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europe - A Wide Open Door Europe, one of the world's seven continents, has a land mass that covers 3,930,000 square miles or 2% of the world's surface. It is the third most populous continent after Asia and Africa, with a population of 731 million. This is 11% of the world's population. Europe is the birthplace of Western culture. From the 16th century onwards, European nations played a predominant role in global affairs. After World War I and II, the dominance of world affairs centered on the United States and Russia. Europe has continued on a gradual decline in global influence as well as in the decline of traditional morality and Christian culture values. Evidence of decline is seen in a low number of church members. For example, in Catholic Italy attendance is 15%, Germany 14%, England 5% and France 4%. Europe's Christianity is being replaced with humanism and atheism. Two-thirds of British youth surveyed between the ages of 18-24 believed more in astrology than in the Bible. Another survey conducted in London showed 80% of Londoners did not know that God commands children to honor their parents, and 91% could not recall that the Bible forbids lying. Materialism and hedonism have replaced spiritual values and honest character in the lives of people. Political scandal, hatred between the races, liberal religious teaching, denial of the authority and inerrancy of the Bible, the free use of drugs, alcohol, tolerance of abortion, and immorality all point to the tragic decline of a once great area of the world known as Europe. In 1962 Baptist International Missions, Inc., sent its first church planters to Europe. They entered Spain. In May 1964 the second couple arrived in Sussex, England, to commence their ministry. Praise the Lord, today 118 BIMI missionaries serve the Lord in 18 European countries. The opportunities to evangelize are exciting and challenging. Since the breakup of Communism and the fall of Russia in 1991, BIMI has been able to print and distribute more than 1.2 million Bibles in Russian and other East European languages. What kind of Christian worker is Baptist International Missions looking for? You need to be willing and able to learn the foreign European language where you decide to settle. Determine to stay for the long haul. Be reasonably educated with a good command of English grammar, a desire to learn another's culture, music, and history in order to adapt well. Be in good mental and physical health. Have strong family support. Take regularly good doses of cheerfulness and possess a joyful born- again personal relationship with God and be filled with the power of the Holy Spirit. This timeline is a representative sample of just a few of the great things God has done through BIMI in its first fifty years. 27