Arab, Moroccan in Sweden

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People Name: Arab, Moroccan
Country: Sweden
10/40 Window: No
Population: 5,700
World Population: 29,308,500
Primary Language: Arabic, Moroccan Spoken
Primary Religion: Islam
Christian Adherents: 0.09 %
Evangelicals: 0.00 %
Scripture: New Testament
Online Audio NT: No
Jesus Film: Yes
Audio Recordings: Yes
People Cluster: Arab, Maghreb
Affinity Bloc: Arab World
Progress Level:

Introduction / History

Arabs represent the largest, most diverse, and most politically influential Muslim ethnic grouping in the world. While there are several characteristics that determine if a person is a true Arab, one trait is always evident: a proud sense of being an Arab. The early Islamic period was a time when "Arab identity" meant that all Arabs had descended from a common male ancestor. Thus, being an Arab brought recognition, honor and certain privileges. Their physical, geographical and religious aspects all vary greatly. However, the ability to speak Arabic (or an Arabic dialect) and identification with the Arabian cultural heritage are, perhaps, the two most essential elements. Arabs are the majority people in many countries in the Arabian Peninsula, the Maghreb, and all of North Africa. From there, Arab and Berber armies turned northward, and conquered the Iberian Peninsula (i. E. , Spain and Portugal), and held all or part of it till 1492. Arabs were not as much of a threat to northern European countries like Belgium, the Netherland, Norway, Sweden, and Germany. Moroccans have been migrating to Sweden since the early 1960s, a time when they were able to find jobs in the service industry: cleaning, driving, construction, etc. Unfortunately, things have taken a turn for the worse for them in recent years, so there are few Moroccans in Sweden compared with other parts of Europe.

What Are Their Lives Like?

Today Moroccan Arabs have come to Sweden seeking educational and job opportunities and a better life than they had in Morocco. Sadly, there is a high percentage of street children and youths in Sweden from Morocco. Moroccan children in Sweden often do not get the education they need, which will make it very difficult for them to find adequate work. Moroccans are often deported from Sweden because they are not there seeking asylum, since Morocco has a stable government. Moroccan youths often blend in with Sweden's post-modern culture, but they are not likely to turn away from Islam, a big part of their identity.

What Are Their Beliefs?

It is difficult for Moroccan Arabs in secularized Sweden to maintain their Islamic identity. To do this, they sometimes get more immersed in Muslim activities, and stay clear of the Swedish culture around them. Secular humanism isn't a formal religious system, and it has very little appeal to Moroccan Arabs. Still, those who want to fit in with European culture probably become more secularized. It is hard to imagine where the Moroccan Arabs will be spiritually in a generation or two. Most likely, they will maintain their identity with Islam, but it will not affect their lives like it did in Morocco.

What Are Their Needs?

People who genuinely follow Christ will need to patiently and lovingly take the opportunity to take Christ to the Moroccan Arabs in Sweden. They can do this in part by helping to teach language and work skills.

Prayer Points

Pray that God will raise up faithful intercessors who will stand in the gap for Moroccan Arabs in Sweden. Pray that the softening of their traditional culture will soften their hearts so they will hunger for the truth and eagerly accept it when they hear it. Pray for a church planting movement among Moroccan Arabic speaking people in Sweden that will show others the transforming power of the gospel in their lives. Ask the Lord to raise up strong local churches and discipleship movements among Diaspora Arabs in Sweden.

Text Source:   Joshua Project