Wolof in Italy

Main Language
Largest Religion
Progress Gauge

Introduction / History

Hundreds of years ago, the Wolof people conquered many tribes in the northwestern Senegal area. By the end of the 1300s, the Wolof had grown into a large empire of separate, self-governing states. By the 1500s the empire had split into four major Wolof kingdoms.

The French expanded into Senegal during the 1800s, making it a colony of French West Africa. In 1946, the Wolof of Senegal were awarded French citizenship, and today, many Wolof have their homes in France, though a smaller number have migrated to Italy. European influences are still a part of Wolof culture, which are seen in village and social customs.

Where Are they Located?

The Wolof are a large ethnic group. Most of the Wolof people are located in the West African countries of Senegal and The Gambia. In recent years, however, the expansion of peanut cultivation and an acceleration towards urbanization has motivated many of the Wolof to spread out into Cote d 'Ivoire and Mali. There they hoped to make use of the land and find better jobs in the cities. Some have made their way to Europe. Those who live in Italy are most likely to be found in Rome.

What Are Their Lives Like?

The Wolof people are probably not prepared to enter the workforce in the high-tech urban environment of Italy.

What Are Their Beliefs?

The Wolof people frequently follow Sufi traditions. The Sufis are a mystical sector of Islam that incorporates much more demonstrations of emotions than other Islamic traditions. They are sometimes admired and other times derided by other Muslims. In Africa there are many Sufi brotherhoods for the Wolof people. To some degree, these Sufi brotherhoods have followed them to Europe.

What Are Their Needs?

The Wolof have been closed to Christianity for many years. Today, most of the Wolof groups have a number of Christian resources available to them, and mission agencies have focused on each of the groups. Sadly, however, very few of the Wolof people follow the Lord, be they in Africa or Europe. There is a great need for laborers who are sensitive to the Muslim cultures to work among the Wolof and to share Christ's love.

Prayer Points

Pray for the translation of the Old Testament into Wolof.
Pray for effectiveness of the JESUS Film, radio, and other evangelistic tools among the Wolof people.
Pray that the Wolof people living in Italy would come to know God and return as spiritual leaders for their people.
Ask the Lord to raise up strong local churches among Wolof communities in Italy.
Ask God to raise up prayer teams to break up the soil through worship and intercession.
Ask God to grant wisdom and favor to mission agencies focusing on the Wolof.
Pray that their traditional Muslim culture will soften, creating open doors for the gospel to be preached among them.

Scripture Prayers for the Wolof in Italy.



Profile Source:   Keith Carey  

People Name General Wolof
People Name in Country Wolof
Pronunciation WOE-loff
Alternate Names Gambian; Gambian Wolof; Lebu
Population this Country 79,000
Population all Countries 6,856,000
Total Countries 13
Indigenous No
Progress Scale 1
Unreached Yes
Frontier People Group Yes
GSEC 1  (per PeopleGroups.org)
Pioneer Workers Needed 2
People ID 15414
ROP3 Code 110856
ROP25 Code 308823
ROP25 Name Wolof
Country Italy
Region Europe, Western
Continent Europe
10/40 Window No
Persecution Rank Not ranked
Country Italy
Region Europe, Western
Continent Europe
10/40 Window No
Persecution Rank Not ranked
Primary Religion: Islam
Major Religion Percent
0.00 %
Christianity  (Evangelical 0.00 %)
0.00 %
Ethnic Religions
0.00 %
0.00 %
100.00 %
0.00 %
Other / Small
0.00 %
0.00 %
Primary Language Wolof (79,000 speakers)
Language Code wol   Ethnologue Listing
Language Written Yes   ScriptSource Listing
Total Languages 1
Primary Language Wolof (79,000 speakers)
Language Code wol   Ethnologue Listing
Total Languages 1
People Groups Speaking Wolof

Primary Language:  Wolof

Bible Translation Status  (Years)
Bible-Portions Yes  (1873-1997)
Bible-New Testament Yes  (1987-2010)
Bible-Complete No
FCBH NT (www.bible.is) Online
YouVersion NT (www.bible.com) Online
Possible Print Bibles
World Bibles
Forum Bible Agencies
National Bible Societies
World Bible Finder
Virtual Storehouse
Resource Type Resource Name Source
Audio Recordings Audio Bible teaching Global Recordings Network
Audio Recordings Story of Jesus audio Jesus Film Project
Film / Video God's Story video God's Story
Film / Video Indigitube.tv Video / Animation Create International
Film / Video Jesus Film: view in Wolof Jesus Film Project
Film / Video Magdalena video Jesus Film Project
Film / Video Rock International: King of Glory Rock International
Film / Video World Christian Videos World Christian Videos
General Bible for Children Bible for Children
General Faith Comes By Hearing - Bible in text or audio or video Faith Comes by Hearing
General Faith Comes By Hearing - Bible in text or audio or video Faith Comes by Hearing
General Scripture Earth Gospel resources links Scripture Earth
General Walk with the Prophets and meet the Messiah Al Massira
General YouVersion Bible versions in text and/or audio YouVersion Bibles
Mobile App Android Bible app direct APK download SIL
Mobile App Android Bible app: Wolof YouVersion Bibles
Mobile App iOS Bible app: Wolof YouVersion Bibles
Text / Printed Matter Download scripture in this language eBible.org
Text / Printed Matter Literacy primer for Wolof Literacy & Evangelism International
Photo Source Anonymous 
Map Source Bethany World Prayer Center  
Profile Source Keith Carey 
Data Sources Data is compiled from various sources. Learn more.

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