- For order and stability in Somalia.
- For the many women who have been raped, divorced and left by their husbands.
- For the many children who have been smuggled out of Somalia.
- For the medical needs of the people of Somalia.
- For the believing minority who suffer great persecution and martyrdom to be strengthened.
- For isolated believers to be kept safe while they fellowship.
Eastern Africa, bordering the Gulf of Aden and the Indian Ocean, East of Ethiopia
11 391 962 (2017 est.)
Sunni Muslim (Islam) (official according to the 2012 Transitional Federal Charter)
660 000 (2017)
LEAST REACHED PEOPLE GROUPS:
Father, we pray for order and stability in Somalia. We ask that you restore the chaos that has created a haven for smugglers, bandits, pirates and terrorists, only fueling the problems.
We bring before You the many women who have been raped, divorced and left by their husbands and the many children who have been smuggled out of Somalia and into exploitation or abandonment.
Lord Jesus, we pray for the medical needs of the people of Somalia as they have the lowest health budget of any nation, and the highest infant mortality rate – nearly 12% of all children die as infants. We pray, Lord, for wise administration of aid in Somalia. We pray for protection and effective ministry for aid workers, many of whom are Christians.
We also pray for the believing minority who suffer great persecution and martyrdom. We pray that You will strengthen those who are boldly sharing their faith and give them courage. Father, please keep isolated believers safe while they fellowship and continue to encourage them by Your Holy Spirit. In the name of Jesus we pray. Amen.
State of the Church
The Somali Church of minority Christians was driven underground during the Islamist uprising of 1991. Most of the several hundred Somali believers went underground or fled, taking refuge abroad. There are possibly about 4 000 Christians currently living in Somalia, while it is estimated that twice that number have spread to refugee communities in other nations.
Christians in Somalia practice their faith in secret under extremely dangerous conditions. The murder of Christians, especially converts from Islam to Christianity, is increasingly common. At least 10 Christians, including four teachers, were killed for their faith in 2008, and several others were kidnapped and raped. A 17-year-old Somali woman who converted to Christianity from Islam was shot to death in November 2010 in an apparent "honour killing.” Muslim militants murdered a 21- year-old Christian man in April 2011 after someone allegedly informed the Islamic militants of his conversion from Islam. Al-Shabaab has claimed responsibility for most of the Christian murders.
Somalia, a country with a very ancient history. It gained its modern independence in 1960, uniting former British and Italian colonies into one nation. Cold War rivalries between Russia and the US in the following decades provided Somalia with a mass of weapons that equipped them for disastrous wars against Ethiopia and for internal clan fighting – conflicts which brought the country to a state of destitution. Civil war in 1991 toppled the dictatorship, but no viable leadership alternative emerged. In 2006, the Union of Islamic Courts took control of the capital, Mogadishu, along with significant areas of the country. Eventually, Ethiopian and local government forces were able to expel the militants from the capital, but more than 10 000 civilians were killed and approximately one million people displaced.
Sunni Islam is the official religion of Somalia and militant Islamic groups still control the majority of the southern and central regions of the country. In recent years, terrorist group Al-Shabaab has rapidly gained power in Somalia and is now an officially recognised branch of Al-Qaeda. It also has ties to Nigeria’s Boko Haram. 2011 was a crisis year for Somalia as the region faced a major famine and tens of thousands of people died from hunger. And while foreign aid is sent to the country, Al-Shabaab continues to block aid flowing through to refugees and a starving Somali population, and to block the entry of international aid groups.
- African Prayer Initiative: Pray Africa
- INcontext ministries – http://incontextministries.org/
- CIA World Factbook
- Atlas of Global Christianity – Todd M.Johnson & Kenneth R. Ross (Published by – Edinburgh University Press) (Missionaries and national workers: Africa 2010, page 267)
- Prayercast – http://prayercast.com/
- Unreached people groups – http://www.joshuaproject.net
- The voice of the Martyrs – http://www.persecution.com/
- Jul-Dec, 2010 International Religious Freedom Report – http://www.state.gov/j/drl/rls/irf/2010_5/index.htm
- Operation World – http://www.operationworld.org/african-countries