Thousands of teenagers in Latin America are committing to Christianity, becoming engaged with the Bible, and learning more about Jesus, according to a new poll. Recent research by the Barna Group reveals that Latin America is home to a “connected, digitally enabled generation” that is actively engaged with church and learning more about Jesus Christ. Last year, Barna surveyed more than 24,000 teens in 26 countries and compiled that data into its “The Open Generation Survey”. The goal of the international study is to help church leaders understand how to reach teens. According to Barna, the “open generation” admires Jesus for his compassion, forgiveness, and care of others. They also care about justice and are engaged in reading scripture. In particular, young people in Brazil, Honduras, Mexico, and Colombia showed a heightened awareness of Christ and the Bible. About 74 percent of Christian Brazilian teenagers said they believe Jesus offers people hope. Meanwhile, 60 percent said He makes a real difference in today’s world, and 70 percent believe Jesus will come back one day.
And just over half (55%) of Brazilian teenagers believe that Jesus was God in human form. “My friends comment that I became kinder and happier after I became a Christian and that they can see God in my life,” 14-year-old Lavínia Fernandes told Christianity Today. According to the Economist, evangelical Christianity is growing quickly in the region and could soon replace Catholicism by 2030. International speaker and evangelist Christine Caine says she has had the privilege of doing youth gatherings around the globe and says teens worldwide are looking for an authentic and genuine connection to Jesus. “There is a desperation. A sense of ‘Our world is spiralling out of control and we need something bigger than ourselves to intervene in this. We don’t want religion; we don’t want culture wars. We want a radical encounter with a living God that’s going to make a difference in my everyday life’,” she told Barna. The Global Gospel Coalition is a ministry focusing on taking the Good News to the youth in Brazil.
“Hundreds of students heard the Gospel in 10 different school outreaches in Manacapuru. At every outreach, we share the Gospel, invite the students to give their lives to Jesus, and pray for them,” reads their website. After ministering in Manacapuru, Brazil, Evangelist Rubens Cunha wrote, “I count it a great privilege to be able to reach children and teenagers at public schools in Brazil. Young people are hungry for Christ, and we need to do everything we can to reach this generation.”
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