People Group Highlights

“All nations will come and worship before you."

- Revelations 15:4

Somali of North America

People Group Info

Total Population: 320,319

ROP3 Code: 109392
IMB Affinity Group: North African and Middle Eastern Peoples
Affinity Bloc: Horn of Africa
People Cluster: Somali
Language: Somali - (som)
Religion: Islam
Country of Origin: Somalia

Photo courtesy of Joshua Project. By Anonymous

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Majority Located Where

  Toronto (Mississauga, Brampton), ON - 80,000

  Minneapolis-St. Paul-Bloomington, MN - 70,000

  Columbus, OH - 40,000

  Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, WA - 25,000

  Edmonton, AB - 20,000

Click here to recommend other locations where this People Group resides.

Learn More

Brief Profile

Somalia, the country known for pirates and camels, also boasts a population that is over 99% Muslim, placing it among the most Muslim nations in the world. Unique, however, is that fact that Somalia has had over 40% of its population displaced in recent years due to civil war. Somalis fled to refugee camps in Kenya, Ethiopia, and Yemen, and have made their way to American states such as Minnesota, California, Georgia, Maine, and Washington. They are here in numbers so significant that they demand our notice and attention.

Over 3,000 Somalis now call Lewiston, ME, home, and over 10,000 have made their way to San Diego, CA. Even larger concentrations of Somali immigrants can be found in Seattle, WA, and Columbus, OH. However, the largest populations of Somalis in North America are in Toronto and Minneapolis/St. Paul, both of which contain an estimated 60-80,000 Somalis.

They come with a history of trauma, often struggling with depression from the war and the loss of so much. Many come with a radical faith—from environments in which Sharia law is strictly enforced. They come with large families, or what remains of them, but little in terms of material or educational means. As they struggle to make sense of a new land, many Somali immigrants also face prejudice and cultural misunderstanding. Their strict adherence to Islam isolates them in their new country.

A Somali proverb says, “Only water in your hands can satisfy your thirst.” But Jesus once told a foreign woman at a well that “Whoever drinks from the water that I will give him will never get thirsty again–ever! In fact, the water I give him will become a well of water springing up within him for eternal life.” (John 4:14)

What if God uprooted a nation and inserted them into ours so that they could find Water that would never leave them thirsty again? How satisfying would that Water be for their thirst? Who will put it in their hands?

Used with permission from Global Gates.

Prayer Points

  • Pray for openness of Somalis to hearing the Gospel.
  • Pray for the Holy Spirit to begin working on the hearts of Somalis to recognize that intimacy with God comes only through a relationship with Christ.
  • Pray for gospel laborers to enter into the harvest field of Somalis who are living among them.

Learning Resources

Learn more about "Any-3"
Any–3 provides biblical principles and practical steps that have equipped hundreds of Christians to witness confidently and effectively. Over the past decade, thousands of Muslims have been engaged with the gospel.

Learn more about "Learning Paths"
Online Courses for embracing, encountering and engaging diaspora people. Work at your own pace. Begin anytime and complete the course according to your schedule. Interactive, Hands-On Application.

Learn more about "Reaching the Nations"
This book delineates five disciplines Christians should develop in order to effectively reach the nations. More specifically, it will guide Christians to develop an engagement strategy in their locale.

Loving Muslims Small Group Study
This Loving Muslims booklet is a two-week group study that takes a deeper look at Christ’s command to "love our neighbor."

World Religions - Beliefs Overview
An overview of major world religions and cults - their beliefs and practices.

Overview of Islam
Overview of Islam and its sub-groupings. Developed by the North American Mission Board, SBC. Includes generalized witnessing tips.

Other Resources

Know God in 98 Languages
A CRU resource with 9 different witnessing models (e.g. 4 Spiritual Laws, etc.) in 98 languages.

Prayer Guide for Unreached Peoples
A 30 day guide to pray for unreached people groups.

Prayer Guide using the GOSPELS acronym
A prayer guide that utilizes the acronym GOSPELS to pray for workers among diaspora.

Displaying 1-19 of 19 results.
Country City Metro Area Name State / Prov. Baseline Population
CanadaEtobicokeToronto (Mississauga, Brampton)ON80,000
United StatesMinneapolisMinneapolis-St. Paul-BloomingtonMN70,000
United StatesColumbusColumbusOH40,000
United StatesSeattleSeattle-Tacoma-BellevueWA25,000
United StatesEdmontonEdmontonAB20,000
United StatesSan DiegoSan Diego-Carlsbad-San MarcosCA15,000
United StatesNashvilleNashville-Davidson--Murfreesboro--FranklinTN5,000
United StatesFalls ChurchWashington-Arlington-AlexandriaVA5,000
United StatesFort McMurrayWood BuffaloAB3,000
United StatesClarkstonAtlanta-Sandy Springs-RoswellGA3,000
United StatesBeavertonPortland-Vancouver-HillsboroOR2,100
United StatesLouisvilleLouisville/Jefferson CountyKY1,290
United StatesAmarilloAmarillo-DumasTX1,000
United StatesCharlotteCharlotte-Concord-GastoniaNC950
United StatesRaleighRaleigh-Durham-Chapel HillNC775
United StatesKCMOKansas CityMO589
United StatesDumasAmarillo-DumasTX500
United StatesGarlandDallas-Fort Worth-ArlingtonTX320

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"After this I looked, and there before me was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people and language, standing before the throne and before the Lamb."
(Revelation 7:9, NIV)
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