COUNTRIES: India, Sri Lanka

info source: Joshua Project


The Laccadive Mapilla people live on the Lakshadweep islands off the coast of India and in parts of Sri Lanka. Laccadive Mapiila migrated from the Kerala coast in the 7th century and they originally practiced Hinduism. The Laccadive Mapilla people were converted to Islam by Arab missionaries. Their community grew as Arab merchants and sailors married native women.

Today, their main economic source is their coconut supplies. The islands that many live on are fertile and covered with coconut trees. The many resources that come from the trees are used to supply their economy. Other foods are grown including, papayas, plantains, yams, sweet potatoes, maize, and beans.

The Laccadive Mappila follow their family lines through a matrilineal unit called Taravad.  The system following the female lineage started centuries ago when men were dealing in trade and had periodic absences from the island. Their absence made way for the adoption of matrilineal lines as their property was only spoken for if the women who stayed behind could officially speak for the family. The Laccadive Mapilla are monogamous but divorce is easy and common with over half of marriages ending in divorce. They are followers of the Shafite School, a Sunni branch of Islam. 

Partnership // Move Beyond

Please spend a few minutes in prayer for the following:

  • Pray that the Laccadive Mappila people will have the chance to hear a clear presentation of the gospel and that the Holy Spirit will stir in their hearts a desire for holiness.
  • Ask God to use believers to begin Bible studies and church planting among all Muslims in the Asia Pacific.
  • Pray that the Christians in this region will be bold in reaching out to their Laccadive Mappila neighbors with warmth and kindness presenting the message of the gospel.

  • Ask the Lord to call people who are ready and willing to go to India and Sri Lanka to share Christ with the Laccadive Mappila.