Saramaccan in Suriname

Unreached of the Day  9/05/2021

Saramaccan in Suriname

The Saramaccan fought hard for their land rights, and in 2007, the Inter-American Court for Human Rights ruled to support land rights for them. This moment serves as an inspiration to other indigenous people all over the world who fight the same fight. The Saramaccan were sold as African slaves but escaped in the 17th and 18th centuries. They speak Saramaccan, which includes a mix of West African languages, English and Portuguese. Many Saramaccan live along rivers, which are used for drinking water, fishing and transportation. Because of Suriname's civil war in the 80s and 90s, many Saramaccan fled to neighboring French Guyana.

Ministry Obstacles

Much of Saramaccan culture is influenced by ancestors, forest spirits and snake gods. These gods and spirits influence decisions regarding practical things, such as how to deal with theft and where to plant a garden. This idolatry can be a blockade from believing in and serving Jesus Christ.

Outreach Ideas

Because horticulture is important to the Saramaccan, Jesus' parables of farming and sowing seed may speak to their hearts. About four percent of Saramaccan are Christian, so we can pray for them to spread Christ's fame throughout their community.

Scripture Focus

"You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden."  Matthew 5:14

Scripture Prayer

Pray for this people group to become a light to the world reflecting the goodness and grace of Jesus Christ.

Prayer Focus

Pray for the Saramaccan refugees in Guyana to thrive and for the restoration of Suriname after their devastating civil war. Pray that God would soften their hearts to Christ, especially among their elders. Pray for Saramaccan believers to have a movement to Christ started among their people.



People Name Saramaccan
Pronunciationsara-MAH-kun
Country Suriname
10/40 Window No
Population 30,000
World Population 33,200
Language Saramaccan
Primary Religion Ethnic Religions
Bible New Testament
Online Audio NT No
Jesus Film Yes
Audio Recordings Yes
Christ Followers Few, less than 2%
Status Unreached
Progress Level: progress level image