retained their national unity and ethnic identity for thousands of years. As a predominantly Catholic country, Portugal is even further unified by the culturally embedded traditions and practices of the church.
Portugal still stands in the shadow of a 1974 coup that overthrew a corrupt government and established significant political and economic reforms. After several years of struggling to redevelop itself, economic growth improved in 1986 after joining the European Union and becoming a founding member of NATO. As the international market has slowed, Portugal has found it difficult to compete with Asia and Eastern Europe for foreign investments. Drug use has become prevalent, with half of all teenagers reportedly experimenting with illegal substances. The country is known as the bridge for shipping cocaine and hashish from Southeast Asia to Europe and North America. The Portuguese government is still struggling to pull its nation out of increasing debt and social depression.
Portugal is a financially and spiritually bankrupt nation. As late as the 16th century, the nation's power and wealth were almost unparalleled. Now, an overwhelming feeling that the best days are behind them has left the people with a heavy hopelessness. Though over 94% claim Christianity as their faith, few openly practice or evangelize. It is a stagnant belief based upon tradition and habit, not a living and growing relationship with the Lord. The Portuguese youth in particular are overlooked, and New Age ideals, Mormons, and Jehovah's Witnesses are beginning to take hold of those who do not know Christ. Portugal is in desperate need of a revival now more than ever as the people struggle with substance abuse and the fear of economic failure. God is bigger than the financial institutions of the world and stronger than drug addiction, and His provision will shine upon the Portuguese people.

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