The far southern region of the Philippines is predominantly Muslim, and of the various Muslim groups, the Tausug are the most dominant. They live primarily on the Sulu Archipelago, having migrated there from Mindanao.
The Tausug sense of community is weak, and territorial units exist only at the family and village levels. To promote relationships among villages, the mosque serves as the place of community and intermarriage among residents is promoted. The largest territorial unit is the kauman and is led by a headman who is the highest authority of the area.
Generally, the Taūsug are devoted Muslims; however, many pre-Islamic animistic beliefs still pervade their religious culture. They believe spirits inhabit the environment and each person has four souls that depart the body after death.
Engagement // What’s Happening Now
Asia Pacific Media is an evangelistic media ministry that utilizes film, radio, and print to spread the gospel across Asia Pacific. They are based in the capital city of Manila, and their gospel-centered message spreads throughout the Philippines. Pray that their work will reach the Muslim Taūsug and that many will turn to Christ through their message.
Sustainability // The Bigger Story
Of the over 101 million people in the Philippines, approximately 5 million are unreached and are concentrated in the southern islands. These southern Muslim peoples have a clear religious disconnect from the rest of the Philippines. They are the Nineveh of the Philippines. The Jonah Initiative is an effort set forth by Global Initiative to equip and empower evangelists to plant churches and preach the gospel to Muslims.
Partnership // Move Beyond
- Pray that Asia Pacific Media is able to extend its reach to the Taūsug and beyond, to all Muslim people groups in Asia Pacific.
- Pray they are receptive to the message presented by Asia Pacific Media or by church planters and evangelists.
- Pray that God will beckon believers, as he beckoned Jonah, to go to the difficult places and share the good news of Jesus.
- Pray for those who are going to places such as the Sulu Archipelago to be a witness to the Muslims there and that the Holy Spirit would empower them to display the love and power of God.