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De'ang, Rumai in China


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Population [2] Language Religion % Christian % Evangl Online NT Jesus Film Progress
6,300 Palaung, Rumai Buddhism 0.00 % 0.00 % No   

De'ang, Rumai in China

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The Rumai have been combined with the Pale, Shwe, and Riang groups in China to form the official De'ang nationality. Each group speaks its own language and wears a different style of traditional dress, although all the groups acknowledge a common ancestry.

The De'ang claim to be the original inhabitants of northern Myanmar. Historical evidence does little to dispute their assertions. Before they migrated to Myanmar, the ancestors of the De'ang were reportedly settled in communities along the Nujiang River in northwest Yunnan as early as the second century BC. The Chinese claim the De'ang have been living in China continuously for more than two thousand years. Many of the current communities of De'ang in China, however, are almost certainly descended from small groups who migrated back into China earlier this century to escape military campaigns launched by the British against insurgents in northern Burma (Myanmar).

The Rumai De'ang celebrate many of the festivals of their Tai and Shan neighbors, including Songkran, the Water-Splashing Festival which takes place every April. The De'ang have a traditional drum called the gelengdang which is made from a hollowed tree trunk. Its ends are covered with ox-hide. Before using it, "it is filled with water through a hole in its body to make the ox-hide and inside of the drum damp so that the desired resonance can be produced."

Despite their conversion to the Theravada sect of Buddhism many centuries ago, the De'ang retain many of their pre- Buddhist animistic and shamanistic rituals. Many Buddhist monks are also the village witch doctors. They enter trances in order to contact the spirit world. The De'ang believe they should strive to do good works to gain merit for the next life.

Like most Theravada Buddhists, the De'ang believe fate predetermines the events of their lives. This results in them having little concern about changing their ways. Their consciences have long been silenced regarding sin. There are no known Christians among the Rumai in either China or Myanmar.

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Country: China
Continent: Asia
Region: Asia, Northeast
Persecution Rank:23 (Only top 50 ranked, 1 = highest persecution ranking)
10/40 Window: Yes
Location in Country:They inhabit a widespread area of northern Shan State in northern Myanmar. Between 4,000 and 5,000 Rumai Palaung inhabit China's Yunnan Province, in Longchuan and Rulili counties.
(Source: Peoples of the Buddhist World, 2004)
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Ethnolinguistic Map:University of Texas or other map
Linguistic Map:Ethnologue language map
  Peoples [3]
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People Name in Country: De'ang, Rumai
People Name General: De'ang, Rumai
Alternate People Names:
Black PalaungDe'ang Rumai
HumaiPalaung Rumai
ROP3 Code: 114033
Joshua Project People ID: 18435
Indigenous: Yes
Population in Country: 6,300
Population all Countries: 6,300
Least-Reached: Yes
Affinity Bloc: Southeast Asian Peoples
People Cluster: Mon-Khmer
People Name General: De'ang, Rumai
Ethnic Code: AUG03z
Ethnic Relationships: Affinity Bloc -> People Cluster -> Peoples Ethnicity Tree
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Primary Language: Palaung, Rumai (6,300 Speakers)
Language Code (ISO): rbb    Ethnologue Listing
Total Languages: 1
Religion [4]
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Primary Religion: Buddhism
Religion Sub-division:Theravada
Major Religions:
Buddhism98.00 % 
Christianity0.00 %(Evangelical: 0.00 %)
Ethnic Religions0.00 % 
Hinduism0.00 % 
Islam0.00 % 
Non-Religious2.00 % 
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
GSEC Status:Level 1   Less than 2% Evangelical. Some evangelical resources available, but no active church planting within past 2 years
Bible Translation Status
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Bible Portions: Yes
New Testament: None Reported
Complete Bible: None Reported
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)
Film / VideoJesus Film: view in Palaung, Rumai
Ministry Activity
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Data Notes
Data Sources

De'ang, Rumai in China

Global                 Global
  Affinity Bloc             Global  
People Cluster
    Mon-Khmer     Asia, Northeast    
      De'ang, Rumai China    
            People-by-Country (Profile)          
            De'ang, Rumai in China          
      Religion Language  
      Buddhism     Palaung, Rumai  
    All Religions                              

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