Celebrating World Penguin Day?! Well, did you know that Africa is home to around 55,000 penguins? African penguins, living on the coasts of Namibia and South Africa are one of the few species of penguin that don’t have to deal with freezing temperatures and Antarctic snow – in fact, sunburn can be an issue for them!
So when you think about Africa, and assuming that you’re not thinking about penguins, what are you picturing? Jungle? Desert landscapes? Scrub land? Safaris through Africa’s rift valley? The continent of Africa is as big as China, India, the United States of America and most of Europe – put together! The hottest average temperature on Earth is in Ethiopia at 33.9°c, Africa is also home to the world record temperature of 57.8°c recorded in Libya in 1922. The lowest temperature recorded ever in Africa was -24°c in Morocco in 1935. Africa is home to dense jungle, snow capped mountains, rain forest, savannah and even in some places, a climate not too dissimilar to Britain!
Maybe, Africa is more diverse than you’ve imagined.
Of the 3700 different people groups, around 1000 have yet to hear the gospel, and certainly have no opportunity to be discipled.
And that’s even before we get on to Africa’s peoples. In Africa’s 58 countries there are around 3700 different, distinct people groups. As a comparison, in Europe’s 51 countries, there are around 1,800 different people groups. In Africa, there are so many distinctly different cultures, different ways of doing life, different languages, dialects, foods, the list could go on. When you think of Africa’s people perhaps many of us are guilty of picturing large African churches and classifying the whole continent as the same, and as reached with the gospel.
But Africa is more diverse than you’ve imagined.
Within one country in Africa, one people group can be holding the church services of our imaginations, whilst another has never heard of the Jesus that others are worshipping. Of the 3700 different people groups, around 1000 have yet to hear the gospel, and certainly have no opportunity to be discipled. That’s around 300 million people living and dying without hearing of the salvation that Jesus offers.
Maybe that’s more surprising than penguins in Africa?
If you’d like to be part of reaching those 300 million with the gospel, then why not check out our pray, give and go pages? We can all be a part of God’s mission plan.