Displaying items by tag: Thailand
By 9 April authorities were struggling to contain a growing coronavirus outbreak just days before the country's New Year's holiday (April 13 - 15) when millions of people travel around the country. The government response was to close nightlife venues for two weeks. New infections are expected to rise to 10,000 per day if no adequate measures are taken. Some provinces are preventing travellers arriving from elsewhere, The government’s pandemic control is minimal and criticised. The New Year holiday was cancelled last year during the first outbreak. The slow vaccination drive means less than 1% have had their jabs. The government has field hospitals to accommodate any surge in patients, and said vacant rooms in hotels could be converted to accommodate infected people if numbers keep rising.
It is fire season in Thailand, with hundreds of patches of farmland and forest ablaze in the north, belching toxic fumes into the atmosphere and poisoning the air. Tiny pollution particles caused an estimated 32,000 premature deaths in Thailand in 2019, according to a global report. Along with exhaust fumes and crop burning, smoke from the wildfires contributes to the problem. On the worst days this year, drifting smoke made Chiang Mai the most polluted city in the world. As the years go by, the pollution is getting worse. Each year, on average, northern Thailand has been swathed in smoke for eight weeks, causing thousands of health problems. In the first three months of this year 200,000 people in eight provinces have been made ill by toxic particles in the air, according to health officials. ‘Most of the people hospitalised already had chronic diseases,’ said the director-general of the ministry of public health.
Handicap International’s involvement in Thai refugee camps gives children the opportunity to be a cared-for child. Being a child in poverty and stress is particularly challenging if you are disabled. Since 1984, Thailand has sheltered people fleeing Myanmar’s violence in camps along the border. Some refugees were born in the camps and have never set foot outside. Most are Karen, a mixed people group without a shared language or religion. Since the 1940s, ongoing conflicts between Karen separatists and the Burmese army have forced many to flee. 400,000 Karen people are homeless. Camp conditions are extremely poor; in the past cholera and malaria have occurred. Children suffer from chronic malnutrition and respiratory infections. There is no electricity, phone signal, healthcare, or education.
IJM Thailand was informed by the Myanmar embassy of a potential human trafficking and forced labour case. 18 Myanmar workers needed rescuing from a confectionery factory in Bangkok. They were illegally brought in and wanted to leave, but could not. IJM personnel, embassy staff, and other agencies went to a residential neighborhood and attempted to call out to the workers locked in the upper floors of a building behind locked gates. Eventually, one worker began to climb out over the gate and a ladder was brought to help him escape. 17 other migrant workers followed him to freedom. They will undergo Covid testing and continue to receive IJM legal and aftercare support in a safe location. Pray for the successful prosecution of their captors and traffickers.
Conditions are ripe for another military takeover in Thailand. There have been 13 coups since the 20th century began. Today, any conflict between pro-democracy demonstrators and monarchy supporters could give the military an excuse to take control. Led by students, ongoing pro-democracy protests have been largely peaceful. Demonstrators want the current prime minister to resign, and they are calling for constitutional reform. Protestors appealed to Chancellor Angela Merkel yesterday after marching to the German embassy in Bangkok. Supporters of the Thai kingdom criticised this youthful movement saying, ‘Without a monarchy, there would be a civil war’. A lot of people trying to stand up for their lives and rights have others opposing them, leading to outbreaks of violence which are destroying society but also presenting a unique Gospel opportunity. The local church intends to be an agent of peace. Pray for Thai believers to stand out as peacemakers, drawing many to Christ.
Thailand was the second nation to report coronavirus cases, but now has effectively contained it with countrywide lockdown and continued precautions, now celebrating 100 days without a Covid case. Now a church-planting movement celebrates another milestone that wouldn’t be possible without word of mouth conversations, house gatherings, and in-person testimonies. The Free in Jesus Christ Church Association, a Thai-led movement which focuses on village-level evangelism, held the largest baptism in its history. They baptised 1,435 people in one day; twenty ministers lined up across a waist-deep reservoir waiting for new believers to come one-by-one from the shore to proclaim their faith and be submerged for the sacrament. Bob Craft of Reach a Village ministry said, ‘We believe it is the merciful hand of God to allow the gospel to spread at this crucial time.’
Imagine being on a ship and discovering you had been sold as a slave, not sure if you will ever see your family again. There is a form of human trafficking taking place in the middle of the ocean. Thousands are forced to work in Thailand’s seven-billion-dollar fishing industry, many against their will. They are lured by the promise of a good job, then sold to boat captains who force them to do dangerous work while their families are left to wonder whether they will ever return. Ron was a Cambodian father, husband and family man in dire poverty, barely making $2 a day on his farmland. He was running out of options to feed his family. When someone came to his village, offering better options. Ron took the bait. Too late, he realised he had been sold to a ruthless boat captain in the Thai fishing industry. It is time to bring the fishermen home.
2020 a year of evangelism across the UK
Global Gathering of networks engaged in church planting - Thailand - 3-8 February. (Invite only)
5 Days of Prayer for the Khawlan Tribe - 14-18th Feb
Seek God for the City Feb 26–Apr 5, 2020
The World Prayer Centre, Birmingham, UK, National Conference 9-11 March
Watchmen Gathering - Seoul, South Korea, 25th-28th March
North East Asia Prayer Summit, Seoul, South Korea, April 7-9, 2020
Go 2020 – Reaching 1 Billion for Christ - May 2020
4th Caribbean Prayer Summit, Montego Bay, 21st-24th May,
10 days Spring - May 21- 31
One God - One Day - One Africa – 31st May 2020
The Graham tour 2020. 9 cities celebrating Billy Graham crusades across the UK
17th SEA PRAYER Council in Hanoi, Vietnam - 6-9 October
National Prayer Assembly (USA), Washington, D.C., October 14-15
UPRising Events Calendar
UPRISING EUROPE (Battle, UK) – July 6-10, 2020
FB: Uprising Europe
UPRISING AUSTRALIA (Sydney, Australia) -- July 14-18, 2020
FB: UPRising Australia
UPRISING NEW ENGLAND (New England, USA)-- Nov 19-21, 2020
FB: United Prayer Rising - New England
- UPRISING MINDANAO (Mindanao, Philippines)-- dates TBA
- UPRISING BUKIDNON (Northern Mindanao)
- UPRISING CARAGA (Butuan, Bislig, and Surigao)
- UPRISING DIGOS (Davao Del Sur)
- UPRISING CENTRAL MINDANAO (South Cotabato, Cotabato, Sultan Kudarat, Sarangani, and General Santos)
FB: United Prayer Rising Mindanao
FB: United Prayer Rising North Mindanao
On this day a national referendum to ratify Cuba's new constitution will take place; the government says that gay marriage protections will be removed from the draft, but this is still being argued by politicians. Moldova’s elections are under a new mixed electoral system which people do not trust. Pray for peaceful electioneering and outcomes in both these situations. Since the military coup in Thailand, a new political party, the youthful Future Forward Party, has emerged (see). Critics say the constitution dilutes the power of elected governments and embeds the role of the military role in politics and policy for the next twenty years. Activists have been calling on the government not to postpone the election again, amid fears that it might do so.
Praise God for the initiative of the Asi people in forming the ‘Asi Bible Association,’ to oversee New Testament distribution. Pray for good decisions and the finances needed to distribute the Scriptures in written, audio and digital formats, including the Jesus film, DVDs, CDs, and hymn books. Pray that people of the Philippines will be eager to engage with the Scriptures available to them. Praise God also for the hundreds of followers of the Northern Thai Facebook group formed when the New Testament was dedicated in early 2018. Pray for the scripture engagement team as they put out an updated version of the phone app. There will be a meeting of churches in September to encourage support for translation of the Old Testament. Ask God to bring many to the meeting, and that funds will be found to pay the salary for a scripture engagement coordinator for another year.