Irumu in Papua New Guinea

The Irumu have only been reported in Papua New Guinea
Main Language
Largest Religion
Progress Gauge

Introduction / History

The Irumu people were introduced to Christianity by indigenous evangelists from the Evangelical Lutheran Church of PNG (ELCPNG). Rudimentary but effective schools were established to teach education basics which introduced literacy effectively to the population. The Bible, liturgy and hymns were all introduced in a language not their own from the coast, but were embraced comprehensively.

Where Are they Located?

The Irumu people are located at an elevation of 1000 metres in the foothills of the Sarawaged mountain range of the Morobe Province. The terrain is entirely mountainous.

What Are Their Lives Like?

The Irumu people live a subsistence life with vegetable gardens. The area is fertile and has good rainfall so food is plentiful. People hunt for wild pig and some pigs and chickens are cared for, but on the whole meat is not a large part of their diet. Houses are mostly of bush material but iron roofs for water collection are becoming more commonplace. Families have small solar systems for low-level lighting, and spotty mobile phone reception is available. There is a primary school in one of the villages and a number of children go on to secondary education away from their village. Infant mortality has improved over the years but the terrain, smokey houses and diet take their toll. Cash crops of coffee, peanuts and tobacco provide cash for schooling costs, and everyday rudimentary necessities.

What Are Their Beliefs?

The Irumu people are foundationally animist but Christianity has become 'cultural' and normative. A good proportion of the population attends church but seem to not understand the concept of a personal relationship with God through Jesus Christ. 'Cargo Cult' thinking where manipulation of spiritual forces, or even God in order to find the good life is a background noise in the life of many people. This has the effect of people feeling that God is holding out on them but seems to bless Westerners, for instance, because they have discovered the secret to blessing.

Prayer Points

Pray for a renewed uptake in reading of or listening to the transated Irumu Scriptures. Pray for the encouragement of those who love Jesus Christ and seek to follow him. Pray for Jesus Christ loving pastors. Pray for many Irumu people to give their true alleigance to Jesus Christ.

Scripture Prayers for the Irumu in Papua New Guinea.

Profile Source:   Ross Webb  

People Name General Irumu
People Name in Country Irumu
Alternate Names Upper Irumu
Population this Country 2,200
Population all Countries 2,200
Total Countries 1
Indigenous Yes
Progress Scale 5
Unreached No
Frontier People Group No
GSEC 5  (per
Pioneer Workers Needed
People ID 12257
ROP3 Code 104071
ROP25 Code 303239
ROP25 Name Irumu
Country Papua New Guinea
Region Australia and Pacific
Continent Australia
10/40 Window No
Persecution Rank Not ranked
Location in Country Morobe province: Kaiapit district, Wantoat subdistrict.   Source:  Ethnologue 2016
Country Papua New Guinea
Region Australia and Pacific
Continent Australia
10/40 Window No
Persecution Rank Not ranked
Location in Country Morobe province: Kaiapit district, Wantoat subdistrict..   Source:  Ethnologue 2016

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Primary Religion: Christianity
Major Religion Percent
0.00 %
Christianity  (Evangelical 18.00 %)
85.00 %
Ethnic Religions
15.00 %
0.00 %
0.00 %
0.00 %
Other / Small
0.00 %
0.00 %
Primary Language Tuma-Irumu (2,200 speakers)
Language Code iou   Ethnologue Listing
Language Written Yes   ScriptSource Listing
Total Languages 1
Primary Language Tuma-Irumu (2,200 speakers)
Language Code iou   Ethnologue Listing
Total Languages 1
People Groups Speaking Tuma-Irumu

Primary Language:  Tuma-Irumu

Bible Translation Status  (Years)
Bible-Portions Yes  (1988-1999)
Bible-New Testament Yes  (1997-2015)
Bible-Complete No
FCBH NT ( Online
YouVersion NT ( Online
Possible Print Bibles
World Bibles
Forum Bible Agencies
National Bible Societies
World Bible Finder
Virtual Storehouse
Resource Type Resource Name Source
Film / Video LUMO film of Gospels Bible Media Group/LUMO
General Faith Comes By Hearing - Bible in text or audio or video Faith Comes by Hearing
General Gospel resources links Scripture Earth
General YouVersion Bible versions in text and/or audio YouVersion Bibles
Mobile App Android Bible app: Tuma-Irumu YouVersion Bibles
Mobile App Bible app direct APK download SIL
Mobile App iOS Bible app: Tuma-Irumu YouVersion Bibles
Text / Printed Matter Download scripture in this language
Text / Printed Matter Scripture text - download PNG Bible Translation Association
Profile Source Ross Webb 
Data Sources Data is compiled from various sources. Learn more.