Somali in Denmark

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People Name: Somali
Country: Denmark
10/40 Window: No
Population: 11,000
World Population: 26,240,400
Primary Language: Somali
Primary Religion: Islam
Christian Adherents: 0.00 %
Evangelicals: 0.00 %
Scripture: Complete Bible
Online Audio NT: No
Jesus Film: Yes
Audio Recordings: Yes
People Cluster: Somali
Affinity Bloc: Horn of Africa Peoples
Progress Level:

Introduction / History

The Somali first appeared in the Horn of Africa around 1200 and began expanding westward and southward about 150 years later. They converted to Islam around 1550, under the influence of Arab traders that had settled along the coast of present-day Somalia. By 1650, they had moved into Ethiopia.

The Somali share a common language, adhere to a single faith, and share a cultural heritage that is an integral part of their lifestyle. Their name is derived from the words, "so maal," which literally mean, "Go milk a beast for yourself!" To the Somali, this is actually a rough expression of hospitality.

Where Are they Located?

The majority of Somalis live in Somalia, Ethiopia, or Kenya, but a small number have made their way to Western countries like Denmark.

What Are Their Lives Like?

Most Somalis came to Denmark in the 1990s. For several years European nations like Denmark allowed Somalis to enter as refugees, but that is changing as refugees arrive from Iraq and Syria. Believers who come in the name of the Lord must do so before the Somalis are settled into a new land. Missionaries make it clear that once migrant people are settled they tend to be far less open to spiritual change.

Somalis are becoming less welcome in Denmark. Many Danes suspect them of being terrorists and criminals.

What Are Their Beliefs?

Although the Somali are nearly all Muslims, numerous beliefs and traditions have been intermingled with their Islamic practices. The standard Islamic prayers are usually observed; however, Somali women have never worn the required veils. Somali frequently turn to the wadaad (a religious expert) for blessings, charms and advice in worldly matters.

What Are Their Needs?

Somalis, in Denmark as well as the rest of the world, need spiritual discernment. They also need a hunger for something better than the spiritual lives that they have settled for. On an economic level, they need to learn the local Danish language and job skills that will help them prosper in the new country.

Prayer Points

Pray that the Somali's would come to know Jesus Christ, who is the bread of life.
Ask God to grant favor and wisdom to mission agencies that are focusing on the Somalis in Europe.
Ask the Holy Spirit to soften Somali hearts towards believers so that they will be receptive to the gospel.
Pray for the Holy Spirit to birth a cascading discipleship movement among the Somalis in Europe for God's glory.
Pray that God will raise up prayer teams to go and break up the soil through worship and intercession.

Text Source:   Keith Carey