Michi in China

Joshua Project has identified the Michi only in China





Largest Religion

Main Language



Although they have been counted as members of the Yi nationality by the Chinese authorities, the five "Yi" groups in the Panzhihua area "are all very different from each other ... and have a strong sense of ethnic identity." The Michi are also known as the Red Yi or Michia. The Michi are one of more than 100 branches of the Yi nationality living within the borders of Yunnan Province. The official Chinese pinyin spelling of their name is Miqi. The Michi have also been listed in literature as the Sinicized Yi due to their high level of assimilation into the Chinese culture.


The Michi claim to have migrated to their present location from Guizhou. Chinese scholar T'ien Ju-K'ang explains the historical differences between the different groups in the area: "The divisional coverage and the farm land localities largely overlap. The number of high status Black Yi [Eastern Nasu] was high and proportional to the concentration of Gani [Naluo] as tenant serfs. The Han landlords parasitized on the Sinicized Micha [Michi]. The Miao, Lisu, and Gani [Naluo] who became Christians in groups had a common distinguishing feature: they were sparsely settled in the high mountains to avoid being assimilated."


One of the few unique Michi customs remaining includes their ritual of constructing ancestral altars with pine branches. They also practice "double cross cousin marriage."


Unlike most Yi groups in China, who are polytheists, the Michi have little or no trace of spirit appeasement left in their religious practices. Elderly Michi worship their ancestors, while a growing number of youth are atheists.


Australian missionary A. G. Nicholls first visited Sapushan in 1906. By 1952 there were 3,000 Nosu and 1,585 Naluo Christians, as well as small numbers of Michi and other believers in the area. In the last ten years the Eastern Lipo have emerged as the strongest church in northern Yunnan and have thoroughly evangelized most Michi. The Michi believers do not have their own churches but are in mixed congregations with Chinese, Eastern Lipo, and Naluo believers. Despite their exposure to the gospel, relatively few Michi have followed Christ. Nominalism and the pressure of Communism have caused many Michi believers to fall away.

Profile Source:   Operation China, Paul Hattaway  Copyrighted ©   Used with permission  

Video Links:
The Path to Truth and Life
People Name General Michi (Mee-chee)
People Name in Country Michi
Population in China 38,000
World Population 38,000
Countries 1
Progress Scale 3.1
Least-Reached No
Indigenous Yes
Alternate Names Hong Yi, Mi Qie Po, Michia, Michipuo, Mijia, Min Chi, Min Qi, Mingjia, Minqi, Miqi, Miqipuo, Mizu, Red Yi, Sinicized Yi
Affinity Bloc Tibetan-Himalayan Peoples
People Cluster Tibeto-Burman, other
People Name General Michi (Mee-chee)
Ethnic Code MSY50i
People ID 18594
Country China
Region Northeast Asia
Continent Asia
10/40 Window Yes
Persecution Rank 29  (Open Doors top 50 rank, 1 = highest persecution ranking)
Location in Country Approximately 29,700 Michi live in communities on both sides of the Sichuan-Yunnan border. The majority are located in northern Yunnan Province, in addition to a small number living near the town of Panzhihua in southern Sichuan. A 1954 government study listed 2,854 Michi in Wuding. A 1957 report listed 7,785 Michi living in Chuxiong Prefecture, which includes Wuding County. The Michi are also found in Fumin, Lufeng, Luquan, Yimen, and Anning counties..   Source:  Operation China, 2000

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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)
Chinese, Mandarin (38,000)
Languages & Dialects (speakers if known) - up to 20 shown
Chinese, Mandarin 38,000
For Primary Language: Chinese, Mandarin

Bible Translation Status  (Years)
Bible Portions Yes   (1864-1986)
New Testament Yes   (1857-1981)
Complete Bible Yes   (1874-1983)
Audio Bible Online
Resource Format
Audio Bible teaching (GRN) Audio Recordings
Bible Gateway Scripture Text / Printed Matter
Bible Visuals General
Bible-in-Your-Language Text / Printed Matter
Bible: Chinese Union Version, Shangti Edition, Simplified Text / Printed Matter
Bible: Chinese Union Version, Shangti Edition, Simplified Text / Printed Matter
Bible: Chinese Union Version, Shen Edition, Simplified Text / Printed Matter
Bible: Chinese Union Version, Shen Edition, Simplified Text / Printed Matter
Bible: Revised Chinese Union Version, Traditional Text / Printed Matter
Bible: 新譯本(繁體字版) Text / Printed Matter
Bibles, Bible League Text / Printed Matter
Cartoon Gospel tract Text / Printed Matter
Chinese Blog about Unreached Peoples General
Christ for the Nations Audio Recordings
EasyBibles Text / Printed Matter
EasyBibles Text / Printed Matter
EasyBibles Text / Printed Matter
Fathers Love Letter Film / Video
Four Spiritual Laws General
General Ministry Resources Film / Video
Primary Religion: Ethnic Religions

Major Religion Percent
0.00 %
Christianity  (Evangelical 2.69 %)
4.00 %
Ethnic Religions
92.00 %
0.00 %
0.00 %
4.00 %
Other / Small
0.00 %
0.00 %

Christian Segments Percent
0.0 %
100.0 %
0.0 %
Other Christian
0.0 %
0.0 %
Roman Catholic
0.0 %
Photo Source: Operation China, Paul Hattaway   Copyrighted ©   Used with permission
Video Source: Create International
Profile Source: Operation China, Paul Hattaway  Copyrighted ©   Used with permission  
Data Sources: Data is compiled from various sources. Read more

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