The Kachipo of South Sudan
The Kacipo live in the Boma plateau region of South Sudan. They farm the rich fertile soil. The women are distinctive because they pierce and stretch their lower lips. They believe in the existence of a supreme being-God-as well as lesser spirits. They offer sacrifices and pray through a medium in times of calamity. Although they are deep into witchcraft, they are very receptive to the gospel, and in the past few years a church with over 150 people has begun. There is a great movement of the Spirit amongst the Kacipo, and though there is no Kacipo Bible, they are hungry to know the Word of God.
Pastor Dunyi reports that there is trouble with a neighboring people group, and prayers for reconciliation are needed. His home and compound were completely destroyed recently. Pray that the Lord will be the strength of the believers in the community, and that their testimony will be strong and courageous in these times of trouble.
Pray for this reality for the Kacipo: “At that time gifts will be brought to the LORD Almighty from a people tall and smooth-skinned, from a people feared far and wide, an aggressive nation of strange speech, whose land is divided by rivers…” Isaiah 18:7
In March a group consisting of AIC and AIM leadership traveled around the area of the Kachipo investigating possible ministry areas. Please pray for openness in the region to be able to reach this isolated people group for Christ.
Location and Background: The Kacipo (Suri) live on the Boma plateau with their tribal headquarters at Koma. They live in two villages, Meyun and Rumiit. They are a predominantly sedentary agrarian community, with rich fertile soil which allows them to grow a quantity of crops.
History: They believe they originally lived on the banks of the Nile River, migrating eastwards. They were continually harassed by other tribes, forcing them to settle on the Boma plateau in 1925. They continue to have poor relationships with their neighbors, the Murle.
Culture: Besides growing a large variety of crops, they also hunt large game and collect honey. They pan for gold, and they make pots. They trade in tobacco, pots, animal skins, honey, ivory, rifles and ammunition. They engage in traditional stick fighting after harvests. Some Kacipo practice cicatrisation, which is a form of tribal markings. The women pierce and stretch their lower lips as a sign of beauty. The clan chiefs lead their villages in times of war and peace, judge cases, and are recognized as leaders by their symbols such as an ivory horn, drum, and set of fire-sticks.
Religion: They believe in the existence of a supreme being-God-as well as lesser spirits. They sacrifice and pray through a medium in times of calamity. In Meyun there are 22 witchdoctors (one pictured below), 8 rainmakers commanded by the one main rainmaker, and 4 traditional healers. Although they are deep into witchcraft, they are very receptive to the gospel, and in the past few years a church with over 150 people has begun. There is a great movement of the Spirit amongst the Kacipo, and though there is no Kacipo Bible, they are hungry to know the Word of God.
Latest Prayer Updates:
Pray for wisdom and guidance as AIM seeks to be put into service to foster a reproducing, indigenous, Christ centered church among the Kachipo of South Sudan. This task faces many impossible obstacles, but we believe in a God who specializes in the impossible.
We are about to start the New Testament Translation for the Suri (Kacipo-Balesi).
In the last few weeks Pastor Dunyi from Mewun and Matthias Feurer from Wycliffe Ethiopia (who has been working for several years amongst the Suri (Kacipo-Balesi) in Ethiopia, met in Addis Ababa (Ethiopia) to lay the foundation for the Bible Translation. Pray for us, as we are putting a translation team together. May God provide committed mother tongue translators. Pray for more finances. Pray also for spiritual and physical protection.