Can you hear the cries of the Iban Tribe? Are you willing to partner with us to transform this people group together?


Picture this:
They can only enjoy taking the communion once every two years.
They can only meet with their pastor once every two years.
One pastor is ministering to 100 churches.
14% of the population are Christians, but only a few is willing to serve God full-time.


It may be hard for us to imagine such dire circumstances, but this is the sad reality that the Iban Tribe people in Eastern Malaysia are currently living in!

About Iban Tribe

Population: 750,000 to 1 million (in Borneo)
Race: Dayak
Distribution: Malaysia and Indonesia
History: Their ancestors were cannibals, so the tribe is also called “Head Hunter Tribe.”
Religion: They believe in animism and advocate witchcraft. Witches usually stay in longhouses to provide medical treatment. They also encourage people from their tribe to worship elves or spirits in festivals. Since the 60s, the Methodist Church in Sarawak and Borneo Evangelical Church or SIB (Malay: Sidang Injil Borneo)Evangelical Church in Borneo have established many churches in this tribe. It is estimated that the number of Christians exceeds 14% of the population.


Even though more than 14% of population are Christians, the churches still lack vitality and its believers are not dedicated to the mission of Christ.

Challenges facing the Community

  • The tradition of ancestor and idol worship is deeplyrooted in the culture of the Iban people. Thus, most of the believers are only nominal Christians and have poor spiritual lives.
  • Due to poverty, most of the believers need to go elsewhere to work and struggle to make a living. It is hard for them to commit to full-time ministry or become full-time pastors. The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few.
  • Iban people live alongside rivers, making it difficult to get there. The difficulty to get to Iblan people accentuates the struggle to make home visits and follow-up work.

Challenges facing Individuals

  • Discipleship is not systematic and the pastors usually need to take care of many longhouses. Hence, believers’ spiritual lives are rooted in the shallow soil and can be easily withered.
  • Most of the believers are illiterate elderly and children. Therefore, missionaries and pastors can no longer rely on the standard training materials which are designed for literate adults.

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