Photo of the Week by Gary Fallesen: Hiking into the Atlantika Mountains along the border between Nigeria and Cameron.
Climbing For Christ has ministered to a primitive people living in the uninviting Koma Hills in northeastern Nigeria near the Cameroon border since visiting in 2011. Pastor Chris Joseph of partner ministry Lives Aglow completed his seventh visit into the Atlantika Mountains in September 2015. Atlantika is said to mean “Allah hasn’t yet arrived” in the Kanuri language. The Koma people have maintained their own folk religion despite being surrounded by Muslims in one of the 12 states that have implemented Islamic law.
The Koma people reportedly fled into the mountains in the second half of the 19th century to escape taxes imposed by a colonial government. The Koma were a forgotten people until a schoolteacher from India who was working for the government rediscovered this people group in 1986. Missionaries began to do outreach among the Koma, establishing some churches. About 30 percent of the 55,000 Koma living in Nigeria are reported to be professing Christians, according to the Joshua Project. However, most still cling to animist practices.
While Christian ministries are claiming to make in-roads with this remote group, the Muslims are not to be outdone. “Islamic organizations have their camps in Koma, where they work hard to convert as many as possible,” according to Nigeria’s Sunday Trust
Pray for the truth to be revealed to and recognized by the Koma people.
“And he said to them, ‘The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few. Therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest.’” – Luke 10:2 (ESV)
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