The Gospel in Colombia

| January 20, 2015

Named after the Christopher Columbus, the Republic of Colombia is world renowned for its smooth coffee and supply of emeralds. Colombia borders five other nations, has a coastline on both the Pacific Ocean and Caribbean Sea, and boasts various celebrities ranging from author and Nobel Laureate Gabriel García Marquez to actress Sofía Vergara.

Like elsewhere in Latin America, Roman Catholicism has steadily declined in Colombia over the last 40 years. According to a recent Pew Forum study, nearly three-quarters of current Protestants in Colombia were raised Roman Catholic, and 84 percent say they were baptized in the Roman Catholic Church. In this same study the two dominant reasons given for the change were a desire for a “personal connection” with God and a new worship style.

The threat of kidnappings, even of American missionaries, remain a perennial concern in Colombia, even if fears have somewhat lessened. (As of this writing there are ongoing talks between the Colombian government and the leftist “Farc” rebels meeting in Havana, Cuba.) The U.S. embassy, for example, routinely issues advisories that American citizens could be targeted by guerilla groups. In the midst of these unique challenges, however, the evangelical church in Colombia…

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