Will we be remembered for our political aspirations or for feeding the famished?
You’re reading the English translation of the winner of Christianity Today’s second annual essay contest for Christians who write in Portuguese. Learn more about the competition and CT’s multilingual work and check out the winning essays written originally in Chinese, French, Indonesian, and Spanish.
Brazil’s 2010 Census revealed that evangelicals in Brazil had reached nearly a quarter (22.2%) of the total population. Most expect this number to be even larger in the next census. In the most optimistic estimates, by 2040, Brazil’s evangelical population will surpass that of Catholics (who made up 64.4% of the population in the 2010 data).
As the number of evangelicals continues to rise, the community has the opportunity to grapple with the legacy it will leave on Brazil. What concrete impact should its presence have on the country? Perhaps more important, how will the lives of those who suffer the most change as a result of the expanding influence of evangelicals?
As the number of evangelicals grows, I expect the impact of our Christian witness on the country to also grow. But what will be the focus of our testimony: increasing our numbers in the halls of power or proclaiming the kingdom and caring for those who suffer?
Hunger in Brazil and in the Bible
Last July, Brazil returned to the United Nations’ Hunger Map eight years after it had first left. Today, at least 61 million Brazilians face some form of food insecurity, and 4 percent of the population suffers from chronic hunger. The data is alarming, especially since Brazil is a major global food producer. There is plenty of food; it just doesn’t make it to everyone’s table.
Hunger is a global problem, a part of human history since …