Qatar: The Burgundy

By: Carlos Castro

The team known for their burgundy jersey will make their World Cup debut in their own home! Although Qatar automatically qualified as the organizer of the event, its participation in recent tournaments and its excellent results are worth noting. The team was proclaimed champion of the 2019 Asian Cup, the same year it was invited by CONMEBOL to play the Copa América in Brazil. In addition, Qatar played in the Arab Cup and, in the following CONCACAF Gold Cup, they managed to reach the semifinals, in the United States.

If the entire Qatari territory could be traveled by car, in a straight line, it could be done in less than two hours. Qatar is a peninsula that protrudes into the Persian Gulf, and whose length, from north to south, does not exceed 180km. The estimated population is 2.7 million people, of which 2.3 million are foreigners! This is due to the massive arrival of labor dating back to the early 80’s. Its climate and deserts are so dry that only 1% of the country’s land is suitable for growing crops. However, its other valuable natural resources (gas and oil) serve as the backbone of its economy.

In addition to its famous Bedouin races, one of this nation’s most outstanding traditions is the breeding and training of falcons. The birds of prey are valued for their size, intelligence, and color, and can cost more than 200,000 dollars. Many families inherit this tradition, and it is maintained by the hunting and skill competitions that take place at this time of year.

After working for 7 years, Beda Robles, a Filipino immigrant, got permission to build the first evangelical building in the country. This happened in 2008. The Christian presence in Qatar is estimated at 1,200 members, although converting a Muslim to Christianity is technically considered a capital offence. This is the reason why most evangelicals are foreigners.

Qatar is a country that should be in our prayers in the coming months. Let us ask God to touch the soul of every Qatari, to allow the formation of new churches, and for the existing monarchy to declare greater religious freedom.

Resources consulted:

Photograph National Team:

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