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O-Du in Laos


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Population [2] Language Religion % Christian % Evangl Online NT Jesus Film Progress
600 O'du Ethnic Religions 0.00 % 0.00 % No No   

O-Du in Laos

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Introduction / History
Linguist Frank Proschan listed a 1989 figure of 194 O Du people in Laos. They live in the Nonghet District of Xiangkhoang Province, directly on the Laos-Vietnam border. The area was previously known as Samnuea Province. Coincidentally, a 1995 study in Vietnam found there to be exactly the same number of O Du (194) living within that country.

In Vietnam the O Du are acknowledged as an official minority nationality, but in Laos the O Du are not officially recognized at all. It is uncertain which ethnic group they were counted under in the 1995 census. Neighboring people groups in Laos call the O Du Tay Hat, or Hat. This is a derogatory name meaning 'rag people'. They call themselves O Du.

Five centuries ago the O Du were a large and prosperous group who lived along the Nam Mon and Nam Mo rivers in both Laos and Vietnam. At different times they were attacked by the Tai Dam, Han Chinese, Hmong and Khmu, who chased them away and took them as slaves.

The O Du like to build their houses on stilts and have thatched straw roofs. Inside, rooms are partitioned off with plaited bamboo. Despite being on the verge of extinction, the few remaining O Du are proud of their ethnicity.

The O Du language, which is part of the Northern Mon-Khmer family, is on the verge of extinction. It is only spoken by a few elderly people, who are greatly respected because of it. The O Du believe they must learn their language again in their old age so that when they die they will be able to communicate with their ancestors. They fear if they cannot speak their language their ancestors will not be able to recognize them in the afterlife. In the same way, old O Du women carefully preserve a traditional garment. They put it on at the end of their lives so they can be presented to their ancestors.

The O Du are a very superstitious people. They worship a multitude of spirits. They believe each person has a soul. When someone dies their soul leaves the body and resides in the house, watching over the family's activities.

Jesus Christ has never been named among the O Du. They remain an unreached people in both Laos and Vietnam.

Prayer Points
The O Du have been slaves to people and demons for centuries. Pray they would soon find liberation in Christ.
Ask God to raise up laborers to plant churches among the O Du.
Pray that God would lead Khmu and Hmong believers to share the Gospel with the O Du.
* Pray for translation of the Bible to begin in this people group's primary language.
* Pray for the availability of the Jesus Film in the primary language of this people.
* Pray for Gospel messages to become available in audio format for this people group.

View O-Du in all countries.

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Country: Laos
Continent: Asia
Region: Asia, Southeast
Persecution Rank:31 (Only top 50 ranked, 1 = highest persecution ranking)
10/40 Window: Yes
Location in Country:Xiangkhoang province, Nonghet district
(Source: Faces of the Unreached in Laos, 1999)
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Country Map:Political map
Ethnolinguistic Map:University of Texas or other map
Linguistic Map:Ethnologue language map
  Peoples [3]
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People Name in Country: O-Du
People Name General: O-Du
Alternate People Names:
IduhO Du
Tay HatTay Phoong
ROP3 Code: 107591
Joshua Project People ID: 14118
Indigenous: Yes
Population in Country: 600
Population all Countries: 1,000
Least-Reached: Yes
Engagement Status:Unengaged (per Finishing the Task)
Affinity Bloc: Southeast Asian Peoples
People Cluster: Mon-Khmer
People Name General: O-Du
Ethnic Code: AUG03z
Ethnic Relationships: Affinity Bloc -> People Cluster -> Peoples Ethnicity Tree
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Primary Language: O'du
Language Code (ISO): tyh    Ethnologue Listing
Secondary Languages:
Khmu (Unknown)
Total Languages: 2
Religion [4]
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Primary Religion: Ethnic Religions
Major Religions:
Buddhism0.00 % 
Christianity0.00 %(Evangelical: 0.00 %)
Ethnic Religions100.00 % 
Hinduism0.00 % 
Islam0.00 % 
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
Engagement Status:Unengaged (per Finishing the Task)
GSEC Status:Level 0   No evangelical Christians or churches. No access to major evangelical print, audio, visual, or human resources
Bible Translation Status
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Bible Portions: Help start a Bible Translation
New Testament: None Reported
Complete Bible: None Reported
Ministry Resources [7]
None Reported
Ministry Activity
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Data Notes
Data Sources

O-Du in Laos

Global                 Global
  Affinity Bloc             Global  
People Cluster
    Mon-Khmer     Asia, Southeast    
      O-Du Laos    
            People-by-Country (Profile)          
            O-Du in Laos          
      Religion Language  
      Ethnic Religions     O'du  
    All Religions                              

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