“Bira Girls” 1999,
by Richard Bartz
The Selayar people are indigenous to
majority of Selayar are Muslim. Selayar cultural customs are
strongly tied to their religion and are very influential in
their daily lives, producing religious syncretism. Ten to twenty
years ago there was a group of Christian believers among the
Selayar. As time went on, their numbers dropped because of
pressure from the government and a mixing with Hindu beliefs.
This has created a syncretistic form of Christianity.
Farming is the primary economic mainstay
in the region and frequently is referred to as Bumi Tana Doang
(place on earth that beseeches the Omnipotent). Plantations'
produce includes kapok, guava, cloves, coconut, candlenut,
nutmeg, cocoa and vanilla. Kopra (dried coconut meat) and cloves
were the two crops relied on in years past.
The prices on these has fallen, but still a large number
of farmers continue their coconut plantations. Several years
ago, many farmers made the move to grow vanilla. The crops that
were considered to be intercrops have begun to increase in value
and have become the primary cash crops.
prices are very high in Selayer so many people have the
buses that come over from South Sulawesi daily bring items back
for them. The cost
they give the bus driver is still cheaper than the cost to buy
They are located the island
of Selayer and several other small islands off the coast of
5 % adherent and 0.24 % evangelical
No Bible, no Jesus film and no
Church planting has been
initiated locally in the last two years.
Pray that the church planter’s efforts
will be successful and that more will join them.
Pray that the hearts of the Selayar
people will be prepared to receive the Good News.
Pray that signs and wonders will follow
them that believe.
Pray that an indigenous church will be
planted among the Selayar people group.
1999 by Richard Bartz, used with