The Alagwa of Tanzania

Population: 40,000

Location and Background: The Alagwa live in in a geographically remote area at 4,000-6,000’ elevation in the hills and mountains of central Tanzania. They live in 15 villages, and although the Bubu river runs through the lower lands, the  higher regions suffer from lack  of water and they often must walk miles to find water to meet the needs of their families.

History: The Alagwa are a Cushitic group, who migrated south from the horn of Africa. They believe they are descended from Habesh, who was the 10th generation from Noah’s son Ham, and are still living with the curse put on their ancestor.

Culture: The Alagwa are subsistence farmers, growing maize and millet. They also keep cows, goats and sheep. They are very community oriented, living in houses made of burned brick with roofs of thatched grass. The Alagwa speak both Alagwaisa and Kiswahili.

Religion: A tribal legend says that once when some Alagwa visited Mecca they were rejected by the Muslims for having ‘no religion’—only animistic beliefs. They later embraced Islam, so that now well over 90% are Muslims. However, they seamlessly blend their traditional beliefs with their Islamic ones. Allah, Mungu and Lala’a are all used to refer to God. So although they are called Muslims, their beliefs and practices are strongly steeped in their traditional ways of life.

 

Latest Prayer Updates:

Repent and surrender

“ For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms” Eph 6 ,12
There seem to be spiritual battles raging in many Alagwa communities. Pray for those who are being deceived by the pull of the witchdoctor and “medicine” of the religious leaders. May their eyes be opened to see that they are just enslaving themselves, not getting true healing. Pray for one disciple particularly who has been using “medicine” from the religious leader. May she repent and surrender to Jesus even more fully than before.

God is Stronger!

Praise God for his faithful show of power in one community. A disciple was faced with a close family member seeking to put curse on her and her children leading to death. Whilst initially terrified, she was encouraged by understanding from God’s word that this was a spiritual battle and that God is stronger than Satan! The family member tried two different witchdoctors, and was not able to curse her. She later said that because she belongs to God, she is no longer afraid. May this demonstration of God’s power impact many in her community. Please also join her in praying that this family member will also come to know and follow Jesus.

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