Central Kurd in United States

Main Language
Largest Religion
Progress Gauge

Introduction / History

The Kurds are one of the largest ethno-linguistic people group in the world without their own nation. The homeland of the Kurds is in the Middle East, northwestern Iran, southeastern Turkey and the northern sections of Iraq and Syria. After WWII Kurds began to migrate from the violence and turmoil of their native land to countries in the West. About 10,000 central Kurds now make their home in the USA. Many live in San Diego and Memphis, TN. Some Kurdish families in the USA now speak English in their homes while others still speak Central Kurdish, Sorani. The majority of Kurds speak Northern Kurdish or Kurmanji. Kurds in and from Iraq speak Sorani. Sorani is written in Arabic script while Kurmanji is written in Latin letters. About one sixth of the Kurds in the USA speak Sorani.

What Are Their Lives Like?

The traditional occupation of the Kurds in their homeland was that of nomadic herding of goats and sheep. In the USA, they have had to take on new jobs such as construction, owning restaurants, small businesses and in manufacturing. Kurdish parents encourage their boys and girls to obtain a college education. Family is an essential part of Kurdish culture. The relationship between family members is close. The clan and community are more important than the individual in traditional Kurdish society. The Kurdish father is the traditional head of the home. Traditionally a Kurdish man and woman in love could not marry without both their families' permission. That policy is changing due to the individualistic nature of American society. It has always been unthinkable for an unmarried Kurdish couple to live together as Americans typically do. A woman in Kurdistan was not considered an adult unless she was married and had children. In the USA a Kurdish woman may pursue a professional career and not marry. Kurdish women and girls are supposed to dress modestly. Dressing immodestly would dishonor her family. Kurdish families in the USA often have more children than the typical American family. American Kurds tend to live in nuclear families while in Kurdistan, the land of the Kurds, they lived in extended families up to four generations under the one roof. Respecting older people is integral part of Kurdish culture. Hospitality and family honor are significant features. Many young people have started to put their own interests before that of their family and community. American school systems train young people to be independent. Kurdish families, who have moved to Western countries, have faced pressures to change. Maintaining Kurdish values and adapting to their new Western country is a difficult balancing act every Kurdish person living in the USA must face.

What Are Their Beliefs?

About 75% of the world's Kurds claim to be Sunni Muslims. Smaller Kurdish groups include Shia, Sufi, Christian and Yazidi. Sunni Kurds tend to be more tolerate of other faiths than other Muslims. Sunni Kurds try to obey the teachings of the Koran and the prophet Mohammad. They believe that by following the Five Pillars of Islam that they will attain heaven when they die. However, Allah, the supreme God of the universe, determines who enters paradise. Sunnis pray five times a day facing Mecca. They fast the month of Ramadan. They attend mosque services on Friday. If a Muslim has the means, he or she will make a pilgrimage to Mecca once in his or her lifetime. Muslims are also prohibited from drinking alcohol, eating pork, gambling, stealing, using deceit, slandering, and making idols. 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. The Kurdish New Year on March 21 is celebrated as a major holiday by all Kurds regardless of religion.

What Are Their Needs?

The Kurds living in the USA must understand that biblical Christianity is not just a Western religion. They must see that their good works and devotion to family will not gain them the forgiveness of their sins or eternal life. Newly arrived Kurds need to learn English and new job skills in order to fit into their new nation.

Prayer Points

* Scripture Prayers for the Kurd, Central in United States.

Pray the Lord leads American believers to build friendships with Kurds and tell them about their Savior. Pray that God creates a hunger for the Bible and spiritual truth in the heart of the Kurdish people living in the USA. Ask God to raise up a Disciple Making Movement among American Kurds in this decade. Pray that Kurdish leaders are willing to investigate the claims of Jesus Christ.

Profile Source:   Joshua Project  

Additional Info
Global Prayer Digest: 2011-05-23
Global Prayer Digest: 2012-05-12
People Name General Kurd, Central
People Name in Country Kurd, Central
Natural Name Central Kurd
Pronunciation kerd
Population this Country 40,000
Population all Countries 8,242,000
Total Countries 5
Indigenous No
Progress Scale 1
Unreached Yes
Frontier People Group Yes
GSEC 1  (per PeopleGroups.org)
Pioneer Workers Needed 1
Alternate Names Central Kurd; Kurdish; Sorani
People ID 11126
ROP3 Code 101922
Country United States
Region America, North and Caribbean
Continent North America
10/40 Window No
National Bible Society Website
Persecution Rank Not ranked
Location in Country Nashville   Source:  Global Gates 2021
Country United States
Region America, North and Caribbean
Continent North America
10/40 Window No
National Bible Society Website
Persecution Rank Not ranked
Location in Country Nashville.   Source:  Global Gates 2021
Primary Language Kurdish, Central (40,000 speakers)
Language Code ckb   Ethnologue Listing
Language Written Yes   ScriptSource Listing
Total Languages 1
Primary Language Kurdish, Central (40,000 speakers)
Language Code ckb   Ethnologue Listing
Total Languages 1
People Groups Speaking Kurdish, Central

Primary Language:  Kurdish, Central

Bible Translation Status  (Years)
Bible-Portions Yes  (1894-1993)
Bible-New Testament Yes  (1994-2011)
Bible-Complete Yes  (2016-2017)
Bible-NT Audio Online
Bible-NT Text Online
Possible Print Bibles
World Bibles
Forum Bible Agencies
National Bible Societies
World Bible Finder
Virtual Storehouse
Resource Type Resource Name
Audio Recordings Audio Bible teaching (GRN)
Audio Recordings DAVAR Partners recording, complete Bible
Audio Recordings Online New Testament (FCBH)
Audio Recordings Online Scripture / NT
Audio Recordings Oral Bible stories in Kurdish, Central
Audio Recordings StoryRunners Oral Bible Stories
Film / Video God's Story Video
Film / Video Indigitube.tv Video / Animation
Film / Video Jesus Film: view in Kurdish, Central
Film / Video King of Glory movie
Film / Video LUMO film of Gospels
Film / Video Magdalena (Jesus Film Project)
Film / Video Sorani Contextual Fellowship (Farsi)
Film / Video Sorani Contextual Fellowship (Kurdish)
Film / Video Story of Jesus for Children (JF Project)
General Got Questions Ministry
General Kurdish Ministry Resources
Text / Printed Matter Bible Gateway Scripture
Text / Printed Matter Bible: Kurdish (Sorani) Standard Version
Text / Printed Matter Jesus Messiah comic book
Primary Religion: Islam
Major Religion Percent
0.00 %
Christianity  (Evangelical 0.00 %)
0.00 %
Ethnic Religions
0.00 %
0.00 %
100.00 %
0.00 %
Other / Small
0.00 %
0.00 %
Christian Segments Percent
Other Christian
Roman Catholic
Photo Source TheKurds.net 
Map Source TheKurds.net  
Profile Source Joshua Project  
Data Sources Data is compiled from various sources. Read more


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