Qiang, Longxi in China

Qiang, Longxi
Photo Source:  Copyrighted © 2024
Operation China, Asia Harvest  All rights reserved.  Used with permission
Map Source:  Bethany World Prayer Center
People Name: Qiang, Longxi
Country: China
10/40 Window: Yes
Population: 5,700
World Population: 5,700
Primary Language: Qiang, Southern
Primary Religion: Ethnic Religions
Christian Adherents: 0.00 %
Evangelicals: 0.00 %
Scripture: Portions
Online Audio NT: No
Jesus Film: Yes
Audio Recordings: Yes
People Cluster: Tibeto-Burman, other
Affinity Bloc: Tibetan-Himalayan Peoples
Progress Level:

Introduction / History

The Qiang honor white stones, a tradition reportedly started after a conflict many centuries ago. The hostile Geji tribe ambushed the Qiang, who being caught unprepared, picked up sticks and white stones and fought with them. Despite their marked disadvantage, they defeated their enemies and won the right to live in the fertile valley that remains their home today.

Longxi Qiang is a distinct language spoken by members of the official Qiang nationality in China.

Chinese scholars describe the various Qiang languages, including Longxi, as mere "dialects" of Qiang, but they are clearly distinct languages. The Southern Qiang languages have as many as six tones, while Northern Qiang is non tonal.

What Are Their Lives Like?

Qiang families spend much of their time around the fireplace and cauldron, which is located in the middle of their homes. The cauldron "is an iron or steel tripod over which hangs a hook known commonly as a rat's tail, which they raise or lower at will to regulate the heat of the fire.

What Are Their Beliefs?

During their annual sacrifice, the Qiang carry a sacred roll of white paper which represents the Word of God - even though it has nothing written on it. Torrance explains how "each year a fresh piece of white paper is rolled around the scroll to indicate the purity of the Word or Heaven-sent sin bearer which they termed variously Je-Dzu, Nee-Dzu or Rin-Dzu, meaning 'Saviour'. On hearing this my father then read the first chapter of St. John's Gospel which tells of the Word of God made flesh in Jesus Christ. He told the Qiang that they had been tucked away in such a remote part of the world that they had never heard that the Word of God had come in Jesus Christ. As he announced the Good News the priest and all his household believed and were duly baptized."

After all of the Qiang church leaders had been martyred in 1935, missionary Thomas Torrance returned to Scotland. A Qiang Christian, Huang Taiqing, wrote to him: "Because of the communist persecution, this book was hidden in a cave during the year of the Chinese Republic. Thus, the book was saved from destruction. In memory of the Gospel Chapel of Tongmenwai, Lifan County." The New Testament was sent to Torrance as a pledge that the church among the Qiang would rise again. Today there are Qiang believers living in Kegu, Kampo, Lixian, Songpan, and Maoxian counties, but it is not known if there are any Christians among the Longxi Qiang dialect group.

What Are Their Needs?

They need to have a fresh revelation of God, who has revealed himself to them through missionary work in the past.

Prayer Points

Pray that believers in surrounding areas would reach out to the Longxi Qiang people.
Pray that their religious practice of honoring the "scroll of white paper" would somehow show them that God has revealed himself to people through his written word.
Pray that God would transform their hearts so that they will understand and accept the gospel.
Pray that God would remove obstacles to them coming to faith in Christ.

Text Source:   Joshua Project