News, June 2005
News from the Churches
Festimadrid reaches 75,000 Over June 24th and 25th, this major Christian street festival featuring musicians from the Hispanic world and speaker Luís Palau took place in the Plaza in front of Madrid's Las Ventas bull ring. Among the musicians were José Luis Rodríguez (el Puma), Yuri, Rescate and Marcos Vidal.
Many of those attending the event were Latins or Gypsies, two groups with a far higher than average evangelical presence. Popular singer Rocío Jurado was invited onto the stage to be prayed for, as she has a diseased pancreas. Several hundred came forward to be prayed for as they asked Christ to be Lord of their life.
Rocio Jurado with Luis Palau and 'El Puma'
As a result of Palau's preaching, several hundred came forward to be prayed for as they asked Christ to be Lord of their life.Pray that these 'decisions' will bear true fruit to eternal life and that many will be able to settle into evangelical churches in the area where they can learn more of God's Word.
In addition to the main festival, Palau spoke at a women's and a businessmen's meeting. Both were attended by some 350 and a good number also took a decision for Christ. And there was also a parallel children's festival. Proceeds from drinks sold during the event went to Tsunami relief charities.
Women's Conference Visitors: 347
Enquiry Cards filled in: 252 of which Decisions: 94
Businessmen's dinner Visitors: 328
Cards filled in: 139, of which Decisions: 40
Friday evening festival Visitors: 35.000
Cards filled in: 1.580 of which, for salvation: 1.039
FestiNiños (Kids' Festival, Saturday afternoon) Visitors: 7.000
2nd festival evening Visitors: 38.000
Cards filled in: 4.012 of which, for salvation: 2.306
A week later, the same venue was used for a five hour mega MTV concert with the likes of Shakira singing. 18,000 attended.
New English speaking church on Costa Blanca The new church arises from the union of two recently started independent house groups, one of which was led by its very own bishop! They have a summer team from Witham from 25th July to 3rd August. It appears to be a non-Anglican charismatic Episcopal church, rahter in need of a native English-speaking webmaster! More: http://www.thekingschurch.net/
Madrid's Radio Encuentro forced to close On 18th June this station will be forced off the air after licencing authorities finally turned down the request made 3 years ago. Radio Encounter is a station broadly supported by the city's churches and all are disappointed at the news. Programming for other stations and an internet service will continue.. http://www.radioencuentro.net (Sorry only Windows Media).
1500 in 'Jesus Lives' march in Seville. On 28th May a mass street celebration/march was held in Seville and 1500 joined in. The activities began with several hours of activities in La Cartuja island, where the 1992 World Fair was held. Then, in the evening the assembled masses marched to the Tower of Gold, where gold brought from Spanish America was stored back in the 16th century. Here a concert was held.
Demonstration wins results: FestiMadrid, the Luís Palau outreach June 24th and 25th is supported by many of the region's churches. A major christian music festival, it will bring together some of the Spanish-speaking world's top performers, while Luís Palau speaks from time to time from the stage. The event will happen on the esplanade outside the Las Ventas bull ring, a key location, with good visibility and accessibility, although not as central as the organisers would have liked. A 600 person demonstration outside the city hall had to be arranged -on 9th May- to achieve an answer to the evangelical petition for a high profile location for the celebration.(See separate article.)
Split over new mariage laws. Evangelicals are all most concerned at the changes to the laws allowing homosexuals to 'marry' and adopt children. But there is a variety of opinion about whether to link up with the very Catholic movements behind the Spanish Family Forum and its mobilisation in mass demonstrations against the new, partly approved law. Many have joined these demonstrations, while the churches as a whole feel thay cannot make any stronger declarations than have so far been made, specifically voicing alarm about the adoption rules -when there are no babies for adoption anyway! A major demonstration took place in Madrid in 18th June.
NVI published in Spanish Spanish at last! After several years of success in Latin America, the International Bible Society has just published a version in Spanish Spanish of this translation based on the theological and linguistic studies made for the English language NIV. As with English, there are significant lingüistic differences on each side of the Atlantic!
New procedure for the appointment of foreign religious workers
Mayo 2005. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs 'Extranjería' has modified the regulations governing the procedure for inviting foreign religious workers to Spain. Until now, the procedure was initiated by the 'host church' in Spain, but now the 'guest' will need to hand in the documentation at the closest Spanish Consulate in his home land. More, in Spanish at: http://www.ferede.org/general.php?pag=vernoticia&cod=53
Sources El Mundo, TVE, EP, ProtestanteDigital, Ferede