Khmer Krom in Cambodia

The Khmer Krom have only been reported in Cambodia
Main Language
Largest Religion
Buddhism (Theravada)
Progress Gauge

Introduction / History

Kampuchea Krom or Khmer Krom translates literally as 'lower Cambodians.' They are descendants of the original Khmer inhabitants of what is now southern Vietnam. The Khmer controlled the region until the early 1600s. The Vietnamese government attempts to minimize the importance of the rural Khmer population by drastically lowering the numbers. Kampuchea Krom have migrated from Vietnam and now live within the borders of Cambodia. Because of linguistic, political and social factors they are distinct in many ways from the wider Khmer population in Cambodia.

What Are Their Lives Like?

More and more young Kampuchea Krom are becoming integrated into Vietnamese society as national schools teach only in Vietnamese. Khmer temple schools provide the only opportunities for learning to read and write the Khmer language. Even with these factors, there are still millions of Kampuchea Krom who conduct their daily lives using the Khmer language.
Typically, the Kampuchea Krom are rural people who live in villages outside of the main cities. Daily life consists of subsistence farming and agriculture. Many young men seek education and opportunities as monks in the Buddhist temples.

What Are Their Beliefs?

The main religion of the Kampuchea Krom is Theravada Buddhism. Kampuchea Krom beliefs do not include a concept of a living God. The goal of their religious devotion and rituals is to obtain merit that might somehow enable them to escape the cycle of reincarnation and achieve Nirvana, a state or place of nothingness.
Theravada Buddhism is the public veneer of Kampuchea Krom religion, but animistic belief in the spirit world may have more of a hold on their daily lives. The Kampuchea Krom keep an altar outside their homes where they offer food and incense to the spirit world daily. Their actions are driven by the fear that these spirits can cause them harm if not appeased. Fortune tellers are regularly consulted at times of trouble or desire because of their perceived links to the spirit world.

What Are Their Needs?

As Buddhists, the Khmer Krom do not understand the reality of sin and their need for Jesus as their savior. They have had very little opportunity to hear about Jesus, and for the most part they are extremely poor. There are only a few thousand Christians among this vast people group. The fields are white unto harvest, and those who are hearing are also showing a hunger to know and understand more. The workers are few!

Prayer Points

Ask God to strengthen the Christians among the Khmer Krom and to give them a vision for spreading the gospel.
Ask God to bless the believers both spiritually and materially in ways that will demonstrate his love and power to the many non-believers around them.
Pray for a movement to Christ among the Khmer Krom that will lead to disciples and churches that multiply through many generations and that will touch every city, town, and village where they live.

Scripture Prayers for the Khmer Krom in Cambodia.


Cambodia Research Network. Click to email CRN inquiries and corrections, Copyrighted © Used with permission

Profile Source:   Joshua Project  

People Name General Khmer Krom
People Name in Country Khmer Krom
Pronunciation kuh-MARE krum
Alternate Names Southern Khmer
Population this Country 287,000
Population all Countries 287,000
Total Countries 1
Indigenous Yes
Progress Scale 1
Unreached Yes
Frontier People Group No
Pioneer Workers Needed 6
People ID 18988
ROP3 Code 115792
ROP25 Code 303614
ROP25 Name Khmer Krom
Country Cambodia
Region Asia, Southeast
Continent Asia
10/40 Window Yes
National Bible Society Website
Persecution Rank Not ranked
Location in Country Widespread   Source:  Ethnologue 2016
Country Cambodia
Region Asia, Southeast
Continent Asia
10/40 Window Yes
National Bible Society Website
Persecution Rank Not ranked
Location in Country Widespread.   Source:  Ethnologue 2016
Map of Khmer Krom in Cambodia Ethnolinguistic map or other map

Primary Religion: Buddhism (Theravada)
Major Religion Percent
89.90 %
Christianity  (Evangelical 1.30 %)
3.10 %
Ethnic Religions
5.00 %
0.00 %
0.00 %
2.00 %
Other / Small
0.00 %
0.00 %
Primary Language Khmer (287,000 speakers)
Language Code khm   Ethnologue Listing
Language Written Yes   ScriptSource Listing
Total Languages 1
Primary Language Khmer (287,000 speakers)
Language Code khm   Ethnologue Listing
Total Languages 1
People Groups Speaking Khmer

Primary Language:  Khmer

Bible Translation Status  (Years)
Bible-Portions Yes  (1899-1933)
Bible-New Testament Yes  (1929-1993)
Bible-Complete Yes  (1954-2024)
FCBH NT ( Online
YouVersion NT ( Online
Possible Print Bibles
World Bibles
Forum Bible Agencies
National Bible Societies
World Bible Finder
Virtual Storehouse
Resource Type Resource Name Source
Audio Recordings Audio Bible teaching Global Recordings Network
Audio Recordings Love letter to you from scripture Father's Love Letter
Audio Recordings Online Audio Scripture Talking Bibles
Audio Recordings Oral Bible stories One Story
Audio Recordings Story of Jesus audio Jesus Film Project
Film / Video God's Story video God's Story
Film / Video Video / Animation Create International
Film / Video Jesus Film: view in Khmer Jesus Film Project
Film / Video LUMO film of Gospels Bible Media Group/LUMO
Film / Video Magdalena video Jesus Film Project
Film / Video My Last Day video, anime Jesus Film Project
Film / Video Rock International: King of Glory Rock International
Film / Video Story of Jesus for Children Jesus Film Project
Film / Video The Hope Video Mars Hill Media
Film / Video World Christian Videos World Christian Videos
General Bible for Children Bible for Children
General Biblical answers to your questions Got Questions Ministry
General Faith Comes By Hearing - Bible in text or audio or video Faith Comes by Hearing
General Faith Comes By Hearing - Bible in text or audio or video Faith Comes by Hearing
General Four Spiritual Laws Campus Crusade for Christ
General Scripture Earth Gospel resources links Scripture Earth
General YouVersion Bible versions in text and/or audio YouVersion Bibles
Mobile App Android Bible app direct APK download SIL
Mobile App Android Bible app: Khmer YouVersion Bibles
Mobile App Download audio Bible app as APK file Faith Comes by Hearing
Photo Source Copyrighted © 2024  Cambodia Research Network  All rights reserved.  Used with permission
Map Source People Group location: Cambodia Research Network. Map geography: ESRI / GMI. Map design: Joshua Project.  
Profile Source Joshua Project 
Data Sources Data is compiled from various sources. Learn more.

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