Although the Chinese call all members of this group Hua Miao, they are not the same as the Big Flowery (Hua) Miao or the Small Flowery (Hua) Miao. Among the Hua Miao there are numerous different selfnames, ethnic groups, and dress styles, but all speak one common language. Linguist Michael Johnson has coined the term Hua Miao for this large group. They have been called by many other names in the past. Johnson explains, "I have labeled this linguistic grouping by the rather ambiguous term Hua Miao because there is no one 'Miao + modifier' autonym that is used throughout the group. ... Many of the subgroups within Hua Miao are in fact called Hua Miao 'Flowery Miao' by the Chinese. The geographic extent of the group also makes it difficult to use a geographic based name."
Despite their present ethnic divisions, the Hua Miao were once one group. "Given the comparatively minor extent of linguistic variation within Hua Miao it is feasible that the group formed a single ethnolinguistic group ... perhaps only 600 years ago. The present geographical scattering is due mostly to migrations during the Qing Dynasty which were fueled by persecutions and other social unrest."
What Are Their Lives Like?
Hua Miao probably contains several dozen self-appellations and varieties of dress. Among this collection of groups are the Hmong Dous (Downhill Hmong) in southern Sichuan, who are called Hmong Ghuad Dus (Buffalo Dung Hmong) by other Miao groups in the area in reference to their style of turban.
They are widely scattered and their only chance of hearing the gospel comes if they live near one of the few evangelized Miao communities. They have significant cultural barriers and age-old prejudices combine to prohibit the gospel from spreading from one Miao group to another.
What Are Their Beliefs?
The Hua Miao, being scattered over a large area, have several main religious beliefs, including animism, polytheism and ancestor worship.
There are as few as 1,000 scattered Hua Miao Christians in China—only one out of every 600 people. The Hua Miao are sparsely populated over a wide geographical area; therefore, their only chance of hearing the gospel comes if they happen to live near one of the few evangelized Miao groups - the A-Hmao and Gha-Mu in Guizhou or the Hmong Daw in Yunnan, for example. Significant ethnic and cultural barriers, and age-old prejudices combine to prohibit the gospel from spreading easily from one Miao group to another.
What Are Their Needs?
Without the guidance of Christ, these people are like sheep without a shepherd. They need the good shepherd in their families and communities.
Pray for the authority of Christ to bind hindering spiritual forces to lead them from darkness to light.
Pray for signs and wonders to happen among them and for great breakthroughs with a rapid multiplication of disciples and house churches.
Pray for bold workers who are driven by the love of the Holy Spirit to go to them.
Pray for an unstoppable movement to Christ among them.
Joshua Project data is drawn from many sources and of varying accuracy depending on source and editorial decisions. Populations are scaled to the current year. Other data may have varying ages. We welcome updates.
Joshua Project occasionally adjusts profile text from third party sources. This is done to avoid confusion regarding the current reality of a people group, to fix grammar and spelling and to avoid potentially offensive wording.
A displayed zero can mean true zero, a very small rounded number or sometimes unknown. Blanks mean an unknown value.
Data is not as precise as it appears. Values for %Christian Adherent and %Evangelical (which determine unreached status) are often informed estimates, some more accurate than others. We recommend against using %Christian Adherent and %Evangelical to calculate absolute numbers.
Joshua Project makes every effort to ensure that the subject in an image is in fact from the specific people group. In rare instances a representative photo may be used.
Joshua Project may be able to provide more information than what is published on this site. Please contact us.
On-the-ground reality may vary from what is presented here. Before making travel plans based on data presented here, please confirm with other sources to the extent possible.