Nigeria (MNN) — Many Nigerians say they do not feel safe anywhere in their country.
An attack on a Nigerian train killed at least eight passengers and 168 remain missing. Some have been kidnapped for ransom. Attackers surrounded the train, and the police on board ran out of ammunition.
In particular, attacks by Fulani have increased in recent months. Fulani militants attacked one group of Christians on April 4 while they held an annual spring festival. Ten were killed, and 19 others received wounds.
Greg Kelley with World Mission says, “They are trying to take land. They’re targeting areas that are mainly Christians to confiscate farmland and kill people. We’re hearing horrific stories, but it’s really nothing new. It just happens to be intensifying right now.”
The Fulani people have a history of aggression against their neighbors. When they first migrated into West Africa, they conquered large swaths of territory in the name of Islam.
But Kelley says the Fulani represent one of the most strategic mission fields in the world. “When we consider unreached people groups, they’re all a priority. They all are at the heart of the Gospel. But there are certain people groups that we consider gateway people groups. What that means is that they have unique influence because of their culture, because of their history, or because of their language.”
How to pray
World Mission distributes audio Bibles in many Fulani dialects. Ask God to work among them.
And pray that the peace of God’s kingdom would come to Nigeria. The violence makes mission work in Northern Nigeria much more difficult, Kelley says. “We’re constantly moving missionaries out of harm’s way. How useful are they if the Fulani or the Boko Haram are killing them?”
The header photo shows Fulani people. (Photo courtesy of World Mission)