Introduction / History
The Komo are horticulturalists who live in Eastern Zaire in the rain forest and rolling hills. They come from Bantu stock who migrated southward from modern day Cameroon to the Congo River Basin, then upstream toward the Ituri, Maiko and Lowa tributaries, beginning around 1000 B.C. The Komo are hospitable people, with a somewhat poor self image, who have historically been persecuted, both by Swahili traders under the leadership of Tiputip, and by Belgian colonialists. They were Animists who came under Christian influence in the mid-1930's. Now they have a Christian verneer over their Animist worldview.
The core ritual is circumcision of adolescent boys; their practice of circumcision has been copied by neighboring people groups. They are known as innovators in the religious sphere. For example, there was a Pentecostal revival in the early 1950's that spread throughout the church in the heart of Africa area, led by non-Pentecostal missionaries from the Komo people.
The Komo place a high value on loyalty to the extended family and honoring the in-laws.
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