Visit to Thailand: A Look at the Present and Future of IGo

steering-wheel-on-right-sideMy family and I spent the month of October in Chiang Mai, Thailand. I taught one three week course at the Institute for Global Opportunities. I was impressed with the commitment and dedication of the twelve students currently enrolled in the missionary training program at IGo. Most of these young people are planning to spend a significant period of time in the work of bringing the Gospel to others in cross-cultural settings.

While the missionary training program is the starting point for the Institute for Global Opportunities, it is only the beginning. We are looking forward to have Brother Raymond Burkholder join our staff team in 2008. Raymond will be doing extension teaching in Asian villages and pastors conferences. Through his ministry we will begin providing Bible teaching for Asian students.

I was also pleased to see the work that Kris Schrock is doing in teaching English to Thai university students. In the program she is involved with, several university students have committed their lives to Christ in 2007. Kris is definitely involved in bringing the good news to those she is in contact with. We are planning to expand the English teaching program in the next few months. Katrina Nisly will be staying in Chiang Mai after her first year of study in the Institute. She will be working with Thai churches to provide an English teaching program as an extension ministry of the church.

We are excited to see the possibility of partnering with Thai churches to use English teaching as a way of bringing their Buddhist neighbours into contact with Christian people from the church.

There is also interest in placing missionaries into remote tribal villages where there is a need for teaching and discipleship. We are also planning toward bringing staff over to Chiang Mai to operate a hostel for women attending university in Chiang Mai and perhaps doing some ministry with former prostitutes in the city.

Pray with us as we move into these new ministry ventures. These things represent the second and third aspects of the program we had originally envisioned for the Institute for Global Opportunities. I personally am excited as I see the hand of God leading us step by step toward seeing the church and His kingdom be strengthened and built in Thailand. We as a board are grateful for your support and interest in the work in Thailand.

By Merle Burkholder

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