The Sama – Badjao live in the Philippines but there is much debate regarding where they originated from; some believe that they are originally from Sumatra or the South Sea Islands. The Sama – Badjao live as farmers and make most of their income from Copra – the meat found inside the coconut which produces coconut oil. Most of the Sama – Bajdao live along the sea in one of three dwellings; stilt houses, houseboats and raised houses. The name Sama – Badjao means “man of the seas”. Their lives revolve around living near the sea. The Sama – Bajdao believe in keeping close family ties and at times live together with extended families. Most of the Sama – Badjao identify as Muslim but almost all of the Sama – Badjao hold animistic beliefs and believe in trying to appease the ancient spirits through sacrifice and offerings.
Engagement // What’s Happening Now
The story of Nelfa is one which brings hope. As a child through Asia’s Little One’s, she was able to attend school and find the love of Jesus. Read the article “Nelfa’s story: I Did It” to hear how having an education and encountering Jesus changed her life. Just like Nelfa, there are thousands of children within Sama – Badjao communities waiting to hear the message of hope and salvation found in Jesus.
Sustainability // The Bigger Story
Asia Pacific Theological Seminary (APTS). was established in 1964 in Manila and moved to Baguio in 1985. Since then, APTS has trained and equipped hundreds of men and women to propel the church in Asia. Pray that these leaders and pastors coming from the Seminary will engage the Sama – Badja.
Partnership // Move Beyond
Please spend a few minutes in prayer for:
- The Sama – Badjao find their identity in the idea that they are “a people nobody wants”, pray that they may know that they are wanted by their creator and have a secure identity in Him.
- Less than 10% of the Sama – Badjao school age children are enrolled in schools. Pray for workers to live among and reach out to Sama – Badjao children.
- Pray for the students of APTS, that they may plant churches in regions where Sama – Badjao live.
- Pray for Sama Badjao believers, that they may be strengthened and emboldened to share the gospel.
Information and Photo from Joshua Project