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Itneg, Southern in Philippines

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Itneg, Southern in Philippines map
Population [2] Language Religion % Christian % Evangl Online NT Jesus Film Progress
24,000 Itneg, Maeng Christianity 57.00 % 15.00 % No No   

Itneg, Southern in Philippines

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Introduction / History
Itneg is an alternate name of Tinguian. Tinguian means "the people of the mountains," It was originally used to refer to all mountain dwelling people. These days it is particularly used to refer to a cultural minority group occupying the mountains of Abra. The Tinguian are listed as one of the Cordillerean people called "Igorots". Some feature of the culture, customs, traditions, rituals, beliefs and ethnic values are the same with the Igorots.

In Abra, they comprise 35 percent of the total population and occupy about two thirds of the province's land area. The people live in scattered villages and cover a large area. Most of them live in settlements usually found near river banks. Dwellings are usually built in clusters with rice granary and vegetable patches. Two or three adjacent settlements generally compose a village.

Present day Tinguians resemble the Ilocanos in bodily proportions and have adopted the Ilocano way of life. Tinguians are almost identical to the Ilocanos. They have abandoned the g-string and other extremes and they behave and dress like their Ilocano neighbors.

In addition, the Tinquians are also influenced by education and the "Christian religion". During the fifties and sixties they faced an identity crisis. But due to the new government policy on indigenous people and cultural minorities, many of the Tinguian elders and professionals with the help of concerned groups tried to revive the cultural traditions and maintain/keep the Tinguian identity which they can be proud of.

Music is an important aspect of Tinguian culture. Singing is a normal occurrence in the community and in the work fields. Their musical instruments are the "kalalent" (nose flute) the gangsa (copper gongs) and the "kulintang" (guitar).

The Tinguian are a language group. They are divided into several sub-groups by dialectical differences: Adasen, Binongan, Gubang or Banao, Inlaod - penanubia, Maeng (also called Assa), Masadiit, Moradan, and Mabaca.

Economic life is based on agriculture. It is the principal source of income for the people. Agricultural products are rice, camote, yams, corn, squash, ginger, melon, sugar cane, fruits, and good quality cotton and tobacco. Aside from being farmers, they also do fresh water fishing, weaving various types of cloths and blanket, pottery making, and basketry.

A Tinguian village is usually headed by one of the old men or "lakay" chosen by a council of elder members of the village. A "lakay" is chosen based on his courage, health, wisdom and character. His role is to settle disputes in accordance with the customs and traditions. If a dispute is serious or the problem is new, he calls the council of elders or heads of influential families to discuss and decide with him.

What are their beliefs?
Traditional religion is based on beliefs in the spirits or anitos, locally called "sasailo" who are natural deities, leader spirits (good or bad), and ancestral spirits. Spirits are revered and feared. They have adopted certain measures to protect themselves and property. They conduct ceremonies, offer food and drinks, and perform magical acts to ill-disposed spirits to assure good harvests.

The Spanish Augustinian missionaries started work in the mountains of Abra, and converted many Tinguians. Historians write that many towns and districts are now recognized as Ilocano and have Christianized Tinguians. Some of the Catholic teachings accommodated and combined with indigenous beliefs and practices. Present day Tinguians are Christians but they have not totally put aside their worship, beliefs and superstitions centering around the "sasailo" cocept. They reconcile their traditional faith with Christianity. They now believe in one supreme being who creates and controls life. The lesser spirits are said to be similar to the patron saints of the Catholic Church. Like the Catholics, they worship and ask intercession for the religious observances that go with various paraphernalia, bamboo arches, Basi (drink offerings), and musical instruments. Protective necklaces are used by children. Cults are in the area.

Prayer Points
* Believers to continue their walk with Christ and grow in their faith.
* Large portions of Tinguians are yet to be reached. Pray for culturally sensitive workers to continue reaching this people.
* Ilocano believers near the area to reach out this people.
* New Testament to be distributed, read and understood by this people for salvation.
* Cults are very active in the area. Christian and gospel workers will take the challenge of the cults.
* Need a clean witness of Christ in the midst of different questionable doctrinal persuasions; they will be freed from false doctrine.
* 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.

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Country: Philippines
Continent: Asia
Region: Asia, Southeast
10/40 Window: No
Location in Country:Luzon, south Abra Province, Luba, Tubo, and Villavisciosa municipalities.
(Source: Ethnologue 2016)
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Linguistic Map:Ethnologue language map
  Peoples [3]
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People Name in Country: Itneg, Southern
People Name General: Itneg, Southern
Alternate People Names:
Ma-engSouthern Itneg
ROP3 Code: 109483
Joshua Project People ID: 15044
Indigenous: Yes
Population in Country: 24,000
Population all Countries: 24,000
Least-Reached: No
Affinity Bloc: Malay Peoples
People Cluster: Filipino, Tribal
People Name General: Itneg, Southern
Ethnic Code: MSY44x
Ethnic Relationships: Affinity Bloc -> People Cluster -> Peoples Ethnicity Tree
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Primary Language: Itneg, Maeng
Language Code (ISO): itt    Ethnologue Listing
Secondary Languages:
Ilocano (Unknown)
Total Languages: 2
Religion [4]
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Primary Religion: Christianity
Religion Sub-division:Roman Catholic
Major Religions:
Buddhism0.00 % 
Christianity57.00 %(Evangelical: 15.00 %)
Ethnic Religions43.00 % 
Hinduism0.00 % 
Islam0.00 % 
Non-Religious0.00 % 
Other / Small0.00 % 
Unknown0.00 % 
Christianity Segments:
Anglican0.00 %
Independent0.00 %
Protestant10.00 %
Orthodox0.00 %
Other Christian0.00 %
Roman Catholic90.00 %
(Evangelicals distributed across Christianity segments)
Progress Indicators [5]
Progress Scale[6]   Evangelicals have a significant presence.
Least-Reached: No
GSEC Status:Level 6   Greater than or equal to 10% Evangelical
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]
Audio RecordingsMegaVoice Audio Bible and Stories
Audio RecordingsAudio Bible teaching (GRN)
Ministry Activity
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Data Notes
Data Sources

Itneg, Southern in Philippines

Global                 Global
  Affinity Bloc             Global  
People Cluster
    Filipino, Tribal     Asia, Southeast    
      Itneg, Southern Philippines    
            People-by-Country (Profile)          
            Itneg, Southern in Philippines          
      Religion Language  
      Christianity     Itneg, Maeng  
    All Religions                              

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