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Malay, East Malaysia in Malaysia

Malay, East Malaysia

Send us a photo of this people.  [1]

Malay, East Malaysia in Malaysia map
Population [2] Language Religion % Christian % Evangl Online NT Jesus Film Progress
290,000 Malay Islam 0.00 % 0.00 %   

Malay, East Malaysia in Malaysia

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Introduction / History
Sarawak and Sabah, Malaysia's 12th and 13th states, are home to many different people groups including the East Malaysia Malay. They number a substantial minority in Sarawak and a smaller minority in Sabah. Like other Malay peoples, this people group brings its own distinct cultural practices that are different from other people groups of Sabah and Sarawak. Bahasa Malaysia is the language spoken.

What are their lives like?
Traditionally, the East Malaysia Malay worked as fishermen and traders. Today, many of them are employed in logging industries, palm-oil plantations, and civil industries. In addition, many work as government servants.

Intermarriage with other people groups is common for the East Malaysia Malay as long as the prospective partner is a Muslim. A non-Muslim spouse is expected to embrace Islam. Hence, the value of being a part of a family is significant.

For the most part, they dwell in villages consisting of Malay communities with shops, surau (small prayer hall), and other facilities. Some live alongside other East Malaysia people groups like the Bajau in waterfront homes. Due to years of fishing and using the ocean as a major source of transportation, homes are built on stilts right at the ocean's edge. Sleeping in one of these homes is quite an experience, as the water will gently rock the house with the movement of the waves. They also reside on land in different villages.

Good manners and respect is very important especially shown to the elders by the younger people. Elders are much respected by the community especially when they hold positions of Penghulus (village head), Pemajasa (someone who takes care of the law in the village ), or Temenggong (similar to a policeman in the village), in their respective communities. Hence, as is the case with most other Malaysian people groups, social networks function with a hierarchical system.

The value of saving face, observed in the community and workplace, is also deemed significant. It is unbecoming to cause another person to lose face. As a result, it is common to use members of another people group to convey a message which would be uncomfortable for the recipient.

What are their beliefs?
As followers of Islam, the East Malaysia Malay participates in the five pillars of Islam, and mosques are common landmark across the landscape of the state.

But as with their wedding traditions, traces of animistic and Hindu beliefs are still evident and openly discussed. The legend of the Penanggal (either a male or a female who is looking for the blood of a baby or a virgin girl) is a classic example. The Penanggal comes out at night and his head detaches from the body and flies around searching for a victim. Since those bitten by a Penanggal will die, people are careful to stay away from anyone who is suspected of being such a creature.

Funerals are consistent with Islamic practice as is male and female circumcision.

What are their needs?
There is a need for improvement in the basic standards of living among coastal Malay peoples. Working conditions because the Malay are a minority can be difficult in the logging and other export industries. Pray that believers in the main coastal cities would be eager to love and encourage their fellow East Malaysia Malay.

View Malay, East Malaysia in all countries.

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Country: Malaysia
Continent: Asia
Region: Southeast Asia
Persecution Rank:23 (Only top 50 ranked, 1 = highest persecution ranking)
10/40 Window: Yes
Location in Country:Widespread in Peninsular Malaysia; also in Sarawak state: Kuching, Samarahan, Sri Aman, and Betong districts.
(Source: Ethnologue 2016)
  Peoples [3]
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People Name in Country: Malay, East Malaysia
People Name General: Malay, East Malaysia
ROP3 Code: 115530
Joshua Project People ID: 19202
Indigenous: Yes
Population in Country: 290,000
Population all Countries: 290,000
Least-Reached: Yes
Affinity Bloc: Malay Peoples
People Cluster: Malay
People Name General: Malay, East Malaysia
Ethnic Code: MSY44k
Ethnic Relationships: Affinity Bloc -> People Cluster -> Peoples Ethnicity Tree
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Primary Language: Malay (290,000 Speakers)
Language Code (ISO): zlm    Ethnologue Listing
Total Languages: 1
Religion [4]
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Primary Religion: Islam
Major Religions:
Buddhism0.00 % 
Christianity0.00 %(Evangelical: 0.00 %)
Ethnic Religions0.00 % 
Hinduism0.00 % 
Islam100.00 % 
Non-Religious0.00 % 
Other / Small0.00 % 
Unknown0.00 % 
Christianity Segments:
Anglican0.00 %
Independent0.00 %
Protestant0.00 %
Orthodox0.00 %
Other Christian0.00 %
Roman Catholic0.00 %
(Evangelicals distributed across Christianity segments)
Progress Indicators [5]
Progress Scale[6]   Few evangelicals and few who claim to be Christians. Little, if any, history of Christianity.
Least-Reached: Yes
Bible Translation Status
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Bible Portions: 1629-1932
New Testament:
Complete Bible: 1733-2016
Possible Bible Sources: Forum of Bible Agencies
 World Bible Finder
 World Christian Resource Directory
 Gospel Go
Ministry Resources [7]
Audio RecordingsMegaVoice Audio Bible and Stories
Audio RecordingsAudio Bible teaching (GRN)
Audio RecordingsFather's Love Letter
Audio RecordingsOnline New Testament (FCBH)
Audio RecordingsStory of Jesus audio (Jesus Film Project ...
Film / VideoJesus Film: view in Malay
Film / VideoMy Last Day (Jesus Film Project Anime)
Film / VideoStory of Jesus for Children (JF Project)
GeneralFour Spiritual Laws
GeneralGot Questions Ministry
Text / Printed MatterBible: Bahasa Melayu - Malay
Text / Printed MatterEasyBibles
Text / Printed MatterEasyBibles
Text / Printed MatterWorld Missionary Press Booklets
Ministry Activity
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Data Notes
Data Sources

Malay, East Malaysia in Malaysia

Global                 Global
  Affinity Bloc             Global  
People Cluster
    Malay     Southeast Asia    
      Malay, East Malaysia Malaysia    
            People-by-Country (Profile)          
            Malay, East Malaysia in Malaysia          
      Religion Language  
      Islam     Malay  
    All Religions                              

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