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Pray for the Rendille people

Who are the Rendille?

The Rendille live in the Kaisut Desert east of Lake Turkana, northern Kenya as semi-nomadic pastoralists. There are two distinctive groups: the northern Rendille, who herd camels, and the southern Rendille who herd cattle and are related to the Samburu with whom they intermarry. They live in ‘manyattas’ or homesteads of 70-100 houses, dress in bright colours and wear beads. The men undergo various rites of passage to bring them into adulthood; young girls are often spoken for at an early age and marry very young.

What do they believe?

They practice a traditional, animistic religion. There is a place in every village called ‘nahapo’ where men gather every night to pray around a fire, which is never to be allowed to go out. They pray to the moon, which plays an important part in their religion as well as animal sacrifices and worshipping ancestral spirits. They consider themselves descendants of Jews, and practice a traditional Passover-type ceremony.

What is being done to reach them?

In 1982 the Swanepoel’s began living in Korr among the Rendille. During their 33 years there they created an alphabet for the unwritten Rendille language, which is leading to a translation of the New Testament. They were also involved in developing water resources, two primary schools, and one secondary school. Since then, short termers have gone out to support their work and an evangelical church has been established by Rendille Christians.

Prayer from AIM’s Daily Prayer: shares, “We have just lost a Rendille pastor, who was a sign language Bible translator. He was so loved and respected in the community and many are mourning the loss. The biggest prayer request is for his wife and his three small boys. The Rendille want to come alongside of this family, support them, and love them but they aren’t sure how to best go about doing it. We are praying God uses this experience to open our eyes to how to care for people in grief, and that God would draw more people to himself.”

The Rendille are a semi-nomadic unreached people group living in the Kaisut Desert east of Lake Turkana in northern Kenya. writes: “Lately, there have been many sad things happening in the Rendille town of Korr. Many deaths, illnesses, hard marriage situations and more. Tonight a momma said, ‘Are we being punished? Why has 2019 been so hard? When will blessing come?’ Please pray for the Rendille. Pray that they cling to Jesus our hope. Pray that even through these hard challenges that seem to keep coming, people see Jesus. That people would turn to the Church for guidance and help and that the Church would welcome them.”

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