Yonaguni in Japan

Map Source:  People Group location: IMB. Map geography: ESRI / GMI. Map design: Joshua Project.
People Name: Yonaguni
Country: Japan
10/40 Window: Yes
Population: 800
World Population: 800
Primary Language: Yonaguni
Primary Religion: Buddhism
Christian Adherents: 1.00 %
Evangelicals: 0.00 %
Scripture: Unspecified
Online Audio NT: No
Jesus Film: No
Audio Recordings: No
People Cluster: Japanese
Affinity Bloc: East Asian Peoples
Progress Level:

Introduction / History

Yonaguni is an island as well as a language and a people group. It has closer ties to Okinawa than it does to Japan. After WWII, when food and other necessities were hard to come by, there was a thriving black market there. As Japan became more prosperous, and the black market diminished, people left Yonaguni.

Where Are they Located?

These people live either in Japan's westernmost island of Yonaguni or in Taiwan where some of them are going.

What Are Their Lives Like?

With its beautiful beaches, the Yonaguni people are dependent on the tourist industry. Many tourists come there to do scuba diving, especially in the winter. Jobs are scarce enough that many of the Yonaguni people are moving to other places, especially Taiwan. They are trying to bring in Taiwanese fishermen and tourists to strengthen their economy.

Their primary language is Yonaguni, but with such a small population, they also speak either Taiwanese or Japanese.

What Are Their Beliefs?

The Yonaguni people are adherents of their own folk religion, blended in with elements of Buddhism and Shintoism.

What Are Their Needs?

The Yonaguni people need to find better ways to earn a living in their small island homeland.

Prayer Points

Pray for Holy Spirit anointed believers from the Yonaguni people in Japan to change their society from within.
Pray for a movement in which the Holy Spirit leads and empowers Yonaguni disciples to make more disciples.
Pray for a movement of Jesus to heal and strengthen Yonaguni communities.

Text Source:   Keith Carey