Population: 4.5 million
Major People Groups: 46% Omani Arab; 15% Southern Baluch; 4% Bengali
Connecting the Arabian Sea, the Gulf of Oman, and the Persian Gulf, the nation of Oman sits in a strategic position. Seas in the north and east and deserts in the west and south, though, have often led to isolation.
With an economy heavily dependent on declining oil reserves, Oman has begun to focus increasingly on tourism. The diverse landscape of untouched coastlines, deserts, and mountains has become a unique destination for travelers.
Spared of much militant Islamist violence, Oman enjoys significantly more personal freedom and political stability than the surrounding area.
In 1970 Qaboos bin Said Al Said overthrew his father, and he ruled until 2020 as the Sultan in this benevolent absolute monarchy. His modernization program and moderate foreign policy have opened Oman’s doors to the outside world and led to overall good relations in the Middle East. Over 40% of the population is expatriate, bringing many foreign influences to bear, but Oman still holds its Arab and Ibadi/Sunni Islamic identity, as it has since the days of Muhammad. After the death of Sultan Qaboos in January 2020, his cousin Haitham bin Tariq Al Said succeeded him as Sultan.
Due to the massive expatriate influence in Oman, people are free to practice varying faiths, and the government has even given land for places of worship. But, it remains illegal to share the Gospel with Muslims. Islam remains the state religion, claiming roughly 89% of the population.
The nearly 3% that claim Christianity are predominantly part of the expatriate community. Very few Omanis are disciples of Jesus, but the number is growing. There remains 77% of the Omani population that have yet to be reached with the Gospel.
Numerous media strategies are being pursued through Christian radio, the internet, and mobile phones, and over 2,000 Omanis have the opportunity to hear about Christ each year while studying abroad.
Description courtesy of Prayercast.
Regions of Oman
We will have a prayer focus on each of the 11 regions of Oman each month in 2023. Click the button below to learn more!
A messenger is calling out,
“In the desert prepare
the way for the Lord.
Make a straight road through it
for our God.
Every valley will be filled in.
Every mountain and hill will be made level.
The rough ground will be smoothed out.
The rocky places will be made flat.
Then the glory of the Lord will appear.
And everyone will see it together.
The Lord has spoken.”