Burun, Lange in Sudan

Burun, Lange
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Map Source:  Joshua Project / Global Mapping International
People Name: Burun, Lange
Country: Sudan
10/40 Window: Yes
Population: 53,000
World Population: 53,000
Primary Language: Burun
Primary Religion: Islam
Christian Adherents: 0.00 %
Evangelicals: 0.00 %
Scripture: Portions
Online Audio NT: No
Jesus Film: Yes
Audio Recordings: Yes
People Cluster: Nilotic
Affinity Bloc: Sub-Saharan Peoples
Progress Level:

Introduction / History

The Burun people live in the Fung region of the Blue Nile Province in eastern Sudan. They are a Nilotic tribe, which means that they are a people living in or around the Upper Nile Valley. The Burun speak a Nilotic language. Some Burun live on the rocky hills of the area, while others live further south in the forests and marshes of Dar Fung. Thus, the Burun are divided into two groups: the northern Burun and the southern Burun (which includes the Meban and Jumjum peoples).
The Burun are closely related to the Dinka and the Nuer who live to their west and south. They also are geographically and linguistically related to the Meban and Jumjum tribes, and some scholars have included the three as a single group.

What Are Their Lives Like?

Most Burun are shepherds and farmers. They raise cattle, goats, and sheep, which are tended by the men and boys. Their crops include millet, sesame, and beans. Both men and women farm the land. The men also engage in some hunting and much fishing, and the women gather wild fruit and grain from the bush beyond their villages.
Burun villages are located on the hillsides, and each hill community is independent from the rest. Every village has its own headman who handles village affairs. The headman inherits his office and is considered "the Father of the Land". His crops are cultivated for him by the villagers who constantly bring him gifts of fish and meat. He keeps in his possession any important symbolic articles, such as the heirloom spears. He receives extreme respect and allegiance from the villagers. However, when his power becomes weak, causing him to lose that respect, the villagers will force him from office. The village "rain-maker" sometimes serves as the headman. He conducts certain rituals in order to bring much needed rain.
Most Burun settlements are large. The people live in round huts with thatched grass roofs. Most men have up to four wives. Each wife has her own hut, but the first wife is "chief" over the other wives. Children live with their mothers in her hut. Until young girls marry, they remain with their mothers, but boys move out when they are able to build their own homes.
Parents often arrange marriages, sometimes when their children are quite young. Before a marriage, the groom must perform a long period of bride-service (work done for the bride's family). The groom also must pay a small bride-price. After the marriage, the couple moves to the girl's village for three years to continue helping the girl's family.
Some Burun children are able to attend school. In certain schools, they teach English at the higher levels, and Arabic at the lower levels. There are few medical facilities in their area.

What Are Their Beliefs?

Influenced by Muslims since the 1500s, the Burun adhere to the five essential duties of Islam: (1) Affirming that "there is no god but Allah and Mohammed is his prophet;" (2) praying five times a day while facing Mecca; (3) giving alms generously; (4) fasting during Ramadan, the ninth month of the Muslim year; and (5) trying to make at least one pilgrimage to Mecca in their lifetime.
The Burun still continue to follow some aspects of their traditional religion. For example, each village usually has its own god. If he becomes angry, the god may send a bad year with little rain or some other misfortune.

What Are Their Needs?

The Burun desperately need to experience Christ's saving power. A majority have never had the opportunity to hear a clear presentation of the gospel. There is a great need for qualified laborers to live and work among these Muslims. It will take concentrated prayer and dedicated workers to see a movement to Christ among the Burun tribe.

Prayer Points

Pray for the end of violence between the tribes of Sudan.
Pray for a spiritual hunger and thirst among the Burun people that will lead them to find the Savior.
Pray for Holy Spirit directed workers to go to them with the gospel.
Pray for a Disciple Making Movement to sweep through the Burun tribe.

Text Source:   Joshua Project