(Photo by Puuikibeach)
Thailand (MNN) ― Nearly 95% of Thailand's population is Buddhist. The country has been resistant to Christianity, although missionaries first brought the Gospel in the 1500s.
Today, the growth of the body of Christ is outpaced by the population growth and has been falling behind for four decades.
Missions has also changed over those last 40 years. Rather than insert an outsider body into the indigenous, believers are more likely to work with the nationals, evangelize, disciple, train and mentor them in their new faith.
That's why The Evangelical Alliance Mission is working with a team to put together a strategic outreach plan in Thailand.
Kennedy and Wendy Paizs serve in Thakua Pa, Phang-gna, working with the Buddhist people. Their vision is for a reproducing a church-planting movement among Thai Buddhists.
Nancy Sturrock, Senior Director for Consulting Networks, will be meeting with them in Chiang Mai next week to help them develop the first draft of their plan.
The bigger picture for this church-planting movement is getting other Asian countries involved. They're eventually hoping to see more people from the Philippines come and serve as missionaries. Kennedy notes that Singapore also has a strong church and missionary focus, as does China. In fact, it is well documented that China has a growing number of believers who are now being sent out as missionaries.
There are many exciting possibilities to impact Thai Buddhists for Christ. Equally motivating are the opportunities to prepare Thais for ministry in discipleship and sending them, or going with them, as missionaries to the unreached areas of their own land.
Pray for the team as they work on the details of their plan. Pray for insight, clarity and the ability to communicate with other church bodies throughout the region.