MMA fighter and Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) veteran Justin "The Viking" Wren recently went to the Eastern Congo on an aid mission. During his trip Wren visited the Mbuti Pygmy
. The Mbuti of the Democratic Republic of Congo live in the Congo's Ituri forest
, a dense tropical rainforest. Being located in such a remote area, many of the villagers, especially the children, have never encountered a white person before.
Wren was visiting the area to deliver aid resources and "bring the love of Jesus" to the Mbui Pygmy people. According to Wren's website
, only 1% of the Mbuti Pygmies have heard of Jesus. He also says Mbuti Pygmies are persecuted, tortured and denied citizen status in the Democratic Republic of Congo. When Wren ventured into the deep jungle to visit one of the villages some of the villagers ran and hid behind trees, having never seen a white person before.
According to the YouTube video, the children in the area were fascinated with Wren's hairy arms, thick beard and long hair. When Wren allowed the children to feel his arms, they flocked to him and began rubbing his arms, seemingly enthralled by the feel of his arm hair. He then allowed them to feel his beard, getting the same reaction. Wren decided to record the children's reaction and when the children could see themselves in the camera, they began to cheer loudly and wave. When talking about the experience, Wren says
"We are working to help these people in need, but that doesn't mean you can't have fun while doing it!"
The heartwarming interaction has gone viral, with the YouTube video receiving more than 347,000 views in less than 24 hours, as well as 2862 likes on Reddit
in one day.