Dear Prayer Warriors, to introduce himself to them, he Apostle Paul wrote a letter to the Christians in Rome from the city of Corinth in Greece. With over 1 million inhabitants, Rome was the center of one of the greatest empires the world has ever known.
“7 To all in Rome who are loved by God and called to be his holy people:
Grace and peace to you from God our Father and from the Lord Jesus Christ.
8 First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for all of you, because your faith is being reported all over the world. 9 God, whom I serve in my spirit in preaching the gospel of his Son, is my witness how constantly I remember you 10 in my prayers at all times; and I pray that now at last by God’s will the way may be opened for me to come to you.” Romans 1:7-10
Italy is home to some of the world’s most famous historical treasures including the Colosseum, the Leaning Tower of Pisa, and the Roman Forum. Central to the Renaissance, Italy is the birthplace of Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo, and Raphael. This nation has had an immeasurable and global impact on art, music, and literature, and is often known for its architecture, fashion, and cuisine. Classical villas, the Mediterranean coast, and the northern Alps are just glimpse of the breathtaking beauty that draws millions of tourists every year.
Though Italy has the seventh-largest economy in the world, it is struggling to grow. Both restrictive legislation for businesses and organized crime have contributed to the country’s overwhelming debt (the third largest in the world). Once the seat of the Roman Empire, one of history’s greatest superpowers, today Italy faces many social and economic challenges. Roughly 39% of youth are unemployed, causing many to leave the country in search of greater opportunities. Thirty percent live in poverty; massive debt inhibits the government from properly addressing the issue. Despite the RICO operation in the 1990s that aimed to crackdown on corruption, organized crime still reaches into every strata of social and governmental life. The recent immigration crisis has also brought thousands of refugees from war-torn places such as Syria and Libya to their shores, leading Italy to threaten closing its ports.
This nation has a rich history of faith. The Book of Romans was written to the Church in Rome, which was the center of intense persecution for the early Church. Deeply rooted in Catholicism, it is home to the Vatican – the seat of the Catholic Church. Today, about 82% of the population claims Christianity (most are Roman Catholic). Yet only 15% of Italian Catholics faithfully practice their faith, with the majority seeing it as part of their cultural identity more than as a personal belief. Only about 1% of Italians are Evangelical Christian. Secular materialism, Occultism, and Satanism are gaining influence across the nation. Many regions remain without a strong evangelical church; out of 105 people groups, 24 remain unreached with the Gospel. A better understanding of God’s Word is needed in order to overcome the rampant spiritual indifference that now plagues this nation.
Continent: Europe – Capital City: Rome – Government: Republic – Population: 62,137,802 – Major People Groups: Italian – Religion: 80% Christian, Muslim, 20% agnostic – Language: Italian, German, French, Slovene – Literacy Rate: 99.2%
Dear Saints, I welcome you to join us on the call tonight to pray for the Nation and harvest of true believers in Italy.
• Pray for nominal Christians throughout Italy, that they would gain a true understanding of the gospel.
• Pray for Italians enslaved by tradition or disillusioned with church structures to encounter the living Christ.
• Pray for the power of God to be revealed and to set free those lost in the darkness of occult, pagan, and New Age practices.
We will also continue to pray for:
– Leah Sharibu and Alice that they will be set free from Boko Haram captivity.
– Pastor Wang Yi to be released from prison, for his family, the children, and the church in China
– To pray for Anita, an Iranian Christian, persecuted by the Islamic regime.
– For the release of Pastor Youcef Nadarkhani from Iran, and his family as their Persecution continues
– The Global Harvest for the Kingdom of God
In Christ Love
Nadia Dybvik, Persecution Watch Prayer Leader
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What is Persecution Watch?
Persecution Watch is a U.S. national prayer conference call ministry that prays specifically for the global Persecuted Church. For over a decade, Blaine Scogin led this national network of believers who faithfully pray for the persecuted and the global harvest for the Kingdom of God.
The group meets via a free call-in service every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday night at 9pm Eastern (please check your time zone). Blaine also served as Prayer Director for Voice of the Persecuted and our missions became one. The prayer mission of Persecution Watch is an important part of our own.
With the passing of Blaine into glory on December 26, 2019, Voice of the Persecuted is committed to continue the prayer conference call for the persecuted along with our dedicated prayer warrior team.
On occasion, persecuted brothers and sisters have been invited on the call to share the trials they’re facing. The team serves to encourage them by washing their feet in Spirit led prayer.
Time is often reserved for those on the call to ask questions. We believe this helps to gain a better understanding of the situation that persecuted Christians endure in their specific nations. Q&A also helps us to focus our prayers based on their current needs.
Persecution Watch also hosts callers who want to pray united from other nations. If your heart is perplexed by the sufferings of our persecuted brothers and sisters, you no longer need to pray alone. We welcome all who desire to pray for the persecuted church and consider it a joy to pray together with you.
If you’re new to the call and can’t find your voice, listen in and pray silently or on mute. We are grateful and thank the Lord for bringing us all together to pray in agreement for our persecuted family in Christ. We can all be prayer warriors on this call!
NOTE: Persecution Watch has a new email address for the prayer team and those who would like to receive urgent prayer requests, weekly call prayer points and notification of special prayer events and special guest speakers.
Please fill out the form below to be included in our new distribution list to receive this important information. We are grateful for your prayers and to the Lord for guiding us as we continue the Persecution Watch prayer call mission.
Note to Voice of the Persecuted (VOP) readers: The Persecution Watch prayer team is also the prayer team of Voice of the Persecuted. SIGN UP today.