Introduction / History Gelao means "human beings" as well as "bamboo." The Gelao are thought to be descended from the ancient Liao race who established the Yelang Kingdom in Guizhou Province about 2,000 years ago. A folk tale tells how the king of Yelang was born from bamboo, so the whole group came to be called "bamboo." In the past, the Gelao practiced initiation rites for their young men, including tooth-breaking and hair-cutting rituals. The Gelao peoples were once head-hunters and cannibals.
Where are they located? The Green Gelao people live in China's Guizhou Province and in northern Vietnam.
What are their lives like? The Green Gelao primarily grow maize, wheat, potatoes, sorghum, millet, tobacco, and tea. Their dialect is almost extinct, and it is being replaced by other languages such as Vietnamese and Hmong.
What are their beliefs? The Green Gelao people are primarily ancestor worshipers who also practice traditional religion. They worship the spirit of the rice paddies, the spirit of burn over land, and the spirits that protect their livestock. At special festivals they make offerings to these spirits for protection.
What are their needs? It might take bold believers with a special gift of faith to go to the Green Gelao people and pray for their needs. This people group will need to see God at work in a powerful way to put their faith in Jesus Christ rather than the spirit world.
Prayer Points * Ask for the Lord of the Harvest to send workers into this field to tell the Green Gelao people that they have been specially created for a unique purpose: to know, love and worship Jesus Christ.
* Pray for the Green Gelao people to have a strong spiritual hunger that will lead them to the Savior of all mankind.
* Pray for God to reveal His grace and love to the Green Gelao people so that they will want Him as their savior.
* Pray for a strong discipling ministry that will transform Gelao communities in Vietnam into His likeness. * 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. * Pray for Gospel messages to become available in audio format for this people group.