Poumong in Laos

Joshua Project has identified the Poumong only in Laos






Largest Religion

Main Language


Introduction / History

Approximately 1,000 members of the Poumong ethnic group live in the Boun-Tai and Khoa districts of southern Phongsali Province in Laos.

Very little is known about the Poumong. They have never appeared in ethno- linguistic lists of Laos before, even though they claim to be a unique people group. Their linguistic affiliation is also yet to be determined, although they may be related to the Pouhoy people in adjacent areas of northern Oudomxai Province. The Pouhoy speak a language from the Mon-Khmer family.

Before 1975, the Poumong lived under the authority of the Royal palace in Luang Prabang. Before the Communists came to power, they had promised to keep the Lao monarchy, but they lied... "King Sisavang Vatthana was forced to abdicate on 1 December 1975, a day before the declaration of the LPDR [Lao People's Democratic Republic], and he and the former RLG [Royal Lao Government] prime minister, Prince Souvanna Phouma, were appointed advisers to the new President Souphanouvong.. The abdication came as a shock to many Lao because the Pathet Lao had promised to retain the monarchy."

The Lao King and princes were always seen as spiritual leaders as well as temporal by most of the people in Laos. Prince Phetsarath, in particular, was believed to possess magical powers. Reports circulated, that were believed by many people, that the Prince "had the power to change himself into a fish and could swim under water for long distances. It was said that bullets could not harm him. He was also reputed to have the ability to change his form, so that at a conference with the French at the time of the Free Lao Movement, he became angry with them, turned himself into a fly, and flew out the window.. People from many parts of the Kingdom often write to him requesting his picture, and some of them place it in their rice fields to keep away malevolent spirits."

The Poumong continue to live their lives under the belief in magic and supernatural forces, that can be manipulated through prayers and offerings. Their animistic rituals include some animal sacrifice and ancestor worship. None of the Poumong have reportedly believed in Jesus Christ, as few have ever heard the Gospel.

Prayer Points

* Pray God Himself would call evangelists and church planters to focus on the Poumong people of Laos.
* Ask God to raise up Poumong who will worship Him in spirit and truth.
* Poumong people will worship Christ around His throne. Pray all Poumong would receive a chance to believe.

Profile Source:   Peoples of Laos, Paul Hattaway  Copyrighted ©   Used with permission  

People Name General Poumong
People Name in Country Poumong
Population in Laos 1,300
World Population 1,300
Countries 1
Progress Scale 1.1
Least-Reached Yes
Unengaged Yes (per Finishing the Task)
Indigenous Yes
Alternate Names
Country Laos
Region Southeast Asia
Continent Asia
10/40 Window Yes
Persecution Rank 28  (Open Doors top 50 rank, 1 = highest persecution ranking)
Location in Country Phongsali province, Boun-Tai and Khoa districts.   Source:  Faces of the Unreached in Laos, 1999

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Enthologue Language Map

Ethnolinguistic map from University of Texas or other map

Languages & Dialects on file:  1  (up to 20 largest shown)
Language Unknown (1,300)
Languages & Dialects (speakers if known) - up to 20 shown
Language Unknown 1,300
For Primary Language: Language Unknown

Bible Translation Status  (Years)
Translation Need Questionable
Resource Format
None reported  
Primary Religion: Ethnic Religions

Major Religion Percent
0.00 %
Christianity  (Evangelical 0.00 %)
0.00 %
Ethnic Religions
100.00 %
0.00 %
0.00 %
0.00 %
Other / Small
0.00 %
0.00 %

Christian Segments Percent
0.0 %
0.0 %
0.0 %
Other Christian
0.0 %
0.0 %
Roman Catholic
0.0 %
Photo Source: Peoples of Laos, Paul Hattaway   Copyrighted ©   Used with permission
Profile Source: Peoples of Laos, Paul Hattaway  Copyrighted ©   Used with permission  
Data Sources: Data is compiled from various sources. Read more

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