Abaza in Russia


Population
Main Language
Largest Religion
Christian
Evangelical
Progress
Progress Gauge

Expanded PDF Profile

Introduction / History

2,500 years ago the Greek historian, Herodotus, notes that Greek seafarers encountered a tribe named the Abaza along the eastern shores of the Black Sea. The descendants of the Abaza later migrated northeastward into the Caucasus Mountains and became fiercely Muslim over the past 1000 years. Many died in the Caucasus Wars with the Russian Empire in the middle of the 19th Century.

Abaza towns include Kara-Pago, Kubina, Psikh, El 'burgan, Inzhich-Chukun, Koi-dan, Abaza-Khabl ', Malo-Abazinka, Tapanta, Krasnovostochni, Novokuvinski, Starokuvinski, Abazakt and Ap-sua.


What Are Their Lives Like?

A war-like people, the Abaza have known little grace. Their ancient language is fascinating—it functions with 63 consonant sounds and only two vowels! For an outsider, it's definitely a mouthful of intense sounds.


What Are Their Beliefs?

The Abaza people are Sunni Muslims who believe that the supreme God, Allah, spoke through his prophet, Mohammed, and taught mankind how to live a righteous life through the Koran and the Hadith. To live a righteous life, you must utter the Shahada (a statement of faith), pray five times a day facing Mecca, fast from sunup to sundown during the month of Ramadan, give alms to the poor, and make a pilgrimage to Mecca if you have the means. Muslims are prohibited from drinking alcohol, eating pork, gambling, stealing, slandering, and making idols. They gather for corporate prayer on Friday afternoons at a mosque, their place of worship.

The two main holidays for Sunni Muslims are Eid al Fitr, the breaking of the monthly fast and Eid al Adha, the celebration of Abraham’s willingness to sacrifice his son to Allah.

Sunni religious practices are staid and simple. They believe that Allah has pre-determined our fates; they minimize free will.

In most of the Muslim world, people depend on the spirit world for their daily needs since they regard Allah as too distant. Allah may determine their eternal salvation, but the spirits determine how well we live in our daily lives. For that reason, they must appease the spirits. They often use charms and amulets to help them with spiritual forces.


What Are Their Needs?

There are few known believers among the Abaza. Pray for these courageous ones, who are carriers of the desperately-needed grace of Jesus for their people. When one understands in one's own heart language that "God in Christ has forgiven me..." it's so much more possible to "be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving one another, just as God in Christ has forgiven me." The Fruit of the Spirit—love, joy, peace, patience, kindness...—can start to grow and spread throughout the culture.


Prayer Points

Pray for a fledgling effort--which is barely underway--to begin translating portions of the New Testament into the difficult Abaza language.

Pray for the few followers of Jesus among the Abaza to embody the forgiveness and kindness of Jesus to all whom they meet.


Scripture Prayers for the Abaza in Russia.


References

http://www.globalprayerdigest.org/issue/day/2017/03/30

http://www.globalprayerdigest.org/issue/day/2014/03/26


Profile Source:   Joshua Project  
Expanded PDF Profile

Additional Info
Global Prayer Digest: 2013-03-03
Global Prayer Digest: 2014-03-26
Global Prayer Digest: 2017-03-30
People Name General Abaza
People Name in Country Abaza
Population this Country 45,000
Population all Countries 74,000
Total Countries 3
Indigenous Yes
Progress Scale 1
Unreached Yes
Frontier People Group Yes
GSEC 1  (per PeopleGroups.org)
Pioneer Workers Needed 1
Alternate Names Abazinian; Apswa
People ID 10125
ROP3 Code 100011
Country Russia
Region Europe, Eastern and Eurasia
Continent Asia
10/40 Window No
National Bible Society Website
Persecution Rank Not ranked
Location in Country Karachayevo-Cherkesiya and Stavropol’skiy Kray.   Source:  Ethnologue 2016
Country Russia
Region Europe, Eastern and Eurasia
Continent Asia
10/40 Window No
National Bible Society Website
Persecution Rank Not ranked
Location in Country Karachayevo-Cherkesiya and Stavropol’skiy Kray..   Source:  Ethnologue 2016
Map of Abaza in Russia Ethnolinguistic map or other map

Primary Language Abaza (45,000 speakers)
Language Code abq   Ethnologue Listing
Language Written Yes   ScriptSource Listing
Total Languages 1
Primary Language Abaza (45,000 speakers)
Language Code abq   Ethnologue Listing
Total Languages 1
People Groups Speaking Abaza

Primary Language:  Abaza

Bible Translation Status  (Years)
Bible-Portions Yes  (2019-2021)
Bible-New Testament No
Bible-Complete No
Possible Print Bibles
Amazon
World Bibles
Forum Bible Agencies
National Bible Societies
World Bible Finder
Virtual Storehouse
Resource Type Resource Name Source
None reported  
Primary Religion: Islam
Major Religion Percent
Buddhism
0.00 %
Christianity  (Evangelical 0.03 %)
0.10 %
Ethnic Religions
0.00 %
Hinduism
0.00 %
Islam
96.90 %
Non-Religious
3.00 %
Other / Small
0.00 %
Unknown
0.00 %
Christian Segments Percent
Anglican
0.0 %
Independent
20.0 %
Orthodox
30.0 %
Other Christian
0.0 %
Protestant
20.0 %
Roman Catholic
30.0 %
Photo Source Lawrence Jatker 
Map Source People Group location: IMB. Map geography: ESRI / GMI. Map design: Joshua Project.  
Profile Source Joshua Project  
Data Sources Data is compiled from various sources. Read more