Originally published in Premier Christian News
Christians in Thailand are celebrating after 1 435 people were baptised in a huge outdoor event.
Believers from five different provinces of the country gathered at a reservoir in central Thailand for the ceremony.
Church planting groups Free in Jesus Christ Association (FJCCA) and Reach a Village worked together for the event.
President of Reach a Village, Robert Craft told Premier that although missionaries have been working in Thailand for many years, this is an unprecedented moment in the country’s history.
“Missionary work had been going in Thailand for 200 years and for this to happen and in these kinds of numbers, it is historic. It is the first time there is revival. I think God is doing something very special.”
Thailand’s population is almost entirely Buddhist, with Christians representing a very small minority.
The wave of growth of Christian believers began late in 2016 with the efforts of a local pastor establishing many home churches in different provinces. Today, there are more than 700 home churches across the country, from where many of those baptised originate.
The baptism went ahead despite COVID-19 fears. The southeast Asian nation has been praised for its handling of the coronavirus pandemic, with only 5 confirmed cases at the time of writing and 1 death since June.
“In some countries, COVID-19 has drastically affected the movement of the gospel but in Thailand, it seems that we have been spared,” Craft said.
He encourages people to pray for wisdom for local church leaders, as movements such as these can potentially ruffle feathers politically.
“When news like this hit…political authorities could become upset. We should pray that the Lord would help Thai Christian leaders to handle the movement in such a way that they are wise like serpents, and harmless as doves.”