- For those bound by ancestral worship to find freedom in Jesus Christ
- For healthy marriages and sexual purity to loosen the grip of HIV/AIDS over the nation
- For the purification of the Church from cultural sins
- For God’s Spirit to bring revival
- That the whole of Swaziland will turn to Jesus
- For Government leaders to submit to God
Southern Africa, between South Africa and Mozambique
1 320 256 (2017 est.)
Christian 90% (Zionist - a blend of Christianity and indigenous ancestral worship - 40%, Roman Catholic 20%, other 30% - includes Anglican, Methodist, Mormon, Jehovah's Witness)
Muslim 2%, other 8% (includes Baha'i, Buddhist, Hindu, indigenous religionist, Jewish) (2015 est.)
436 051 (2017)
LEAST REACHED PEOPLE GROUPS:
State-owned TV station; satellite dishes are able to access South African providers; state-owned radio network with 3 channels; 1 private radio station.
Population of city:
1.32% annual rate of change (2010-15 est.)
Major religion in city:
Father, we come before you on behalf of the nation of Swaziland. We pray for those who are bound by ancestral worship and the occult to find freedom in Jesus Christ. We also pray for healthy marriages and sexual purity to loosen the grip of HIV/AIDS over the nation. Lord, we ask that You will purify the Church from all cultural sins and beliefs that are not in line with Your truth. We pray for government leaders to make decisions that are in accordance with Your Word
Holy Spirit, we ask that You will bring revival to Swaziland. Please touch the lives of the youth, as many churches, even traditional evangelical groups, are stagnating and losing their young people. Lord, our prayer is that the whole of Swaziland will proclaim Jesus as the only Lord and Saviour. We pray in Jesus’ Almighty name. Amen.
State of the Church
In Algeria Christians make up only a tiny minority. And yet their exact numbers are difficult to establish. In the 4th Century Saint Augustine spoke of the prominence of a Church that numbered several hundred dioceses at the time, yet today the situation of all Christians is extremely precarious. Since 2006 there has been a law that punishes any form of evangelism and which covers the dissemination of religious writings, audiovisual media and any initiatives by Christians that “might undermine the faith of a Muslim”.
This law is in fact a reaction to the conversion of numerous Muslims to Christianity, against the background of the civil war of the 1990’s, which according to many estimates claimed up 250,000 lives, many Algerians turned away from Islam and embraced the evangelical movements. President Abd al-Aziz Bouteflika issued a decree in 2006 which effectively limited the religious freedom of non-Muslims. Ever since then, Christians have been subjected to constant harassment. Their gatherings are monitored and they are banned from any public religious practice, while restrictions have been placed on donations from abroad.
Unlike most countries in Africa, Swaziland is almost totally homogenous, meaning that most people are from the same culture. Having a country consisting out of people who share a common identity helps to provide some stability within the state. Economically they rely on South Africa who buys more than half of their export products. Swaziland also has one of the highest HIV and AIDS percentages in the world.
The Swati people have had great battles in the past, facing up against leaders like king Shaka in the early 1800’s. Many lives were lost against king Shaka’s men and the survivors had to flee to other regions. After returning to Swaziland they had their first contact with the British and Voortrekkers in the 1830’s, many of these Europeans were traders.
In the 1850’s missionaries together with Zulu agitators, helped the half brother of king Mswati II to stage a daring coup against the king. King Mswati II quickly went and allied himself with the British, who helped him to regain power over his territory. This alliance would later be costly for the Voortrekkers when war broke out between Britain and the Voortrekker territories.
Today Swaziland is one of the world’s last remaining monarchies. Opposition parties have been banned from the country. Royalists have argued that democracy creates division, and that a monarch is a unifying force.
There is an underlying tension between the people of Swaziland and the monarchy. Many of the people want the same freedom as neighbouring countries have. The Monarchy has tried to solve the problem by letting the people vote in headmen. These headmen almost serves as municipal leaders.
The people are also unhappy, as they believe that the king owns most of the sugar cane farms (Swaziland’s biggest export) and businesses. They feel left out of the economy.
The fact that the people are not heard by the monarchy cause some critics to label Swaziland as a country that may fall into civil unrest within the next 10 years if something is not done.
- INcontext ministries - http://incontextministries.org/
- CIA World Factbook
- Atlas of Global Christianity - Todd M.Johnson & Kenneth R. Ross (Published by - Edinburgh University Press) (Missionaries and national workers: Africa 2010, page 267)
- Prayercast - http://prayercast.com/
- Unreached people groups - http://www.joshuaproject.net
- The voice of the Martyrs - http://www.persecution.com/
- Jul-Dec, 2010 International Religious Freedom Report - http://www.state.gov/j/drl/rls/irf/2010_5/index.htm
- Operation World - http://www.operationworld.org/african-countries