Nestled in the rugged Tatra Mountains of Eastern Europe, the landlocked nation of Slovakia has carved a new life from its time spent occupied by the Soviet Union and is now one of the fastest developing economies in the world. In spite of being occupied by various empires and Nazi Germany, Slovak national pride helped to preserve both a unique language and history that continue to thrive today.
Since Czechoslovakia split into Slovakia and Czech Republic in a peaceful settlement known as the "Velvet Divorce", Slovakia has successfully developed into a nation with a flourishing economy. Though there is a distinct gap between rich and poor, and unemployment is still an issue being addressed, the Slovak people have instigated numerous business and government reforms to encourage growth. Among the various ethnic groups that compromise the Slovak population is the Romani community, a small indigenous enclave that has in recent years been experiencing persecution and abuse at the hands of Slovak police. Although authorities have been called on to end the violence, many Romani people feel they are treated as second-class citizens.
The country of Slovakia has undergone radical changes in the past decade alone, and one of the unfortunate changes that has taken shape in the shadow of modernization is the development of spiritual stagnation. Though eighty to ninety percent of the population calls itself Christian, diminishing church attendance and a heavy atmosphere of nominalism shows a waning faith in the Slovak people. Despite a traditional Christian heritage permeating Slovak culture, depression and suicide rates are some of the highest in Europe. God's light, however, knows no bounds and He will make it shine for His people of Slovakia through those He has equipped. Slovakia is still under the hand of the Lord and is seeking the peace and joy that only comes from Christ.