At first glance, a visit to the cattle market in Chad looks like a bad idea. In a huge dustbowl on the outskirts of a large town, thousands of cattle and hundreds of traders weekly converge. Chadian Arabs mingle with Mbororo and other peoples, bartering and dealing in the currency of nomads: animals. The market is a cacophony of chatter and seemingly sly deals, but it’s also a surprisingly festive affair, with plenty of laughter, storytelling, and shared cups of tea. A number of the cattlemen even posed for a photo, like this man – cool and contemplative in the 100-degree heat.
photo by mike delorenzo
the bigger picture
Chad is a land of tremendous potential for the gospel. In many ways, it is unique in this regard. At 61% Muslim and neighbor to some of the world’s most protective Islamic states, you wouldn’t expect to get a “missionary visa” to live in Chad; but you can. While the culture and the government tend to favor Muslims, the state is openly declared to be secular, and religious freedom is supported. Chad is also home to a somewhat gentler, more open variety of Islam that regards any serious “man of religion” as a man (or woman) to be honored. This includes Christians.
AIM is making a renewed effort to engage Chad in the years ahead. We have opportunities with 2-3 year outreach teams in rural and urban areas. Learn more about serving with us. And if you’d like to explore current options for Chad, contact us via the “Start here” form at the bottom of the page.