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Thai pastors, church leaders attend Methodism course

Six Lahus baptised by Bishop Dr Solomon during training

TWENTY-FIVE pastors, church leaders and workers from our five Methodist churches in Thailand have completed a three-day “Introduction to Methodism” training course.

The Thai, Lahu and Karen Christians from the Methodist churches in Rangsit, Sanphranet, Santi, Genesis and Maekhapu attended the course at the Wangtarn Resort, a 20-minute drive from Chiangmai. It was conducted by Bishop Dr Robert Solomon from Oct 15 to 17, 2002.

Pastor Ca-Suh of Santi Methodist Church testified that he now understood at least 80 per cent of Methodism which would help him better serve his Lahu people.

A volunteer and lay travelling preacher from the Church of Christ in Thailand, Mr Prasert Pornkiratiku, who provided support to our Methodist Mission in Thailand since 1995, was the interpreter for the Bishop. He was challenged to consider serving with the Methodist Church.

Village chief among those who accept the Lord

The six Lahus who were baptised. With them are Bishop Dr Solomon (left), Pastor Ca-Suh (next to him), and the Rev Dr Clarence Lim (extreme right). The Santi Village Chief, Mr Pakare, is third from left. –
Methodist Missions Society picture.

The highlight of the training programme was the baptism of six Lahus from Santi Village by Bishop Dr Solomon on Oct 16. Among those baptised was the Santi Village Chief, Mr Pakare. I gave the meditation at the baptism service, which was led by Mr Pisut Kongsukthara.

After five years of ministry since the Santi Methodist Church was planted with the support of Kampong Kapor Methodist Church in 1998, only four families remained to be baptised.

The morning devotions for the trainees on Oct 16 and 17 were given by me and Bishop Dr Solomon respectively. Many participants were challenged by the Bishop’s devotion when they stood to make a commitment to love the Lord. A Thai pastor with the Korean Methodist Mission found the training useful when he joined the trainees for two days.

A remarkable initiative of the 25 trainees was to pray for a new Thai believer from Rangsit Methodist Church who is in the final stage of cancer. They spontaneously collected among themselves a love offering for this young believer.

On Oct 19, in Rangsit, Bishop Dr Solomon baptised her in the presence of a few church leaders and members from the Boys’ Brigade and the Girls’ Brigade of Rangsit Methodist Church.

The Rev Dr Clarence Lim is the Director of the Methodist Missions Society of The Methodist Church in Singapore.