Day 12. Arab Speaking Algerian in Algeria (al-JEER-ee-un)
Algeria is in North Africa on the Mediterranean coast between Morocco and Tunisia. The indigenous Berber peoples became Christians in the first and second century, with a history of martyrs under Roman rule, followed by centuries of violent conflict with Roman “Christians” and invading Vandals who were Arian “Christians”. The Bible was never translated into any Berber language, though St. Augustine was a Berber.
When Muslim Arabs invaded in the 7th century, the Berbers became Sunni Muslims and many intermarried with the Arabs. France colonized Algeria in 1830, imposing the French language. However, Arab control returned with national independence in 1960. Algerians are well educated, but many unemployed adults immigrate to France and elsewhere to work and send money back to their families. French is still a language of government, along with Arabic, in Algeria.
Berber-speaking Algerians number over 12 million. In 1980 the Kabyles, the largest tribe, staged a “Berber Spring” which was violently put down by the Arab government, but they were granted permission to use their language and even teach it in schools by 1995. Kabyle was voted an official language of Algeria in 2016. This tribe has had a significant movement to Jesus. The Injil (New Testament) is now in Algerian Arabic and the complete Scriptures in Kabyle Berber.
Prayers for the Algerian Families:
Lord, open ways for global witnesses to bless Algerian Arab families and communities in both Algeria and France. Send Your Spirit to open their hearts to the love of Jesus and to read and follow Your Word.
Lord, help the Kabyle Berber believers to demonstrate Your love to their Arab neighbors, raise up strong and bold leaders to start Jesus movements not only in Kabyle Berber but also in the Algerian Arabic language.
Lord, bless Algerian government leaders that they would look favorably on believers and the printing and distribution of Your Word. Send visions and dreams of Jesus to those earnestly praying and seeking the right path to You.
God’s beautiful invitation to Algerian Arabs: The hand of the LORD was upon me there, and He said to me, “Get up and go out to the plain, and there I will speak to you. (Ez. 3:22)