People Group Profiles

“All nations will come and worship before you."

- Revelations 15:4

Lahu, Yellow of United States

People Group Info

Total Population: 2,300

ROP3 Code: 111024
IMB Affinity Group: Southeast Asian Peoples
Affinity Bloc: Tibetan / Himalayan Peoples
People Cluster: West China / Lolo
Language: Lahu Shi - (lhi)
Religion: Christianity - Protestant
Country of Origin: Myanmar [Burma]

Photo courtesy of Joshua Project.
By Jacob Saesee

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Brief Profile

The Yellow Lahu (also known as the Lahu Shi, Kucong, Kui, Kwi) predominantly originated from Myanmar, formerly known as Burma. The use of color as part of the name refers to the traditional color of their dress.

They migrated to the United States as refugees, first settling in California, then in Minnesota, North Carolina, Texas, and Utah. A large percentage of Yellow Lahu reside in Visalia, California, making Visalia home to the largest concentration of Lahu people outside of Asia.

The Lahu people are complex and diverse people. Even their alternate names listed above indicate their diversity. As a result, depending upon their tribal background, their languages are sometimes not mutually intelligible. Diversity is also seen in their religious adherence. The traditional Lahu religion was polytheistic. Buddhism was introduced in the late 17th century and became widespread.

Many Lahu religious practices in China are more a mixture of Buddhism and animistic beliefs, that is, they think everything in the world has its spirit. However, the majority of Lahu in the United States have converted to Protestant Christianity.

Prayer Points

  • Pray that Lahu will not be satisfied with keeping their Christian faith for only themselves, but will intentionally share Christ and plant churches among other people groups.
  • Pray for younger generations of Lahu to make Christ a viable aspect of their everyday life.

Learning Resources

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This book delineates five disciplines Christians should develop in order to effectively reach the nations. More specifically, it will guide Christians to develop an engagement strategy in their locale.

Other Resources

Prayer Guide for Unreached Peoples
A 30 day guide to pray for unreached people groups.

Prayer Guide using the GOSPELS acronym
A prayer guide that utilizes the acronym GOSPELS to pray for workers among diaspora.

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