Published on April 12th, 2004
Morocco’s population is about 33 million, a few million less than the population of California.
At 6 a.m. U.S. Central Standard Time, it is 12 p.m. in Morocco.
Morocco’s “Marathon of the Sands” has been called “the toughest footrace on earth.” The race lasts six days and covers more than 150 miles in hundred-degree temperatures.
During Jesus’ time on earth, Rome ruled the land where He lived. Rome also ruled North Africa where Morocco is today. After Jesus’ death on the cross, Christianity spread to North Africa. People called Berbers lived there then, and some still live in Morocco today. Arab armies brought Islam to North Africa in the seventh century. Over the years, many groups ruled Morocco, including the Spanish and the French. Morocco became an independent country in 1956.
Islam is the official religion of Morocco, and about 99 percent of the people are Muslims. Morocco’s king is called “the Commander of the Faithful.” He makes sure that Moroccans respect Islam.
The king’s job is to be sure that the country continues to show “respect for Islam.” The government forbids people from handing out Christian books and pamphlets. Christian missionary work is not allowed. Christians may be left alone if they do not try to spread their faith. But leading people to Christ is against the law. Muslims who become Christians are often treated badly in Morocco. Many Moroccans are deciding to follow Christ anyway.