Population: 47.1 million (2013)
Official language: Spanish
Major religion: Christianity
IFES movement: Federación de Grupos Bíblicos Universitarios de España (GBU)
Spain is a democracy with distinct regional identities. Although Spain has a high standard of living the global economic crisis has had a major impact.
Roman Catholicism has traditionally been the main religion; 71% still identify themselves as Catholic although most do not attend church regularly. There are around 500,000 Evangelical Christians; there has been steady growth in recent times, mainly as a result of immigration.
- 75 universities
- 600 students
- 74 groups in 42 universities
- 25 staff
- growing graduates ministry in 8 professional areas
More than 100 GBU students, young graduates and staff attended the European Evangelism Conference ‘Undivided’ in 2012. In 1984, the movement attended the first of these conferences, bringing 14 students – thirty years later the delegation was almost ten times larger! Leaders are grateful for how the GBU has grown in quality and quantity since the first group was formed 45 years ago.
The movement is also grateful for the growth of their graduate ministry, which was started 30 years ago, and the opening of their own publishing house (Publicaciones Andamio) this year. They praise God for the impact of the Mark Drama through performances in student groups and churches: in 2013 3,000 people attended a presentation of the gospel of Mark, of which about 500 were not Christians.
View from the inside
Francisco Mira Moyes is the General Secretary of GBU. He says that he committed to student ministry following ‘a very clear call of the Lord just before completing my university studies.’ Francisco adds, ‘The grace and the strength of the Lord over the years have maintained my vision and passion.’
Francisco has read many Bible verses that have inspired and encouraged him over the years, one of which is Acts 20:24: ‘However, I consider my life worth nothing to me; my only aim is to finish the race and complete the task the lord Jesus has given me - the task of testifying to the good news of God’s grace.’
- for evangelism to continue to be a priority;
- for the integration of new students from churches in order to grow and strengthen student groups;
- for God to keep raising up student leaders, volunteers and staff.