Each month we focus on a different country and pray for them specifically. This month Finland is our country focus.
Some key statistics about Finland* are:
Population: 5.6 million
Official Language: Finnish and Swedish (with English)
Major Religion: Lutheran Church of Finland
Life Expectancy: 80.9 years
Politics: Stable multiparty democracy
Literacy Rate: 100%
Finland, which gained its independence from Russia in 1917, has recently been declared the worlds happiest nation. Finland ranks high in terms of education, civil liberties and stability and its church has traditionally sent out numerous missionaries. However, despite this the church unity is only just holding due to an aging membership which is becoming increasingly divided between the young and old. Additionally, only around 12% of the Lutheran churches are evangelical with liberalism taking over elsewhere, making sound teaching even more vital.
Points of Prayer:
- For churches to reach out into the former Soviet Union, especially the Finno-Ugric peoples.
- The bridging of the generation gap within the church and respect between the two
- For the good use of political and economic stability to benefit the less fortunate in Finland and elsewhere.
- For churches to continue to send out missionaries but to also be more involved in the process as the centralisation of missions has left many disconnected.
- Conviction for “church hoppers” to settle in a church and serve.
- The ministry amongst the young people is still strategic and fruitful. Pray for work amongst the university campuses and in children’s work and that the rising generations receive sound teaching.
- For the immigrant population who are mostly Christian as they bring an additional dynamic to the church.
- For culturally relevant ministry work amongst the Saami people of Lapland who are Europe’s last nomadic people group.
- For the discipling of men in particular. There is a culture of privacy and passivity, pray for accountability and a readiness to be pastored.
(*all statistics and information is accurate up to publication date)
Posted in Country Focus on Dec 26, 2019