Lawi in Laos

The Lawi have only been reported in Laos
Population
Main Language
Largest Religion
Christian
Evangelical
Progress
Progress Gauge

Introduction / History

The 1995 census of Laos listed 538 ethnic Lawi people living in southern Laos, in the Laman District of Xekong Province. Another ethnographic study from the same year listed 300 Lawi people in 60 families, living in three villages.

The Lawi have lived in the same location for at least four generations. Before that they may have migrated from Vietnam. The area inhabited by the Lawi today is the traditional home of the Alak. In recent decades the Lao and the Talieng have also entered the area and built communities.

The population of the Lawi has remained stable for many years, possibly the result of poor hygiene and epidemics. Fifty years ago there were only two Lawi villages. This number increased to four villages about 15 years ago, before the people decided to combine two villages, bringing the present number of Lawi villages to three.

Lawi homes are renown for their custom of making sculptured and painted ladders that lead into the house.

The Lawi language is rare in Laos in that it is part of the Malayo-Polynesian language family. *

Traditionally, the Lawi are animists. Today, although they still focus on appeasing the spirits, their ceremonies have become far less regular. Up until about 30 years ago they also celebrated an annual ceremony of war, where they called on various spirits to heal them of sickness and to bless their community.

In times of disaster or sickness, the Lawi called in a Djamon (sorcerer) to find the offended spirit. A ceremony was held where the sorcerer counted grains of rice. If the offended spirit was a 'small spirit' the people prayed. If it was a 'large spirit' a buffalo and a pig were sacrificed.

The Lawi have no knowledge of the Gospel or the Person of Christ. The counterparts of the Lawi in Vietnam, the Gia Rai, number more than 80,000 Christians today. The Gia Rai may be best placed to focus on the Lawi in Laos.


Prayer Points

* Scripture Prayers for the Lawi in Laos.

* Pray Gia Rai Christians in Vietnam would find ways to take the Gospel to the similar Lawi in Laos.
* Lift up the needy Lawi before God's throne of grace.
* Pray groups like the Lawi would not be considered too small for consideration by churches and ministries.


References

* Statement edited based on updated information.


Profile Source:   Peoples of Laos, Asia Harvest  Copyrighted ©   Used with permission  

People Name General Lawi
People Name in Country Lawi
World Population 1,200
Total Countries 1
Indigenous Yes
Progress Scale 1
Unreached Yes
Frontier People Group Yes
GSEC 1  (per PeopleGroups.org)
Pioneer Workers Needed 1
Alternate Names Lavi; Lavy
People ID 13015
ROP3 Code 105685
Country Laos
Region Asia, Southeast
Continent Asia
10/40 Window Yes
Persecution Rank 19  (Open Doors top 50 rank, 1 = highest persecution ranking)
Location in Country Xekong province: Lavi Fang Daeng village, south of Xekong town. Two other villages.   Source:  Ethnologue 2019
Country Laos
Region Asia, Southeast
Continent Asia
10/40 Window Yes
Persecution Rank 19  (Open Doors top 50 rank, 1 = highest persecution ranking)
Location in Country Xekong province: Lavi Fang Daeng village, south of Xekong town. Two other villages..   Source:  Ethnologue 2019

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Ethnologue Language Map
Ethnolinguistic map or other map

Primary Language Lavi (1,200 speakers)
Language Code lvi   Ethnologue Listing
Language Written Unknown
Total Languages 1
Primary Language Lavi (1,200 speakers)
Language Code lvi   Ethnologue Listing
Total Languages 1
People Groups Speaking Lavi

Primary Language:  Lavi

Bible Translation Status:  Unspecified

Resource Type Resource Name
None reported  
Primary Religion: Ethnic Religions
Major Religion Percent
Buddhism
0.00 %
Christianity  (Evangelical 0.00 %)
0.00 %
Ethnic Religions
100.00 %
Hinduism
0.00 %
Islam
0.00 %
Non-Religious
0.00 %
Other / Small
0.00 %
Unknown
0.00 %
Christian Segments Percent
Anglican
Unknown
Independent
Unknown
Orthodox
Unknown
Other Christian
Unknown
Protestant
Unknown
Roman Catholic
Unknown
Photo Source Copyrighted © 2020  Asia Harvest  All rights reserved.  Used with permission
Profile Source Peoples of Laos, Asia Harvest  Copyrighted ©   Used with permission  
Data Sources Data is compiled from various sources. Read more