Urdu in Turkey

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People Name: Urdu
Country: Turkey
10/40 Window: Yes
Population: 25,000
World Population: 2,144,000
Primary Language: Urdu
Primary Religion: Islam
Christian Adherents: 0.00 %
Evangelicals: 0.00 %
Scripture: Complete Bible
Online Audio NT: No
Jesus Film: Yes
Audio Recordings: Yes
People Cluster: South Asia - other
Affinity Bloc: South Asian Peoples
Progress Level:

Introduction / History

Aryan tribes entered India about 1500 BC mixing with mongoloids, Greeks and Huns. Through the generations this caused the Indian features of the people to gradually become more Caucasian and their languages to become more diverse. In later centuries Muslim influence promoted the linguistic change out of which the Urdu language eventually developed. Hindi and Urdu are similar languages, but they are divided by religious affiliation; Hindi is spoken by the Hindu peoples while Urdu is spoken by Muslims. Urdu is heavily laden with Persian and Arabic words and is written in the Persian script. Today when one thinks of South Asian Muslim languages, Urdu is the first one that comes to mind. Urdu is seldom a heart language, but it is the trade language of Pakistan.
Urdu speakers come from all walks of life, but they usually originate in either Pakistan or northern India. The Urdu possess a sense of group identity based on cultural and historical factors: the Islamic religion, a Persian cultural tradition, the Urdu language, and the tradition of Muslim supremacy in northern India.
In recent years many Urdu-speaking Muslims have emigrated to Bahrain, Qatar and Saudi Arabia, searching for economic opportunities. Skilled laborers and highly educated professionals among them have also emigrated to Western Europe, North America, and British Commonwealth countries all over the world. A small number live in Turkey.

What Are Their Lives Like?

The Urdu community in Turkey are often shop owners or professionals.

What Are Their Beliefs?

Although the Urdu are all Muslims, this is no longer a unifying factor. There are intense differences among the various Muslim sects (the Hanafites, Shafiites, and Ithna-Asharis).
Since entire communities tended to migrate together, different Islamic sects are found in different countries. For example, in Turkey and South Africa, the Urdu speakers are almost completely Sunni Muslims, whereas in Canada and in Pakistan, they are usually part of a different school of Islam.

What Are Their Needs?

These are Sunni Muslims living in another Sunni Muslim country with very few who can tell them about the living Savior. They need the JESUS Film and Urdu language broadcasts readily available to them.

Prayer Points

Pray for a massive movement to Christ among Urdu speakers this decade leading to spiritual and physical blessings in Christ.
Pray for the Lord to thrust out workers to the Urdu speakers in Turkey.
Pray for persons of peace among the Urdu people who will accept Christ's ambassadors.
Pray for resources like the JESUS Film and Urdu language broadcasts to become widely available.

Text Source:   Joshua Project