Republic of Angola
Area: 1,246,700 sq km
Large coastal state on the South Atlantic coast. Cabinda is an oil-rich coastal enclave to the north of the Congo River.
Population: 18,992,707 Annual Growth: 2.71%
Official language: Portuguese Languages: 41 All languages
Largest Religion: Christian
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Challenges for Prayer
Forty years of almost constant war (1962-2002) have devastated Angola. Innocent civilians suffered the most – 90% of the casualties were civilians, millions were uprooted, their homes and churches destroyed and hunger was used as a bargaining chip in the power play for aid. One in 350 Angolans is a victim of landmines, 70-90% of the population live in poverty, and the length of roads destroyed or damaged amounts to nearly twice the circumference of the planet. Greater than the physical damage are the psychological, social and spiritual wounds, which will require years to overcome. Pray for:
a) Those seeking to alleviate physical suffering by clearing landmines and rebuilding infrastructure, homes, hospitals, schools and churches. The six million landmines are being cleared – but over 80,000 people have already been crippled by them. Early signs of progress are promising. Many agencies are involved, including WVI, Tearfund and several consortiums of churches and agencies such as Church Action in Angola.
b) Healing of the invisible wounds. Reconciliation is a painstaking process, and the sheer number of those hurting means that more counselling and training are long-term needs.
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.
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 Angola.