Christmas in Thailand
Posted by danneker on December 1st, 2019 | Leave a comment
How do we spend Christmas Day in Thailand? As my children will tell you, rarely at home opening presents, that’s for sure. December 25 is not a holiday here, since Thailand is a Buddhist country, with over 90 % adhering to that religion. Christians still number less than one percent of the population. The Thai people are fascinated by Christmas. The stores have taken on all the decorations (Santa Claus, reindeer, trees, etc.) … anything for a sale. Many Thai people think Christmas is the foreigner’s “New Year’s” since they see it has something to do with exchanging presents, which many Thai do at New Year’s (Jan 1). Praise God, Thailand has freedom of religion. So usually on Christmas Day we go into a local school and do a Christmas program where we tell the children the real meaning of Christmas.
This year we will do the Christmas Day outreach at the local high school. Manao, one of our teenagers at the church who is now two years old in the Lord, is in eleventh grade at this school. Out of 850 students, she knows of only one other student who may be a Christian. Manao, who is always inviting friends to church, really wanted us to share the Gospel with the entire school. Praise God, the school gave us permission for an hour and a half program on December 25. After games, songs, and a short skit that illustrates how Jesus deals with the problem of sin, Ajarn Sittichai will share the Gospel with the students. We will then give each student a small gift which will include literature that further explains the Good News. Please pray for open hearts. Pray that the program goes well with no “technical difficulties”. Pray for fruit that will last.
Prior to “Christmas Day”, our church will have a Christmas program on Sunday, December 22, where our members are being encouraged to bring family and friends with them. Many people are willing to go into a church for a Christmas celebration, perhaps because the programs are usually lots of fun, small gifts are often given out and there is a nice meal afterwards. But praise God, we have seen people come to faith at the Christmas outreaches too (like Manao). Pray that that will be the case this year.
Saturday, December 14, we will have an outreach for the children and youth in the area, assisted by the youth from our mother church. Then our youth will join the mother church’s youth for a community outreach near the home of one of the young people on Saturday Dec. 21.
Our personal “family” Christmas is a quiet affair. We pick a day when all the activities of church are over with. We sleep in, have a special breakfast, read the Christmas story from Luke, and exchange presents. Our daughter will be with us this year.
Thank you for your prayers for this Christmas season. May many Thai come to saving faith.