Kulina, Madija in Peru

The Kulina, Madija are indigenous to Brazil and Peru and live along the Purus tributary. Most Kulina live in Brazil but 500 live in Peru in the upper Purus region. They speak an Arawak language. The origin of the name Kulina is unknown, but the people refer to themselves as Madija, meaning “people.”

They are animists who believe in animal spirits called Tokorime. In the sky lives a hero called Kira, and Kira created the Kulina and then retreated to the sky. They have shamans who are the spiritual mediators and performers of rituals.

Engagement // What’s Happening Now

Missionaries in the past have attempted to equate God with Kira and Tokorime with satanic forces. Even with the previous attempts to contextualize the gospel, few have accepted Jesus and most hold to their religious traditions. As the local church and LAC missionaries work to reach the Kulina, pray the Holy Spirit imparts wisdom to share the gospel.

Readers, Writers, and Speakers

The Wycliffe website states, “When people finally get the Bible in their own language, lives often change in amazing ways. People are transformed as they are led to Jesus Christ and a relationship with God.”

There is no translation of the Bible in their language. Pray for workers who will work among the Kulina and write a translation in their language.

Partnership // Move Beyond
  • Pray teams will be sent to plant churches in Kulina villages.
  • Pray the Holy Spirt guides the local church in Peru as they strategize a plan to reach the unreached tribes.
  • Pray that the gospel may be revealed through power and miracles as missionaries share the gospel.

“And when I came to you, brethren, I did not come with superiority of speech or of wisdom, proclaiming to you the testimony of God. For I determined to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ, and Him crucified. I was with you in weakness and in fear and in much trembling, and my message and my preaching were not in persuasive words of wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power, so that your faith would not rest on the wisdom of men, but on the power of God” (1 Corinthians 2:1-5, NASB).

To get involved, see the LAC Pipeline. Interested in more opportunities? See the Wide Open Missions website.

Joshua HuverKulina, Madija in Peru