Thailand 2023

Nate Twichell will lead an Ascension team visiting Chiang Mai, Thailand, in January 2023. To follow is an article written by him explaining the background of the trip with an invitation to apply.

Travel dates: January 13-22, 2023

Application due: June 30, 2022

Support raising goal: $2000

Apply using this link: https://forms.gle/kcMZAkan767SHwvz9

More information:  natetwichell@hotmail.com

Erika and I first touched down in Chiang Mai in January of 2018. We left behind familiar Pittsburgh, blanketed in snow and ice, and stepped out of the airport into warm air, thick with the unfamiliar sounds of motorbikes and open-air taxis. The next morning, we worshipped with our Thai brothers and sisters at Saint Andrew’s Anglican Church. As the sounds of Thai worship songs filled the chapel, I gripped Erika’s hand and said, “We have to get folks from Ascension here!”

The Kingdom of Thailand is a country of almost 70 million, 95% of the population being Buddhist, with less than 2% of Thais knowing Jesus. Being a Christian in Thailand is not physically dangerous, but it does come at a huge social cost. Christian converts are often ostracized by their families, and much of the country’s holidays and public celebrations are centered around Buddhism. In front of many homes and businesses are spirit houses, small shrines for the spirits of the land, sometimes filled with figurines representing a family for customary ancestor worship. Chiang Mai is also home to more than 200 Buddhist wats, or temples. Thailand is what is considered an unreached nation, and is a country in deep need of the Good News of Jesus Christ. God is moving in the hearts of the Thai people.

Saint Andrew’s was planted by the Anglican Diocese of Singapore almost 8 years ago. In the face of difficult cultural challenges, the church has grown into a vibrant family that shares meals together, encourages each other in discipleship, and shines the light of the Gospel in the surrounding community. Their love for each other and zeal for missions is inspiring. We want you to come with us and see for yourself!

In mid-January 2023, Ascension will be sending a team of up to 8 parishioners to Chiang Mai to support the work of Saint Andrew’s, working in two very different sites. First, we’ll encourage our Thai brothers and sisters in Christ, and read children’s books with the students at the church’s English language preschool and kindergarten. The school serves predominantly middle-class families who desire for their children to learn English, the overwhelming majority of whom have never heard the name of Jesus.  We’ll also take an overnight trip to the rural area of Omkoi. Here, the Anglican Church in Thailand runs a discipleship home for kids from surrounding villages who have to travel to Omkoi to attend high school. The students here are from a long persecuted ethnic minority, the Karen. This area experienced deep poverty, but also a greater acceptance of the Gospel.  

So who should go? This trip is for anyone over 21 who has a desire to see the global Anglican church, a heart for children, and a desire to serve. We’ll enter with the posture of learners, eager to learn how our brothers and sisters minister in this unique context. The trip will require flexibility and adaptability as things usually don’t go according to plan when serving cross culturally. But if you have a desire to see the heart of God in the skin of this amazing culture, this trip is for you. Each participant will be expected to raise their support for the trip, and as part of our preparation, we will be coaching participants in support raising.

Before our departure, we will meet together 8 times, to prepare for support raising, to prepare our hearts and attitudes as learners, to serve together locally, and to spend time with our friends in Chiang Mai virtually in cultural and language prep.

If you feel God’s tug at your heart to come and see what God is doing in Thailand, would you pray about applying? The link for the application is in the announcements, and it can also be found here: https://forms.gle/kcMZAkan767SHwvz9. As much as we wish for everyone to be able to participate in this trip, space will be limited!

Apply using this link: https://forms.gle/kcMZAkan767SHwvz9

Travel dates: January 13-22, 2023

Application due: June 30, 2022

Support raising goal: $2000

More information:  natetwichell@hotmail.com