As this was my first overseas trip it was with mixed feelings I travelled to Thailand (and Burma) in February this year to experience the ministry of The Bible League first hand. There were ten of us in the Bible League Team travelling from Australia.
On this particular day we were to visit the Klang Pi prison in Korat Province, about four hours north of Bangkok, as well as several other detention centres and schools. Our visit to the prison had been organised in advance by a local Pastor who visits regularly to conduct a Bible study course using Bible League material.
On arrival at the prison our bags were searched and we were informed only eight could enter the prison and only one camera was allowed. As I was the only Bible League employee I was pushed to the front of the queue with camera in hand.
Once we had passed through steel doors, passageways and armed guards we entered a picturesque, gardened compound. Approximately fifty male prisoners were seated in an open sided shed eagerly awaiting our arrival. No guards accompanied us and we were free to talk and sing as we pleased. The singing was led by a young Filipino girl who works in The Bible League office in Bangkok and speaks Thai fluently.
With Pastor Prasarn as the interpreter we gave our testimonies to the prisoners and spoke to them about Godís grace and forgiveness. One member of the Team told how God had got his attention by allowing him to live after being shot through the heart and lung by a nail gun. The men were enthralled and many followed along in their own Bibles as Scriptures were read. Several of the men received certificates and Bible League booklets for completing their study assignments.
However when Pastor Prasarn inquired as to how many knew how to pray only three raised their hands. After the Pastor prayed we spoke to the men individually. One prisoner wept as he asked for prayer for his family; he had been saved since coming to this prison and wanted Godís protection for his children as he didnít know where they were. Another asked for wisdom as his wife visited and he told her about Jesus.
What a great blessing to witness God at work in this Thai prison. In a country which is over 90% Buddhist and prays to gods made of stone and plaster, these men had truly found freedom through Jesus Christ.
Source: The Bible League works in over 90 countries around the world. For more information, contact:
Mrs Karen Budin (ph: +61-2-9673 3055 or write to PO Box 464 Penrith NSW 2751)
For more information on Bible studies available, visit the Churchlink site on the World Wide Web at http://www.churchlink.com.au/churchlink. Enquiries to: firstname.lastname@example.org