Two weeks ago, we hired a new member of the Thailand Mission Team. Meet Nittaya, who is our assistant. She is an incredibly gifted young woman who comes from Victory Church in Sriracha. Nittaya is fluent in English (she spent 3 years in high school in Canada) and Thai is her native language. She will be doing translating training materials and curriculum for pastors and church leaders as well as helping in other translating needs such as VIM teams and meetings. We are very blessed to have her on board. Her translation services came in handy when Bishop Jung (Northern Illinois Conference), and Drs. Elaine and Philip Amerson (Garrett Evangelical Theological Seminary) came to Thailand last week on an exploratory visit to find ways to work with each other to provide theological education to United Methodist pastors and church leaders in Thailand, Laos, and Vietnam.
Bishop Jung and the Amersons went to Bangsaray to have dinner and fellowship with our cell group members there. While there, Bishop Jung was able to pray for healing for a man who had cancer and was very near death and Sherri had the privilege of praying with that man to receive Christ! Bishop Jung's sincere love was experienced by all in the cell group. Next, we visited Pastors Jerron and On at the Bowin Church and Dr. Elaine was used by the Lord to be a source of encouragement for this young couple in ministry.
Bishop Jung and the Amersons also met with Dr. Somsak of Phayao Bible College, who is a tremendous source of wisdom on Christian education and church ministry in Thailand. On Sunday, Bishop Jung preached while Pastor Sarah translated, and they were a great duo for the Lord. Bishop Mawia of Burma was able to join us for worship at Pradumri, and it was a privilege to have him with us. Please pray for the people of Burma, especially our UM sisters and brothers there.
Over the course of 4 days, Bishop Jung and Drs. Philip and Elaine Amerson gave us a lesson on "The Connection". They are helping us to connect with people from all over United Methodism that have a connection to the people of Thailand. We have many pages of notes from our meetings, with many names of people we will be contacting that can help. Our UM connection is a beautiful relationship. Bishop Jung extended an invitation to us to participate in the Korean United Methodist Mission Conference in Chicago at the end of October. Sherri will be attending this event.
While Sherri is back in the states, she will also attend the Annual Meeting of the Kentucky Conference United Methodist Women. Last year we could not attend because we were leaving for Thailand, so it is a serendipitous opportunity for Sherri to be there this year. The United Methodist Women of Kentucky are our prayer warriors and supporters. They are a blessing to us and the people of Thailand!
Well, it is getting close to the one year mark, and that means we must apply for another one year work visa. Please pray that all goes well and smooth in this process. We must be able to remain in Thailand to do our work here.