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Katso in China


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Katso in China map
Population [2] Language Religion % Christian % Evangl Online NT Jesus Film Progress
8,400 Katso Ethnic Religions 0.05 % 0.05 % No No   

Katso in China

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The Katso are a distinct people group. They deliberately separate themselves and refuse to intermarry with people from other nationalities. Despite having been cut off from their homeland for seven centuries, the Katso proudly retain their ethnic identity as Mongols.

The Mongolian empire gained control over southwest China in 1252 when they overthrew the ancient Nanzhao Kingdom in Dali. They ruled Yunnan for 129 years, extracting annual taxes and tribute which were sent north to fill the coffers of the Yuan Dynasty rulers. In 1381, "Ming Dynasty troops routed the Yuan army by the shore of the Baishi River. The Mongol soldiers, their hopes to return to their homeland having been dashed, had no alternative but to settle down in the province." Their ancestors have today grown to 7,000 people around Jihulu Lake.

The Katso women's dress is said to resemble the uniform of the original Mongol soldiers. During the hotter part of the year, they wear cloth instead of fur and cut off the sleeves.

In the early 1980s, village elders sent a delegation to Inner Mongolia to learn about Mongolian culture. They immediately adopted customs similar to Mongols in the north. Wrestling became their favorite sport when they saw how popular it was with other Mongols.

The religion of the Katso is a mixture of Buddhism and Daoism. Posters of fierce Daoist deities hang on the doors and gates of their homes to ward off evil spirits. A few Mongol families are Muslims. They were converted to Islam by the neighboring Hui community, located near the entrance to the Mongolian village.

There is no Christian church among the Katso. The few efforts to take the gospel to them have been met with stubborn resistance and opposition from village leaders and local police who are eager to preserve the Mongolian traditions they had neglected for centuries and who are careful to shun all change to their society. In the 1980s, a Mongolian Christian from northern China visited this village, hoping he would be able to influence the Katso to become Christians. He too was rejected by the locals.

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Country: China
Continent: Asia
Region: Asia, Northeast
Persecution Rank:27 (Only top 50 ranked, 1 = highest persecution ranking)
10/40 Window: Yes
Location in Country:Yunnan province: Yuxi prefecture, Tonghai county, Xingmeng Mongolian autonomous township.
(Source: Ethnologue 2016)
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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: Katso
People Name General: Katso
ROP3 Code: 115846
Joshua Project People ID: 19683
Indigenous: Yes
Population in Country: 8,400
Population all Countries: 8,400
Least-Reached: Yes
Affinity Bloc: East Asian Peoples
People Cluster: Mongolian
People Name General: Katso
Ethnic Code: MSY41f
Ethnic Relationships: Affinity Bloc -> People Cluster -> Peoples Ethnicity Tree
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Primary Language: Katso (8,400 Speakers)
Language Code (ISO): kaf    Ethnologue Listing
Total Languages: 1
Religion [4]
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Primary Religion: Ethnic Religions
Major Religions:
Buddhism10.00 % 
Christianity0.05 %(Evangelical: 0.05 %)
Ethnic Religions60.00 % 
Hinduism0.00 % 
Islam0.00 % 
Non-Religious29.95 % 
Other / Small0.00 % 
Unknown0.00 % 
Christianity Segments:
Anglican0.00 %
Independent100.00 %
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 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

Katso in China

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

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