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SAO PAULO: Two million in Brazil's March For Jesus

SAO PAULO: Two million in Brazil's March For Jesus Sao Paulo hosted the largest Christian gathering in Latin America. There was less political representation in this year's edition.

15 JUNE 2023

The 31st edition of the March for Jesus, an event organised by a range of evangelical churches and denominations in Brazil, gathered again on 8 June a huge crowd in Sao Paulo.

The event was born in the 1987 in London (UK) and has been held in Sao Paulo since 1993. It was included in Brazil's official calendar in 2009 by then President of the country, Lula da Silva, and is considered the largest of its kind in Latin America.

On this occasion, organisers said it was attended by nearly two million people, making it the largest evangelical gathering in the world.

The number of evangelicals in Brazil has experienced a large growth. The last official census in Brazil (2010) already counted over 41 million of them (compared to 123 million Catholics). Other estimates speak of nearly 50 million, one in four Brazilians.

The Brazilian edition March for Jesus is organised in the country by the Renacer en Cristo church (Reborn in Christ), led by the 'apostle' Estevam Hernandes, but also involves other well-known churches such as the Assemblies of God.

Marching and music

As in previous editions and after a long march, the faithful gathered in the Heroes Square of the Brazilian Expeditionary Force (FEB), in the northern part of Sao Paulo, where a gigantic stage built for the occasion was erected.

There, several well-known Christian artists led the crowd in worship. Brazil's Bruna Karla and US gospel bands Brandin Reed and Lakewood Music were among the over 20 artists.

Significant absences

The event is usually attended by the president in office, but this time Lula da Silva was absent because he was spending the Corpus Christi holiday in the Northeast region of the country. Attorney General Joge Messias was the representative of the government.

Former Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro, who had received strong political support in evangelical circles, did not participate either.

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