Yaqui in United States

Photo Source:  Anonymous 
Send Joshua Project a map of this people group.
People Name: Yaqui
Country: United States
10/40 Window: No
Population: 24,000
World Population: 44,000
Primary Language: Yaqui
Primary Religion: Christianity
Christian Adherents: 60.00 %
Evangelicals: 4.00 %
Scripture: New Testament
Online Audio NT: Yes
Jesus Film: Yes
Audio Recordings: Yes
People Cluster: Aztec
Affinity Bloc: Latin-Caribbean Americans
Progress Level:

Introduction / History

The Yaqui call themselves "Yoeme," the Yaqui word for person. They live in the Sonoran Desert, straddling Mexico and the United States.

They managed to remain independent of both the Aztec and Toltonec tribes of Mexico even at the height of their power. Like many First Nations tribes in North America, the Yaqui traditionally farmed the “three sisters” crops of corn, beans and squash. There were frequent efforts by outsiders to take their land for mining, which led to fighting. They had serious conflicts with the Spaniards during colonial days and Mexico after independence in the 1820s. They were forced to either fight or submit to forced labor even in the early days of the 20th century. Some fled north to the United States in 1884 for safety. Some Americans wanted them sent back to Mexico, but many Yaqui remained in southern Arizona.

In Mexico the Yaqui live on a reservation in the state of Sonora. In the United States they often live in the city of Tucson, Arizona. Others live in Tempe and Scottsdale near Phoenix.

What Are Their Lives Like?

On the Mexican side of the border, the Yaqui still have conflicts with the government. Yaqui leaders have been killed in the 21st century. There are conflicts regarding water since the Yaqui earn their living through agriculture.

In the United States they often work in the cities of Arizona. Some take low paying jobs while others, usually those with a good education, have high paying jobs.

What Are Their Beliefs?

In Mexico the Yaqui have had good relations with the Jesuits, so most are Roman Catholic. Yet they blend in their ancient religious practices with Roman Catholicism. For example, a traditional deer dance is part of their Easter celebration.

Those who fled to the US are more likely to be Protestant than those in Mexico. Yaqui people on both sides of the border have regular contact with one another.

What Are Their Needs?

Those in Mexico need more water rights. It’s possible they need access to modern farming equipment. In the US, the Yaqui people need access to advanced education.

Prayer Points

Pray for Yaqui people to have access to higher education and technical training.

Pray for the Lord to provide for the Yaqui tribe according to his abundant riches and mercy.

Pray for their spirituality to be centered around Jesus Christ and none other.

Pray for Yaqui disciples from the United States to make disciples of those in Mexico.

Text Source:   Joshua Project