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Nosu, Butuo in China

Nosu, Butuo

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Nosu, Butuo in China map
Population [2] Language Religion % Christian % Evangl Online NT Jesus Film Progress
276,000 Nuosu Ethnic Religions 0.50 % 0.05 % No   

Nosu, Butuo in China

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The Butuo Nosu are a distinct language group within the larger Nosu ethnicity. The Nosu, in turn, have been officially counted as part of the Yi nationality by Chinese authorities. The Butuo Nosu share very little in common with other Yi groups in Yunnan, Guizhou, and Guangxi, except for some legends and general cultural traits. In many locations the Butuo Nosu live alongside the Suodi.

The Butuo Nosu originally lived farther north of their present location. Speaking of a neighboring area in northern Yunnan Province, one historian notes, "Between 1796 and 1821, the Chinese extended their influence. At times when the Chinese were weak, the [Nosu] expanded out of Daliangshan: for example in 1802, 1814, 1838-39, and from 1875 to 1892. By 1907, the Nosu controlled most areas, with the Chinese fortified in the towns. During the troubled times of the early Republic, the number of Chinese troops was reduced in the area, and the Nosu consequently became more troublesome: in 1919, they invaded Zhaojue, in 1920 they burned Xining, and in 1937 they killed the magistrate of Leibo."

The Butuo Nosu pride themselves on being tough, residual, and aggressive people. Their homes and villages are constructed with high fences, a sign of their violent and murderous past.

The Butuo Nosu practice a complex form of polytheism. They fear and appease numerous mountain deities and spirits of war, harvests, and rivers, among others. They tie these beliefs in with deep reverence for their ancestors.

The Butuo Nosu are a large, unreached people group. There are a few hundred Catholics among them, mostly elderly people who meet in Chinese-language churches. It is not known if the recent turning to Christ by 12,000 Nosu farther north has impacted the Butuo Nosu. Nosu audio tapes and the Jesus film are not understood by most Butuo Nosu.

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Prayer Links
Global Prayer Digest: 2016-07-18
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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:According to Professor James Matisoff, who heads up the Department of Tibeto- Burman Linguistic Studies at the University of California at Berkeley, there are "about 200,000 speakers" of the Butuo Nosu language in southern Sichuan Province. Their name comes from their primary location, Butuo County. Others are found across parts of Puge, Ningnan, Huidong, and Huili counties. The Butuo Nosu live at the southern end of the Daliangshan (Big Cold Mountains).
(Source: Operation China, 2000)
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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: Nosu, Butuo
People Name General: Nosu, Butuo
Alternate People Names:
Boo YiButuo Yi
East-Lower-Northern Yi
ROP3 Code: 114260
Joshua Project People ID: 18639
Indigenous: Yes
Population in Country: 276,000
Population all Countries: 276,000
Least-Reached: Yes
Affinity Bloc: Tibetan-Himalayan Peoples
People Cluster: Nosu
People Name General: Nosu, Butuo
Ethnic Code: MSY50i
Ethnic Relationships: Affinity Bloc -> People Cluster -> Peoples Ethnicity Tree
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Primary Language: Nuosu (276,000 Speakers)
Language Code (ISO): iii    Ethnologue Listing
Total Languages: 1
Religion [4]
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Primary Religion: Ethnic Religions
Major Religions:
Buddhism0.00 % 
Christianity0.50 %(Evangelical: 0.05 %)
Ethnic Religions95.50 % 
Hinduism0.00 % 
Islam0.00 % 
Non-Religious4.00 % 
Other / Small0.00 % 
Unknown0.00 % 
Christianity Segments:
Anglican0.00 %
Independent10.00 %
Protestant0.00 %
Orthodox0.00 %
Other Christian0.00 %
Roman Catholic90.00 %
(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 2   Less than 2% Evangelical. Initial (localized) church planting within past 2 years
Bible Translation Status
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Bible Portions: Yes
New Testament:
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)
Audio RecordingsStory of Jesus audio (Jesus Film Project ...
Film / VideoJesus film: view in Suodi
Film / VideoMy Last Day (Jesus Film Project Anime)
Film / VideoThe Hope Video
Film / VideoThe Source of Life
Film / VideoThe Source of Life
Film / VideoThe Source of Life (EngSub)
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

Nosu, Butuo in China

Global                 Global
  Affinity Bloc             Global  
People Cluster
    Nosu     Asia, Northeast    
      Nosu, Butuo China    
            People-by-Country (Profile)          
            Nosu, Butuo in China          
      Religion Language  
      Ethnic Religions     Nuosu  
    All Religions                              

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