Introduction / History The Sinhalese are the largest people group in Sri Lanka. Some have emigrated to New Zealand. Buddhism has grown in New Zealand since the arrival of the Sri Lankans. The United Sri Lanka Association in Wellington and Auckland mainly consists of Sinhalese Buddhists.
Sri Lankans came from Ceylon (as Sri Lanka used to be called in the later nineteenth century) to New Zealand. They came looking for gold. Only a few of them were in New Zealand then. About that time Ceylon became the biggest supplier of tea to New Zealand.
In the beginning of the latter half of the twentieth century, students came from Ceylon to New Zealand. Later, problems in Ceylon led to more emigrating with some coming to New Zealand. The Sri Lankan civil war led to more Sri Lankans including the Sinhalese coming to live.
Where are they located? They live mainly in Wellington and Auckland with smaller numbers living in other parts of the country.
What are their lives like? Many of the Sri Lankans in New Zealand are office workers, some do medical work while others are in engineering, manufacturing and retail. The Sinhalese speak Sinhalese and English.
What are their beliefs? Many are Buddhists but some are Hindus and Muslims. There are some of them who are Christians.
Prayer Points * Pray that Sri Lankan Christians in New Zealand will lead the others to Salvation.
* Pray that the recent troubles in Sri Lanka will help lead the Sinhalese and other Sri Lankans to Jesus Christ.