Introduction / History
Sutar is a subgroup of the the Lohar people. The Lohars are nomadic smiths who travel in order to sell their goods. They are descendants of high-caste weapon makers of the Mewar Kingdom in India. Unfortunately, they became poor nomads when the kingdom fell in 1568, and they are still poor today.
Where Are they Located?
Though other Lohar subgroups usually live further east and north, the Sutar Lohar people live in Gujarat, India’s westernmost state.
What Are Their Lives Like?
The Sutar Lohar lead hard lives. Although they work hard, they live in extreme poverty. This is partly because most people prefer to buy goods from stores and factories, not handmade items, which are more expensive and are of less quality. In addition, many cannot read or write because of the nomadic lifestyle they lead, where few have gone to school. Also, because of the Hindu caste system in India, they are considered "untouchables" and are despised. Plus, there are stereotypes about nomads, such as the idea that they are all thieves or corrupt, even though they generally work up to 14 hours a day.
What Are Their Beliefs?
Sutar Lohar people practice Hinduism, the ancient religion of India. They worship and serve the gods of the Hindu pantheon. Hindus believe that by performing rituals and good works that they will attain moksha or freedom from the endless cycle of birth, death and rebirth. They visit Hindu temples and offer prayers, food, flowers, and incense to their gods in hopes of gaining protection and benefits. They do not have a personal or familial relationship with their gods like Christians or Jews. There are many forms of Hinduism, each with its own deities and beliefs.
What Are Their Needs?
The main yearly holidays of the Sutar Lohar people are Holi, the festival of colors and the start of spring / Diwali, the festival of lights / Navratri, the celebration of autumn / and Rama Navami, Rama’s birthday.
The Sutar Lohar people need followers of Christ with the right skills to teach them marketable skills that will help them earn a better living in the years to come.
* Scripture Prayers for the Sutar Lohar in India.
* Pray for his kingdom to come and his will to be done among the Sutar Lohar people.
* Pray for a movement of Sutar Lohar households to study the Bible and accept the blessings of Christ.
* Pray for a spiritual hunger that will drive the Sutar Lohar people to the arms of Jesus.
*Pray for workers who are filled with the fruit and the power of the Holy Spirit to go to the Sutar Lohar people.