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Javanese in Sri Lanka


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Javanese in Sri Lanka map
Population [2] Language Religion % Christian % Evangl Online NT Jesus Film Progress
8,800 Javanese Islam 0.00 % 0.00 %   

Javanese in Sri Lanka

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Introduction / History
The Javanese (Orang Jawa, "people of Java") originate from Central Java, Indonesia. In Sri Lanka, they are blended in with others who speak a Malay-based language. Therefore, they are considered "Malay" by many people. The Javanese have their own language called "Jawa" which is not spoken by the majority peoples in Sri Lanka. The Jawa language is still the language of the Javanese people in Sri Lanka, but they need to converse in either Tamil or Sinhalese, the two dominant languages of that island nation.

Where are they located?
Most Javanese live either in their native land, Indonesia or nearby Malaysia, but they are also in other countries, even some in Europe. Though they aren't prevalent in South Asia, there are a small number in Sri Lanka.

What are their lives like?
They are a hospitable people, usually inviting visitors to share a meal with the family. Families are often quite large, some having between 10 and 17 children. Marriages are grand affairs that sometimes last up to three days. The giving of love gifts to the newlyweds is common. Emphasis is placed on helping one another during weddings rather than receiving large sums of money.

What are their beliefs?
They have been Muslims for centuries, but in the 1960s, they had a revival in Indonesia where many turned to Christ for life's answers. This revival did not affect the Javanese who had migrated to Sri Lanka, so these Javanese remain Muslim. The Javanese have a strong commitment Islam for cultural reasons.

During their Sunni Muslim weddings and circumcision rituals, they perform the jedur (songs of praise to the prophet Mohammed) which is compiled in a book called Silawatan. They also perform the kempling (a type of dance giving praise to Allah) during religious occasions.

What are their needs?
The Javanese in Sri Lanka need the chance to allow Jesus Christ to bless and transform their lives, families and communities.

Prayer Points
Pray for gospel workers to catch a vision for reaching the Javanese people in Sri Lanka for Jesus and that in God's sovereign timing their hearts would be open and ready to follow Him.
Pray for Jesus movements to bless extended Javanese families so the gospel will spread rapidly among this people group.
Pray for the spiritual lives of the Javanese people in Sri Lanka to become fruitful as they follow Christ.
Pray for the lives and culture of the Javanese people to evidence the rule and reign of the Kingdom of God as they open to the gospel, and for the beauty of Jesus to be seen in them.


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Country: Sri Lanka
Continent: Asia
Region: Asia, South
10/40 Window: Yes
Population in Country:8,800
Largest Provinces:
Eastern (4,500)Western (2,700)
North Western (600)Southern (600)
Northern (200)Central (100)
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Country Map:Political map
Linguistic Map:Ethnologue language map
  Peoples [3]
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People Name in Country: Javanese
People Name General: Javanese
Alternate People Names:
JawaOrang Jawa
ROP3 Code: 112316
Joshua Project People ID: 17000
Indigenous: No
Population in Country: 8,800
Population all Countries: 18,383,000
Least-Reached: Yes
Affinity Bloc: Malay Peoples
People Cluster: Java
People Name General: Javanese
Ethnic Code: CNN25
Ethnic Relationships: Affinity Bloc -> People Cluster -> Peoples Ethnicity Tree
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Primary Language: Javanese (8,800 Speakers)
Language Code (ISO): jav    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: 1852-1991
New Testament:
Complete Bible: 1854-2017
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
Audio RecordingsDAVAR Partners recording, complete Bible
Audio RecordingsOnline Audio Scripture
Audio RecordingsOnline New Testament
Audio RecordingsOnline New Testament
Audio RecordingsOral Bible stories
Audio RecordingsStory of Jesus audio
Film / Video / Animation
Film / VideoJesus Film: view in Javanese
Film / VideoLove letter to you from scripture
Film / VideoLUMO film of Gospels
Film / VideoMy Last Day video, anime
Film / VideoThe Hope Video
Film / VideoWorld Christian Videos
GeneralBible for Children
GeneralBiblical answers to your questions
GeneralFour Spiritual Laws
GeneralGospel resources links
Mobile AppDownload audio Bible app as APK file
Mobile AppDownload audio Bible app from Google Pla ...
Text / Printed MatterBible: Javanese
Text / Printed MatterLiteracy primer for Javanese
Text / Printed MatterTopical Scripture booklets and Bible stu ...
Ministry Activity
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Description: Register your ministry activity among this people group. Contact the Adopt-A-People Clearinghouse and Unleashed for the Unreached to learn about others that might be focused on this people group.
Data Notes
Data Sources

Javanese in Sri Lanka

Global                 Global
  Affinity Bloc             Global  
People Cluster
    Java     Asia, South    
      Javanese Sri Lanka    
            People-by-Country (Profile)          
            Javanese in Sri Lanka          
      Religion Language  
      Islam     Javanese  
    All Religions                              

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