"…to the praise of the glory of His grace…" Ephesians 1:6

Specifics for Africa

The Unreached of Africa
Much has been achieved; Christians are numbered in their millions, but serious challenges must be met, and the Church in Africa and world-wide must be mobilized to meet them

Much of Africa is within the 10/40 Window area

1 The Imazighen, or Berber of North Africa

2 The Tuareg (Tamasheq) are related to the Berber, but have a unique culture and live in the central Sahara Desert

3 The West Atlantic cluster with 6.4 million speaking 77 languages and dialects

4 The Mande peoples live mainly in Africa west of Nigeria, and are in a majority in Mali and Guinea

5 The Soninke-Bozo peoples — mainly of Senegal and Mali are 1.6 million with only a handful of believers

6 The Songhai-Zarma peoples — 4.7 million living mainly in Mali and Niger and speaking 18 languages and dialects

7 The Fulbe (Pulaar, Fulani) number 20 million in 40 or so distinct ethnic groups speaking related dialects

Overview: Geography, Peoples, Economy, Politics

Religious freedom has increased over much of Africa during the 1990s, but persecution of Christians by Muslims has also increased in Egypt, Sudan, northern Nigeria and the Comores.

Religions Population % Adherents Ann.Gr.
Christian 48.37 379.4m +2.83%
Muslim 41.32 324.1m +2.53%
Traditional ethnic 8.74 68.6m -0.97%
non-Religious/other 1.15 9.0m +4.85%
Hindu 0.22 1.71m +1.42%
Baha’i 0.19 1.47m +2.32%
Jewish 0.01 96,400 +1.02%
Christians Denom. Affil.% ,000 Ann.Gr.
Protestant 1,927 12.59 98,768 +4.2%
Independent 13,137 9.99 78,360 +3.9%
Anglican 36 4.12 32,329 +5.2%
Catholic 63 15.10 118,423 +2.6%
Orthodox 54 5.96 46,727 +0.5%
Marginal 164 0.45 3,506 +6.0%
Unaffiliated 3.65 28,664 n.a.
Doubly affiliated -3.46 -27,119 n.a.

Missionaries from Africa

12,442 in 620 agencies with 3,126 in other lands.

Missionaries to Africa

17,737 expatriates in 620 agencies.

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Area 30,212,000 sq.km; 22.3% of the surface area of the world’s 238 countries.

Population (2000) 784,315,000 +2.41%AGR

African 77.9%; Arab 17.3%; Imazighen (Berber) 2.6%; European 1.1%; Mixed race 0.7%; Asian 0.4%.

Languages 2,110; 30.5% of the world’s total. Official languages Arabic in North Africa (7 countries). Elsewhere French (22), English (21), Portuguese (4), Spanish (1). The increasing use of European languages in education is at the expense of local languages. In only 6 nations is an African language officially used as the main means of conducting the nation’s business.

Bible translation Africa is the greatest remaining challenge for Bible translation with existing openings for missionary translators. Languages with Scriptures 130Bi 237NT 250por. There is work in progress in 373 and a definite need for translators in 297 more. This latter number could rise to 1,290 after careful field research.

Africa’s economy has stagnated for 40 years; many countries have become poorer, a few have made progress. HDI is a measure of the quality of life of 174 nations. Of the bottom 40 in this list, 33 are in Africa. Income/person $660 (2% of USA). Only 1.7% of the world’s GNP is generated in Africa.

Black Africa’s isolation from the rest of the world ended in the ‘Scramble for Africa’ by the European colonial powers in the 19th Century.