Thailand (MNN) — In Northeast Thailand, funerals have begun for children killed in a daycare center massacre. The attack killed 37, including several preschoolers.
Mourners gathered in Buddhist temples over the weekend. Many placed toys, flowers, or milk bottles beside the small coffins.
Joe Handley says Asian Access just completed a global summit in Thailand, not far from where the attack occurred. “We wanted to pray and come alongside our Thai brothers and sisters. So we dedicated a part of our gathering yesterday to pray for the country and the church, consoling and lamenting alongside them amid this awful tragedy.”
The attack took place not far from the border with Laos. It was carried out by a former policeman, who also murdered his wife and son. The attacker had been dismissed from the police for methamphetamine possession. Now, the Thai Prime Minister has announced a crackdown on drugs.
Handley says the whole country is in shock. The PM traveled to the scene on Friday, and the king visited the wounded in the hospital. Handley says, “Just think of the tremendous loss of those children that have been stabbed to death. Many of them are still in the hospital. One of the teachers was pregnant, and she lost her life. It’s an enormous tragedy. As the people head to Buddhist temples to mourn the loss, we’re mindful of where real hope can be found.”
“And that’s where I’d ask you to pray for the Thai church.”
Pray Thai Christians will display this hope to their neighbors.
Want to get involved? You can contact Asian Access. Handley says, “Depending on the sensitivity of the situation, we can connect people, or we can provide prayer pointers that at least be a conduit for people to be in touch.”
The header photo shows a Buddhist temple in Thailand. (Photo courtesy of Preecha.MJ, CC BY-SA 4.0 <https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0>, via Wikimedia Commons)