Georgian in United States

Photo Source:  reksik004 - Pixabay 
Send Joshua Project a map of this people group.
People Name: Georgian
Country: United States
10/40 Window: No
Population: 900
World Population: 3,235,500
Primary Language: Georgian
Primary Religion: Christianity
Christian Adherents: 79.00 %
Evangelicals: 1.90 %
Scripture: Complete Bible
Online Audio NT: Yes
Jesus Film: Yes
Audio Recordings: Yes
People Cluster: Caucasus
Affinity Bloc: Eurasian Peoples
Progress Level:

Introduction / History

The Georgians trace their ancestry back to Japheth, son of Noah. Lovers of wine, spicy food and song, Georgians are known for their openhanded hospitality. They are fiercely proud of their land and cultural heritage.

A theme of tragedy has followed the Georgians for over 2000 years. Successive waves of invading conquerors, including Greeks under Alexander the Great, Rome, Persia, and Byzantium, all conquered Georgia, hammering the nation. Around the year 330 AD, Christianity came to Georgia, confirmed to the Georgian royal family with signs and wonders. From the eleventh to the thirteenth centuries, Georgia threw off Islamic rule and experienced a Golden Age of peace and prosperity.

Genghis Khan's Mongol hoard brought an end to the Golden Age. During the sixteenth century the Turks advanced into Georgia, followed by the Persians. In the late 1700s Georgians looked to Russia for protection from surrounding Islamic states. Russia annexed Georgia into her empire in 1801. Georgia looked for an opportunity to end Russian influence and declared independence following the Bolshevik Revolution. Though Georgian patriots fought fiercely, they were overcome and were forced to join the USSR in 1921. Georgians never lost their passionate desire to regain their freedom and declared their country's independence in 1991. From then on Georgia has been a free and independent country, but they have faced many challenges. Because Russian communism weakened their culture and economy, the Georgians have to find work in other countries such as the United States.

There are very few Georgians in the US. The first few came as entertainer between the 1890s and 1910s. They entertained crowds with their horsemanship. The first actual wave of Georgians to immigrate to the US came after 1921 when the USSR took over their country. A second wave arrived after WWII as "displaced persons" who might face retribution from the USSR. The third wave was the largest. These Georgians came during the USSR’s final decade of control over Georgia. They settled in many of America’s large cities. Earlier Georgian immigrants took on jobs as cab drivers or manual workers.

What Are Their Lives Like?

Traditionally Georgians have celebrated the birth of a boy and mourned the birth of a girl. Georgian-Americans have ended this practice. They teach children social graces and respect. Georgian-American families encourage their children to get an advanced education and to strive for a high-paying job. Many now hold professional positions. Georgians have made their mark in America through the military, the arts, sports and business.

In American, Georgians sometimes intermarry with Russians, Jews, Ukrainians and Armenians. Though they have much interaction with other ethnic groups, Georgians have their own cultural associations. There is the Georgian Association in the United States and the U.S.-Georgia Foundation.

More Georgians are coming to the U.S. through Mexico. They often do not have the skills of those who have been in America for a generation or two.

Because Georgia has been on the crossroad of a major trade route for hundreds of years, their cuisine is influenced by many other ethnic groups. In the U.S., they tend to blend their cuisine with that of the Russians, especially in restaurants.

What Are Their Beliefs?

The gospel was first preached in Georgia in the 1st century. Christianity became the state religion in in 337. The Georgian church eventually became one of the Eastern Orthodox churches. Zoroastrianism, a monotheistic Persian religion, was their secondary religion for hundreds of years. Their deep-rooted Christian church has caused them to face persecution by conquering Muslim forces.

The Georgians still have a national Orthodox Church with its own patriarch. Some Georgian Christians are committed to the Lord, but most use the church as a cultural social club.

What Are Their Needs?

Pray for a Holy Spirit sent revival to Georgians all over the world.

Pray the work of the JESUS Film among Georgians will lead many to attend church and get discipled in the ways of Christ.

Pray for spiritual hunger and a thirst for righteousness among Georgians everywhere.

Text Source:   Joshua Project