Thailand (MNN) — The nation of Thailand is predominately Buddhist. However, Book of Hope International is doing everything they can to change that.
<i>Book of Hope's</i> Cina Silva says a <i>Book of Hope</i> is an age-specific harmony of the Gospels. She says they've handed out many in Thailand. "We have given out about 2.5 million copies of the Book of Hope to children and youth in the last five years. And this is amazing because [it's] a nation that's predominately Buddhist — less than one percent Christian."
According to Silva, "This translates into about 300,000 Christians in a nation of about 65 million."
The interesting thing is the children of Thailand are open to hearing the Gospel, says Silva. "It's not that they've rejected it. They've actually never heard the Gospel. Because of this, we have four age-appropriate versions and also something that's being launched right now, this month, in Thailand: a version of the <i>Godman</i> for Buddhist children and youth."
<i>Godman</i> is a 3D animated film on the life of Christ. Each version has a real life, culturally relevant drama that sets up the animation. The film is being launched in the local churches, first. However, there are plans to put the film on television.
According to Silva, the schools are opening their doors to the <i>Book of Hope</i>. "We have topics in there such as self esteem, love, family, health, and addictions, and these are a concern to educators. So they are opening their schools and saying, 'Come in.'"
Silva says the <i>Godman</i> and Vision 2010 is going to propel <i>Book of Hope</i> distribution to 1 million next year alone. Vision 2010 is a grass-roots effort by the local church. "Their goal is to take a Gospel witness to every one of the 17,000 villages across Thailand and to see a Bible-believing church planted in every one of the 1,000 governmental districts."
Right now, Book of Hope needs teams to go to Thailand. "We love having teams there. It helps a whole lot. It get more attention. All of the events are better attended because they want to come and see the Americans, especially when there are American teenagers that come on a team."