United Methodist Missionaries serving in Thailand

United Methodist Missionaries serving in Thailand

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Send a check in the mail to: TMM P.O. Box 56 Mannsville, KY 42758 (Please make checks payable to TMM) Or give online by clicking this link:

We serve with the Thailand Methodist Mission

We serve with the Thailand Methodist Mission
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Tuesday, September 29, 2015

God is watching over us!

God is watching over us!
We have had problems with flooding in our sub-division for several years, and the water would run down our road like a river but it never made it all the way into the house.  But it kept getting worse and we knew that someday we would probably need to move.  However, we hate moving.  So we kept putting it off until some future date.  But it took a different reason to motivate us to move.

A 7-11 store near Blessing Home
Last month, Thailand Methodist Mission experienced growing pains when we had a missionary meeting.  Our numbers of missionaries and mission interns serving with TMM grew to the point that we could no longer fit everyone in our small house, which is what we have always done before.  So we had to move the two day meeting to a hotel with a large suite but this was a temporary solution that was not sustainable.
So the next week, God led us to a house that was large enough and very affordable to serve as the TMM Mission Center, where we could host meetings with missionaries and with Thai pastors and leaders.  The TMM Mission Center has been a great blessing and has allowed us to host meetings here rather than travel constantly.

Last week, we had severe flooding in Chonburi and Pattaya.  Blessing Home and the TMM Mission Center are both on high ground and were not flooded.  However, our old house was severely flooded.  If we did not move to the TMM Mission Center, we would have lost everything!

A Special Request
Each year churches, church groups, and individuals have taken special offerings for large needs and projects with the Thailand Methodist Mission.  One of the growing pains that our mission has is that we need a mini-van.  At the present time we have a sub-compact that has been the workhorse of the mission and still is.  But we need to be able to take teams of missionaries, interns, and volunteers around to the many ministries of TMM throughout Thailand, and we frequently must rent vans which can be very expensive.  Owning a mini-van would allow us to focus more funds directly with ministries to Thai people and less on transporting teams. 

We ask for all churches, church groups, and individuals that pray for and support Thailand Methodist Mission to take up special Christmas offerings and donations and help us to buy a mini-van.  We need $24,000.

If you would like to donate for this special project, write “VAN” on the memo section of the check or on the special designation field on the online giving form. 

Checks can be mailed to:
P.O. Box 56
Mannsville, KY 42758
Or give online at thailandmethodist.org

We are called to be pastors for those who serve sacrificially.
We have had the privilege to host many meetings and overnight stays at the TMM Mission Center, and it is an honor to host and serve those who serve sacrificially.  The TMM Mission Center is a place of healing and refreshing for Thai Pioneer Pastors who serve on the front lines in very lonely and difficult places that have not yet been reached.  Many Thai pastors have sat at the dining room table in tears talking about how difficult life is for them, and that it meant the world to them to come to the Center and be refreshed and to know that there are Christians in the States who love them, pray for them, and support them in their work for the Lord.

We also have the privilege of being pastors to the missionaries and mission interns who serve with TMM.  When we go to recruit missionaries, we speak very straight and let them know that TMM missionaries serve in the most difficult of places and circumstances.  This is not the life for those who want comfort or who want to be surrounded by fellow Christians who can speak the English language.  TMM missionaries are called to shine their lights where it is darkest, to serve in places where the need is most dire.

We tell Thai pastors and leaders that the most difficult facet of life for TMM missionaries is Sunday mornings.  All TMM ministries are Thai ministries.  That is our focus and purpose.  So the worship services are always in Thai language.  Which means that the for the first 2-3 years, missionaries will understand very little of what is being sung, preached, and prayed for in the worship service, until their language skills are strong enough to be able to fully partake in worship.

All of us are used to being spiritually fed on Sunday mornings at worship service.  We have the joy of singing worship songs, praying fervently, and hearing the Word of God in preaching, and these all fill us up spiritually.  But TMM missionaries go to church on Sunday for the first few years and do not yet have the language skills to understand everything.   So they must sit and look at the joyous faces of the Thai Christians as they worship.  They must watch others being fed spiritual food while being on a “spiritual fast”.  We tell the Thai pastors that this is like being invited to a nice restaurant with a group of people, and then you are told you must enjoy watching other people eat but you cannot eat yourself (even though you are hungry).  And there is joy in watching others eat spiritual food and being filled up.  But it can also be lonely and difficult.

It is in this context that Sherri and I serve as pastors to the TMM missionaries who devotedly serve Thai people with great fruitfulness.  TMM missionaries meet each month at the TMM Mission Center for a time of refreshing fellowship, passionate worship, and learning and reflection.  It is a time that is very much needed, so they can go back to their places of service and fulfill the call that God has placed upon them. 

So please keep the TMM missionaries and interns in your daily prayers, especially on Sunday mornings.

Saturday, September 05, 2015

Serendipities from God


the occurrence and development of wonderful events that are not looked for.

We are constantly blessed by God with serendipities, which we would define a bit different from the dictionary.  Serendipities are blessings that God bestows that we did not see coming that leave us in awe of the Lord’s grace and providence.

Here are some of the serendipitous blessing God has poured out upon us during the past two months.

1.  “Oh, by the way, we planted a new church in Sala Lamduan in Sakaeo Province.  And we built a church building too!”
            These were the words of Pastor Banya of Life Center Church in Pattaya just 2 months ago as he was leading a caravan of mission team members from Kentucky to visit this new church.  The members of Life Center Church have been taking special mission offerings every Sunday morning for the past several months to support mission projects like this church plant in Sakaeo province.  Pastor Banya and Elder Nopadon of Life Center Church alternate weekends preaching at three locations in Sakaeo province and the first weekend of every month, the members of the church send a team to do children’s ministries and food relief efforts as well.
            This new church plant, the first Christian church in Sala Lamduan county, is some of the fruit of their ministry.

2.  “Oh, by the way, we opened a new Blessing Home center in Ta Phraya.”
            These were the words of Pastor Banya when we went to Ta Phraya two months ago and saw this sign on the building used for the church.

Pastor Banya has trained Elders Det and Dao, a couple who he has disciple over the past three years, to lead children’s ministries and relief efforts in Ta Phraya.  Now the Thailand Methodist Mission has provided scholarships to Det and Dao as they have begun studies towards their Bachelor of Ministry degrees through the Distance Learning program at Global Theological Seminary.  Now, children are being helped with food assistance and Christian witness through their fruitful ministry.  Starting in April 2016, scholarships and educational assistance will be provided to needy children in Ta Phraya.  Our goal is to have every child in this community go to school and stay in school to high school graduation.

3.  “I have good news, I started a cell group at my university!  And we meet every week for Bible study, prayer and worship!”

            These were the words of Kao Poat, one of the Blessing Home Isan students who has graduated from high school and is now receiving a full scholarship to earn her B.A. degree in English Studies at St. Theresa International College.  The nearest church to Kao Poat is almost an hour’s drive away by bus.  There is no church in the county where St. Theresa International College is located.  In fact, there is no church in the whole Ongkarak district, which has a total of eleven unreached counties.  Now this 18 year old Freshman college student has started the first Christian cell group in the whole district!

            Kao Poat could not contain her joy about the cell group and we are very proud of her.  She really made our day!

4.  “Did you know that I am working together with another Thai pastor to train pastors from Laos in Biblical Studies?  They are persecuted by their government and cannot receive training in Laos, so we bring them here.  I teach both the New Testament Survey and Old Testament Survey classes.”

            These were the words of Pastor Peak, a TMM Pioneer Pastor far in the northern region of Thailand near the border of Laos.  And we had no idea that Pastor Peak was also serving as a missionary helping pastors in a foreign land. 

This year, Pastor Peak graduated with his Master of Ministry degree from Global Theological Institute, the Bible college that TMM sponsors in Northern Thailand.  And now he is using his education to help Laotian pastors who are starved for a Biblical education.  The Laotian pastors come across the border early in the morning and study all day.  Then in the evening, they go across the border back into Laos.  Each course if for one to two weeks in length.  Not only has Pastor Peak planted the first Christian church in his county of Fai Khwang, but also making an eternal difference in the lives of Laotian people as well. 

GOD IS GOOD!  May the Lord receive all the honor, praise and glory!  We are greatly blessed to work with such devoted Thai Christians who sacrifice deeply to serve the Lord!

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Kentucky Annual Conference Volunteers in Mission Team

We want to thank all who sponsored members of the Kentucky Annual Conference Volunteer In Mission Team.  They were a great blessing to us and the Thai people and it was your prayers and support that made it all possible.  The Kentucky VIM Team worked hard to get the new expansion of Blessing Home Ground Zero completed for the arrival of our new missionaries, the Johnston Family.
We think we wore as much paint on our bodies as we applied to the walls!

The team also did English Mini-camps at Blessing Home Isan and at Ta Phraya, one of our Pioneer Pastor church plant locations.

Pastor Banya, the director of Blessing Home, has opened a new branch location of Blessing Home in Ta Phraya.  Every weekend, Pastor Banya and Elder Nopadon take turns making the 6 hour drive to Ta Phraya to preach at two church locations and conduct children's Bible clubs and English mini-camps.

Ta Phraya contains some of the most crushing poverty we have seen.  There are many families here that consist of seniors in their 60s, 70s, and 80s who are caring for toddlers and children.  They do not have enough money to buy food and they and the children go hungry.  Malnutrition is rampant.  A very high percentage of the children cannot go to school.  There were also many seniors who were shut-ins that did not have financial support.  These shut-ins were not only lonely, but suffered from malnutrition because they depended upon the generosity of impoverished neighbors for food and water, and these neighbors were also deprived of adequate food.  Many of the shut-ins told the Kentucky VIM team that they go for many days without food because no one can help them.

The church at Ta Phraya has set up a relief program to help these starving families and seniors, but they do not have enough resources on their own.  The Christians of Life Center UMC in Pattaya as well as the Thailand Methodist Mission are now providing funds to provide food and potable water to these desperate people.  The village chief in this town expressed his great appreciate for the compassion in action of Christians.

We are in the process of making detailed plans with Pastor Banya for opening a new Blessing Home center here in Ta Phraya and planting multiple churches in this unreached region.

Fun and Games with the students at Blessing Home Isan

The Kentucky VIM team danced with the members of Nonsomboon church with traditional Isan worship music,

The sign for the new Blessing Home branch in Ta Phraya.  At this time it is very rustic!

The Kentucky VIM team