From the homepage of website:
The Nomadic Peoples Network is a forum where those working to advance the Kingdom of God amongst the nomadic and semi-nomadic ethnic groups can share what they have learned and encourage one another in this specialized cross cultural ministry.
Why is there a need for a Nomadic Peoples Network?
Whilst great progress is being made in the spread of the Christian gospel throughout the settled world, nomadic and semi-nomadic peoples are being left out and will probably be the last and least likely to hear it. This is through no fault of their own but mainly because of the reluctance of Kingdom workers to live in such inevitably isolated and usually uncongenial areas where they are found: typically semi-arid deserts or high altitude pastures.
If nomads are lost it is not by their choice, but by chance that they happen to live in climates and environments that are unattractive to contemporary workers from settled societies. The responsibility of carrying the Gospel to these unreached and unknown ones falls on the shoulders of those of us who have received the divine gift of grace, and who are charged with the responsibility of looking for the lost sheep about whom Jesus said “Them also I must bring into my fold!”
The Nomadic Peoples Network works with field practitioners, agencies and agency leaders, and nomadic people groups to see The Great Commission of Jesus Christ fulfilled amongst unreached nomadic groups world-wide.
Hebrews 13:14 (NLT) “For this world is not our permanent home; we are looking forward to a home yet to come”.
Today’s technology has spawned cyber-nomads. Like ancient nomads, they are mobile, social, tribal, and seek oases to supply what they cannot carry. Unlike the ancients, the moderns are in step with the future, not the past.
Are you an urban nomad? Do you recognize yourself or others through these questions?
Do you work or study in a non-traditional Wi-Fi setting?
- Communal office
- Distance / on-line education programs
- Home office
- Shared desk
How do you manage your social relations?
- Seek places where other people are present
- Maintain psychological distance from those present
- Connect with colleagues, friends or family through brief messages
- Check often for responses
- Use various social media and technology to communicate (text, instant message, email, voice, photo, video)
As you work or study, do you value?
- Ad hoc decisions
- Instant communication
- Light loads
- Staying connected
- Virtual experiences
“As in the desert, so in the city: nomadism promises the heaven of new freedom, but it also threatens the hell of constant surveillance by the tribe.”
The Economist Magazine’s “special report on mobility” (April 12, 2008) needs updating. It claims that “the underlying technologies of genuine and everyday nomadism did not exist even as recently as a decade ago”. Five or six years on, we have even smarter phones, more multi-purpose tablets and advancing Cloud technology. Where will the future take us? And how will we move through life?
(above) The Himba are an ancient tribe of semi-nomadic herders, living since the 16th century in scattered settlements throughout the region of the Kunene River in northwest Namibia and southwest Angola.
Over a three year period, photographer Jimmy Nelson visited 35 remote tribes on five continents. He published his collected photos in the book “Before They Pass Away” (www.teneues.com) Gaining the acceptance of people was the key to Jimmy’s work. His book stands as both a piece of art and an historical document.
“The world is changing and we’re not going to stop it, but I hope in my own way, to encourage them not to abandon everything that makes them so individual.”
While all the tribes he encountered were completely different in terms of appearance, the similarities were obvious. “From a social perspective they were the same,” Jimmy says. “The further you get away from civilization, the more people work as a family unit, the greater respect they have for the older generations and for each other. The further away you get, the kinder people are.”
“’NOMAD’ was a good word for Nicolae Gheorghe. He was always on the move, with his worldly goods strapped to his back: a laptop, bundles of e-mails, a ring-binder, three shirts.”
Thus, begins the obituary of an influential advocate for the Roma, a traveling people. He was tireless:
- A well-read, multilingual cosmopolitan
- An academic, writing on the plight of the Roma for the Western Press.
- An award-winning point-man for all things Roma to international organizations.
- A gypsy by blood and upbringing.
- An anthropologist of his own people.
- A secretary to an illiterate “King of the Gypsies”
- An activist when Roma were moved into ghettos
- An entrepreneur, setting up the first Roma NGO
He dreamed dreams for the Roma people:
- That talented young Roma would get involved in business and politics.
- That the wider world would understand the Roma as “transnational, representing a society whose ideals were broader, freer and more enterprising than those in nation states.”
What do hunter-gatherer groups foraging on foot for food have in common with sharks and honeybees? What do they have in common with you and the way you move about?
According to anthropological studies, we follow a similar mathematical pattern of movement. It is “called the Levy walk…a series of short movements in one area combined with a few longer treks to more distant areas.”
(Now you know what to do with that GPS wrist-watch that was under the tree.)