Basque Country Prayer Points for Week of October 9, 2023

Prayer Points and verse for the week:

Prayers points:

  • Statistics for crime were recently released for the first half of 2023. An upward trend was seen in some areas: sexual violence was up ~20%, Cybercrimes was up ~30%. With a down trend being seen with robberies using violence and intimidation down ~10% and forced robberies in homes or other premises down ~10%.
    • Pray for those who are victims of crime, the police officers who protect the city and those who commit the crimes to have their eyes opened to its effects.
  • The Catholic Pope recently announced 21 new cardinals, with 3 of those being from Spain. The Pope has been working to make changes to the organization to have more representation from Catholic minorities. With the recent announcement Spain still has the 3rd most in the organization, behind Italy and the United States. Their purpose is to elect the new Pope.
    • Pray for the Pope as he makes new appointments and for the cardinals when the time comes to elect a new Pope.
  • A new president still has not been elected in Spain. Pedro Sánchez (PSOE) has until November 27 to rally enough votes, should that not happen. Spainards will once again be heading to vote in January. He is facing a lot of pressure as he looks to gain support from Catalonia, specifically Puigdemont who is requesting amnesty from the judicial process he is currently facing. Feijoó (PP) is also working to be elected, though he does not look to be able to gain enough alignment from others to get the needed votes.
    • Pray for the legislatures as they look to elect/re-elect a President for Spain.
  • The number of small businesses closing is quite large for the Gipuzkoa region of Basque Country. In the last 4 years ~1300 small businesses have closed, with ~60% of them having been open for 5 years or more. The service sector was most affected, seeing ~75%. One of the biggest reasons for the closures are the effects from the pandemic.
    • Pray for small business owners, workers and the government as they look to navigate the current economic environment
  • Last week Iñigo Urkullu (PNV), who is the leader of the Basque government, participated in a meeting sponsored by the local newspaper. During the discussion he talked about how the coalition between PNV and PSE was making progress even though another political party felt they were not making progress. He presented numbers showing how in the last 10 years GDP for the region has grown and that unemployment is down close to ~10%. He also talked about the current status for electing a new president of Spain and the desire to have healthcare wait times reduced to what they were before the pandemic, as they have increased afterwards.
    • Pray for Urkullu as he works to lead the Basque Government with wisdom and peace amongst all the different parties.
  • The concern for the mental health of youth was described as serious and increasing, as the professionals see higher cases of anxiety, depression and attempted suicides. They are seeing the causes be more than from COVID, as some students feel isolated and do not have a group of friends. Due to the situation the Basque Government put a strategy in place to address this and over a year 613 incidents for suicide prevention were opened in Basque Country. This is currently the highest non-natural cause of death in Basque Country and they are putting protocols in place to try and address it.
    • Pray for the youth that have these thoughts that they find the right help, as well as parents, school administrators and leaders as they look to develop systems to help youth in these situations.

The verse for the week:

For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake and the gospel’s will save it.

Mark 8:35 ESV

Basque Country Prayer Points for Week of September 25, 2023

Prayer Points and verse for the week:

Prayers points:

  • Inflation continues to be a problem, while it’s not as high as it has been people are still feeling the effects. To help, the government has reduced taxes on gas and electricity while reducing public transportation fees, though households are still feeling the effects as wages have not been increasing either.
    • Pray for families as they look to figure out how to pay for food, rent and other life items and the government/economists as they look for ways to assist.
  • Osakidetza (Basque public healthcare system) is continuing to explore solutions to help with suicide prevention. A new risk system has identified that it has helped close to 400 people over the past 15 months. They are planning to continue to evolve the system and will be sharing training materials with those who work in the health care system to help in identifying those who may be at risk.
    • Pray for healthcare workers as they look for those who are contemplating suicide and for those who are in the situation where they believe suicide is the best option.
  • Basque Country is seeing the highest level of narcotic drugs in its history. With the prices going down and the purity level increasing it has also required the hospital system to be more prepared, along with recovery clinics. Recently Ertzaintza (Basque Police) and the Spanish military police seized ~600 pounds of drugs, which included hashish, cocaine, marijuana, speed, and ecstasy.
    • Pray for the police as they look to understand the problem, and the hospital system and rehabilitation clinics as they look to treat patients. That the population young and old would not see this as the right source to escape life.
  • The Basque legislation recently passed The Law for History and Democracy, with an objective to remember the victims of terrorist attacks between 1936 – 1975 and work to ensure that the acts against democracy are not repeated. The voting was 68 of 75 in favor, which is one of the largest margins for passing a law in recent history. Additionally, the leader of the Basque Government, Urkullu is wanting the Spanish Government to explore gaining more autonomy, though some are unsure if the Spanish Constitution as written would support it.
    • Pray for those who have been impacted by the terrorist acts and the leadership as they look to explore more autonomy.
  • After the July national elections, the newly elected leaders are working to form a new government. Part of the process is selecting a new leader. Feijóo was the first candidate put forward given his party (PP) has the most seats though not an absolute majority, Feijóo was not successful in gaining an absolute majority this week after two different votes were taken. King Philip IV has called for meetings with the political leaders on Monday, October 1 and Tuesday, October 2 to start the voting process for Sánchez. Sánchez has been working to make agreements with other political parties to gain enough support to be elected. Some are not happy with the commitments Sánchez is making with the other political parties to get elected.
    • Pray for the newly elected political leaders as they try to elect a new leader and then begin and address the items on the congressional docket.

The verse for the week:

 My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, because human anger does not produce the righteousness that God desires. Therefore, get rid of all moral filth and the evil that is so prevalent and humbly accept the word planted in you, which can save you.

James 1:19-21 NIV

Basque Country Prayer Points for Week of April 3, 2023

Prayer Points and verse for the week:

Prayers points:

  • The Basque Public Health Care system continues to be under strain. Some of the local clinics are having to reduce hours as they do not have enough staff to cover them. Another problem is the average number of days patients are having to wait before surgery. It is currently an average of 64 days versus before COVID being 49. The public health leaders are attempting to put measures in place to help reduce the time.
    • Pray for medical staff, leaders and patients as they navigate the different aspects of the healthcare system
  • The leader of the Spanish Pension system is communicating that currently they do not see a reason to delay the retirement age. The reason for this message is because of changes that are happening in the French retirement system. They communicated that the Spanish system is robust enough and is viable through 2050
    • Pray for the leaders of the retirement system. Also pray for those who are considering retiring as once that happens the wage is locked in except for cost of living increases and for those who are already retired as they try to make the salary they receive from the system work given the economic environment.
  • Recently the Spanish Congress passed an increase in the minimum payments for those on the retirement system. This will benefit more than 3 million people as they will see an increase over the next 4 years.
    • Praise that those in the retirement system are seeing an increase in the pay that helps offset some of the increases in the cost of living
  • Access to pornographic material by minors is something Non-governmental organizations and the government are investigating. France recently put a technology solution in place to verify those accessing the material were over 18. With the average of first access being as young as 8 and the average age 14, the government and others are looking for ways to ensure the material is only accessed by those of age.
    • Pray as solutions are being investigated for preventing access to pornographic material to those who are underage.
  • On May 28 elections will be happening here in Spain. During these elections new leaders will be selected at the local, regional and national level. Those choices will have an impact on the upcoming legislative calendars for what projects will continue and/or law changes that will be made.
    • Pray for the people as they look to determine which candidate will best represent them in the coming years to make legislative decisions.

The verse for the week:

But he was pierced for our transgressions; he was crushed for our iniquities; upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace, and with his wounds we are healed.

Isaiah 53:5 ESV

News for prayer for Week of February 21, 2022

Headline News:

The big headline as of late last week is the schism that happened in the PP party. I’ll discuss it in the political section below.

Over the last week COVID cases have continued the downward trend. This is good news considering that our restrictions have been greatly reduced. Night clubs are open and the first large community gatherings are starting to happen. One happened this past Saturday night, called Caldereros here in Donostia. Then tomorrow (Thursday, February 24) Fat Thursday starts the kick off of carnaval in a nearby town of Tolosa.  With the number of cases down significantly normal surgeries have restarted at the hospital.

The trial of a serial sexual predator who assultated women for 7 years in Lasarte-Oria (small town just outside of Donostia) has started. They believe he assaulted at least 10 women. During the trial it was reported that he used chloroform to subdue the women in the attacks. They were able to confirm his identity thanks to DNA.

The sexual abuse that happened in the catholic church continues to be reported on. An independent council of 18 people has been established to review all the cases. The two focuses of the council are to review the previous work done by the dioceses and to establish contact with the victims. The Basque Government made a statement that it condemns what happened and will make available all protocols to hold those responsible for what happened.


The cost of inflation for January reported at 6.1% which is down 0.4% compared to December. This was the second straight month that it was above 6%. These levels have not been seen in almost 30 years. Salaries are not expected to match this pace. The expectation for February is to be 7.1%, while the whole year is expected to be 4.6%.

The IBEX35 ended last week on a small upward trend closing at 8,590.00, a 0.01% increase for the week.


As stated above, the headlines have been focused on the schism that is happening in the PP party, who are considered conservative. The news broke last week after Ayuso (a member of the PP who leads the city of Madrid and has been rising in popularity) made accusations against Casado, the current leader. The accusations are that the leaders in the by PP party were attempting to discredit Ayuso and were investigating irregularities with a purchase made in April of 2020. The purchase in question was done by Ayuso’s brother for 250K FFP2 and FFP3 masks for ~1.5 million euro. One leader has already stepped down and there is a call for Casado to step down as well.


The focus of a majority of the international headlines has been the conflict between Russia – Ukraine and the response of the rest of the world. Easing of some EU border control regarding COVID restrictions starting March 1 was also reported on.


Real Sociedad played two games last week. The first was for the Europa League, in which they are in the playoffs of one home game and one away game. The first game was played in Leipzig (Italy) and the result was a 2-2 tie. The next game is at home tomorrow (Thursday, Feb 24). On Sunday it was back to La Liga play in which they played their Basque rival Athletic Bilbao to the result of a 0 – 4 loss. This moves the team to 7th place overall. The next La Liga game is Sunday against Osasuna. 

GBC has played two games since my last update. The first was against Estudiantes which was a 54 – 72 loss. Next they played against in-province rival Juaristi Iraurgi. The result was a 80 – 70 victory. The team is currently in 9th place, last spot for the end of the season playoff. The next game is March 6 against Leyma Coruna.

Prayer Points and verse for the week:

Prayers points:

  • COVID-19 continue downward trend
  • Impacts of inflation
  • Political stability in Spain & the world

The verse for this week focused on peace given all that is going on. I thought this verse fit well:

And the Peace of God, Which Transcends All Understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Jesus Christ.

Philippians 4:7