|Under the rule of the Incan empire until the coming of the Spanish in 1532, Ecuador came to serve as an important administrative center for the viceroyalty of Peru. Independence came centuries later in 1822. For the next eight years, Ecuador was part of the Gran Colombia federation. Eventually, the Catholic Church achieved special prominence in the country such that citizenship was linked to the religion, Jesuits were brought in to oversee education, among other actions. But in 1895, the anti-church party, the Radical Liberals, seized power and held it for the next half-century. Politically, the country has been essentially stable with the economy generally secure, particularly as oil was discovered in the 1960s.