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The Jongor or Migaami people live in the Guera region of southcentral Chad. The Jongor make their living by farming and raising animals. They live in a remote section of the mountains that is not easily accessed by other peoples. The Jongor speak their own language called Migaama. Only a few gospel recordings are available in Migaama. There are few if any followers of Christ among the Jongor. Chad became independent from France in 1960. Unfortunately, since that date Chad has seen a series of civil wars, the assassinations and arrests of political leaders, coups and wars with Libya and Sudan. A quarter of Chad's income is aid from the UN, NGOs, France, China, and the USA. International agencies consider Chad to be a failed state. Less than 40% of the people are able to read and write. Life expectancy in Chad is under 50 years old. In 2003 Chad became an oil exporting nation. Most of the revenue from the oil went to buying weapons and for the salaries of the Chadian military, not for the welfare of the Chadian people.
The long dry season and conditions of life have had an impact on the Migaami people. The Jongor work the land and cultivate millet, sorghum, maize, beans and peanuts. The Jongor also raise goats and chickens to supplement their diets. They trade their surplus of grains and peanuts to provide for their families what they cannot make for themselves such as cell phones and appliances. A few of the Jongor obtain college degrees and work in professional jobs such as teaching, public offices and nursing. Draughts are common in the region where the Jongor live. If the rains fail, the Jongor can face starvation. The Jongor live in villages ruled by elders. Families arrange marriages. Girls often marry at a young age. A man may have up to four wives if he can afford them. The Jongor tend to marry within their ethnic group. Most parents have a large number of children. It is common for many children to not live past their tenth birthday due to the lack of modern medicine and clean water.
The Migaama believed in and served the Margay spirits. These spirits are their intermediaries between men and the supreme Creator God, "Mella." For a long time, they resisted Islam. Once the Arabs had conquered the valleys, it was more difficult to resist, though some fled to the mountains. Later, French colonialists put pressure on them to abandon their mountain dwellings, and they came in contact with the Muslims again. At that time Muslims forced them to abandon their animistic practices. Today, most of them call themselves Sunni Muslims. Though there are some remnants of the 'Margi' practices, the teachings of Islam has mostly replaced the traditional 'Margi' practices. Some of the Migaami have shown great interest in the Christian message. Though the current Chadian constitution guarantees freedom of religion, social pressure is great to remain Muslims. Today 'Margi' worshippers, Muslims and Christians of other tribes live peaceably together. Cultural identity seems to be more important than 'religious' beliefs.
Solar panels can bring electricity to the Jongor. Teams of Christians can drill wells to provide the Jongor with a steady supply of clean water. Medical personnel can help the Jongor with their physical needs. Most of all, the Jongor need to hear and understand the claims of Jesus Christ. He alone can forgive their sins and grant them the hope of eternal life.
Ask the Lord to send workers to meet their physical and spiritual needs. Pray a strong church movement would be established among the Jongor in this decade. Pray that the Bible and other Christian resources to be translated into the Migaama language. Pray that Jongor parents would be able to provide for their children and that their children would be able to attend school.