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Saho, Irob in Eritrea

Saho, Irob

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Saho, Irob in Eritrea map
Population [2] Language Religion % Christian % Evangl Online NT Jesus Film Progress
129,000 Saho Islam 30.00 % 0.25 % No   

Saho, Irob in Eritrea

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Introduction / History
The Saho homeland stretches south from the Red Sea in Eritrea into Ethiopia. Its western border is flanked by the Tigre and Tigrinya people groups and its eastern border by the Afar. It was my privilege to personally interact with the Saho in the city of Foro near the Red Sea, as well as at Adi Keyh and Sen'afe near the Ethiopian border.

Foro is a 30-minute drive from Massawa on the road to Tio. The road is good, and Saho villages have sprung up along it to have access to schools and clinics. The Saho comprise more than 50 percent of Foro's inhabitants.

The Saho are farmers. Foro is located in the middle of a valley at a former reservoir built by the Italians during their colonial rule. Irrigation provides Saho farmers with beautiful fields of maize that extend toward the mountains as far as the eye can see. Looking north toward the Red Sea, a person cannot help but marvel at the hundreds of acres of maize.

A village of 250 homes is on the eastern outskirts of Foro. The houses are well-built and the village is clean. The residents' civic pride is evident. This village seems ideal for language learning, even for those living in Foro, a ten-minute walk away.

I visited Adi Keyh on Wednesday, a full-blown market day. A wood market is operated primarily by Saho. Camels were lying down with two racks of wood beside them.

Next to the wood market is a row of shops. Many of them are operated by Saho merchants. An outgoing, aggressive businessman sold me some popcorn and a prayer hat. Another shop owner, who specializes in selling honey, spoke excellent English and seemed comfortable with a stranger. It appears these two men are open to a gospel witness.

Saho make up about 25 percent of Adi Keyh's population. However, many small Saho villages are located east and south toward Sen'afe. Sen'afe is about 45 percent Saho, but the number grows to 60 percent when surrounding villages are included. Five mosques are in Sen'afe, and most Muslims are Saho. A large valley stretches to the northwest, all the way to Tsorona, and approximately nine out of 10 farmers are Saho.

Prayer Points
* The Saho community is fertile soil for sowing the seed of the Gospel. Pray for a move of the Holy Spirit among the Saho people.
* By contextualizing his message, a Christian worker could live among the Saho and provide them with an adequate witness of the Gospel. Pray for the Lord to raise up laborers.
* Pray for completion of Bible translation in this people group's primary language.

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Prayer Links
Global Prayer Digest: 2009-01-01
Global Prayer Digest: 2012-01-18
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Country: Eritrea
Continent: Africa
Region: Africa, East and Southern
Persecution Rank:6 (Only top 50 ranked, 1 = highest persecution ranking)
10/40 Window: Yes
Location in Country:Debub, Semenawi K’eyih Bahri, Debubawi K’eyih Bahri regions.
(Source: Ethnologue 2016)
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Linguistic Map:Ethnologue language map
  Peoples [3]
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People Name in Country: Saho, Irob
People Name General: Saho, Irob
Alternate People Names:
ROP3 Code: 108519
Joshua Project People ID: 14641
Indigenous: Yes
Population in Country: 129,000
Population all Countries: 180,000
Least-Reached: No
Affinity Bloc: Horn of Africa Peoples
People Cluster: Afar
People Name General: Saho, Irob
Ethnic Code: CMT33d
Ethnic Relationships: Affinity Bloc -> People Cluster -> Peoples Ethnicity Tree
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Primary Language: Saho (129,000 Speakers)
Language Code (ISO): ssy    Ethnologue Listing
Total Languages: 1
Religion [4]
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Primary Religion: Islam
Major Religions:
Buddhism0.00 % 
Christianity30.00 %(Evangelical: 0.25 %)
Ethnic Religions0.00 % 
Hinduism0.00 % 
Islam65.00 % 
Non-Religious5.00 % 
Other / Small0.00 % 
Unknown0.00 % 
Christianity Segments:
Anglican0.00 %
Independent10.00 %
Protestant25.00 %
Orthodox65.00 %
Other Christian0.00 %
Roman Catholic0.00 %
(Evangelicals distributed across Christianity segments)
Progress Indicators [5]
Progress Scale[6]   Evangelicals have only a very small representation among all who claim to be Christians.
Least-Reached: No
GSEC Status:Level 1   Less than 2% Evangelical. Some evangelical resources available, but no active church planting within past 2 years
Bible Translation Status
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Bible Portions: 1956-1964
New Testament: None Reported
Complete Bible: None Reported
Possible Bible Sources: Forum of Bible Agencies
 World Bible Finder
 World Christian Resource Directory
 Gospel Go
Ministry Resources [7]
Audio RecordingsMegaVoice Audio Bible and Stories
Audio RecordingsAudio Bible teaching (GRN)
Film / VideoJesus film: view in Saho
Ministry Activity
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Description: Register your ministry activity among this people group. Contact the Adopt-A-People Clearinghouse and Unleashed for the Unreached to learn about others that might be focused on this people group.
Data Notes
Data Sources

Saho, Irob in Eritrea

Global                 Global
  Affinity Bloc             Global  
People Cluster
    Afar     Africa, East and Southern    
      Saho, Irob Eritrea    
            People-by-Country (Profile)          
            Saho, Irob in Eritrea          
      Religion Language  
      Islam     Saho  
    All Religions                              

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