Saturday, February 25, 2012

Prayer for Austria: A 365 Day Global Prayer Journey - February 25 (Day 56)

First I want to welcome all the newcomers to this prayer group! We've had several this week, and since I've been recovering from a bug I haven't had a chance to welcome you all - but welcome and feel free to comment at any point!

Today and tomorrow our travels take us to Austria. Land-locked at the point between eastern and western Europe, Austria played a key role in 20th century history. The assassination of its archduke provided the trigger point for World War I; it was Hitler's birthplace; and it was one of Germany's early, pre-World War II conquests. Austria has tried to maintain formal neutrality in the years since the war ended, and yet it has remained a key player in European  politics and in the migration of peoples from eastern to western Europe.

Sadly, the numerous compromises made by the church to placate the Nazis have had a tremendous negative spiritual heritage on today's Austrians. Evangelicals in Austria have learned that while maintaining political neutrality is challenging and almost impossible, efforts at spiritual neutrality yield far more dangerous consequences. Their boldness is resulting in growth among evangelicals, even as the rest of the Austrian churches are in serious decline. As we pray for Austria today and tomorrow, let's give special attention to tearing down the strongholds of compromise and spiritual neutrality that go back almost a century.

Please read pages 123-126 on Austria, then return here and pray with this Austrian believer who leads us in prayer today.

No comments: