Introduction / History
The Tai Khang people of Laos are farmers who depend on their rice harvest to keep them alive. Children are considered a blessing by the Tai Khang people, who depend on them to help plant and harvest rice. Some Tai Khang families have 10 or more children.
Where are they located?
The Tai Khang live in northern and central Laos near the Vietnamese border. Specifically, Tai Khang people live in the Xam-Tai District of the Houaphan Province in Laos. Smaller groups populate the Nongkhet District of the Xiangkhoang Province and the southern Viangthong District of the Borikhamxai Province. The Tai Khang are a quickly growing people group.
Some may also live in Vietnam, officially recognized as part of a Thai minority group.
What are their lives like?
The Tai Khang people are poor farmers who are always one rice harvest away from hunger.
What are their beliefs?
Traditionally, the Tai Khang are animists, though today there is dispute about whether their main religion is Buddhism or animism. Many Tai Khang have come under the influence of the surrounding Lao culture, and as a result have adopted Theravada Buddhism, the primary religion in Laos. The appeal of Buddhism when it was first introduced into Laos in the 5th century was that it was not exclusive, unlike Christianity. Buddhism allowed for the continuation of spirit worship, which still dominates the hearts of most Tai Khang.
What are their needs?
There are no known believers among the Tai Kang. Animistic spirit-worship and Theravada are two major, intertwined strongholds gripping the Tai Khang today. Some among them have listened to the gospel in broadcasts in other languages, but most remain unware of Christ or his promises as Savior. They will continue to depend on malevolent spirits until someone tells them about what Jesus did to save them.
* Pray that Tai Khang children who are sent to labor in the rice fields at an early age will find their worth and identity in God.
* Pray for Tai Khang families to be made strong in unity and in love.
* Pray for the Tai Khang to recognize the holiness of God, set apart from all other powers and spirits.
* Pray for God's glory to be revealed amongst the Tai Khang, and that his presence would scatter spiritual strongholds.
* Pray for a disciple making movement among the Tai Khang people of Laos.
Text source: Keith Carey