LHMT Director Joins In-Service Workshop for Christian Workers

From September 8-12, 2014, the Lutheran Hour Ministries Thailand (LHMT) director had an opportunity to  participate in a workshop to help Christian workers improve their English proficiency.  The LHMT director and other Christian workers often need to use English for communicating with individuals and organizations outside Thailand.  In those situations their common language usually is English.  Doing many of their ministry responsibilities in English, instead of their first language, can be a challenge.

In addition to studying English this workshop also was a good chance for the director to build closer relationships with many Lutheran church workers.  It was interesting and helpful to learn more about them and their ministries and to share ideas about spreading the Gospel of Jesus in countries that have a very small percentage of Christians.

A total of 18 workers from Vietnam, Cambodia, Myanmar and Thailand attended the workshop, which was made possible through funding from the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod (LCMS) and Lutheran Heritage Foundation.  Two retired LCMS teachers from Michigan and the LCMS missionary in Thailand served as teachers for the workshop.

Everyone is hoping that there will be more in-service training opportunities in the future.

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Exercise is Good Medicine

JIL TeamFor several weeks the Lutheran Hour Ministries Thailand (LHMT) director and staff have been getting together at the end of each work day and exercising in their meeting room.  With the help of an exercise video, the LHMT team is having a good time dancing and moving to the music for about 30 minutes each day.

With the changing weather during the rainy season and the many ministry trips that the LHMT team is making, it’s not easy for them to find time to exercise.  Because several of them have been getting colds and experiencing other health problems, the director decided to make exercising a priority.  Although the team is quite crowded in the meeting room, there is no place for them to exercise outside.

In addition to improving their physical health, exercising together has also become a good team building activity and a positive way to end the day.

Please pray that God will give the LHMT team good health and lots of energy to accomplish all the ministry activities that they have planned in the coming months.

Many Hands Make Light Work

In addition to their regular ministry responsibilities, the Lutheran Hour Ministries Thailand (LHMT) director and staff have been working together to clean their ministry center and to inventory and organize all of their ministry materials and equipment.

When they had some extra time in their workdays, they each did whatever they could to update the list of materials produced by LHMT, rearrange storage cabinets and shelves to make better use of the limited space that they have in the ministry center and to check the condition of the building, especially the walls that they share with the neighbors on both sides.

Not only were they able to make more efficient use of the storage space, but working together also served as a fun time of team building.

Quarterly Newsletter Provides Ministry Updates

16980The Lutheran Hour Ministries Thailand (LHMT) staff are very busy preparing and distributing the JIL News to local Thai churches and LHMT partners in ministry.  JIL is short for Journey Into Light, which is the local English name for LHMT.

This quarterly newsletter provides updates about LHMT ministry programs and activities, articles from the LHMT radio speakers and stories about how God is changing the lives of listeners in Thailand, LHMT ministry results and the program for sending encouraging Gospel text messages to the mobile phones of thousands of Thai people each week.

Also included in the newsletter is information about the many great books, Bibles, pamphlets, brochures and other Christian materials and products available through the LHMT Christian bookstore on the first floor of our ministry center.

1912317_10202627592964147_1800081290_nThrough the newsletter the readers are informed about how they can participate in the JIL Club.  The JIL Club makes it possible for people to send prayer requests to the LHMT ministry center, so the LHMT director and staff can pray for them during their daily devotion times.

JIL News has proven to be a good way for LHMT to keep in touch with people throughout Thailand, who have connections with LHMT and interest in our ministry activities.  We know that many of our friends use the information in this newsletter as they pray for us and to make contact with us when we have an activity scheduled in their area.

We thank God for the thousands of people who read JIL News.  Maintaining close relationships with them is important to us.

End of Fiscal Year 2013-14 Audit

From July 7-10, 2014 three auditors reviewed the Lutheran Hour Ministries Thailand (LHMT) financial accounts.  Each year a thorough audit is done to ensure there are no irregularities or mistakes with the LHMT accounting process.  It’s very important for us to be sure that the funds provided by our donors are used properly.

We thank God for blessing us throughout the past year.  We appreciate all the work of the Lutheran Hour Ministries headquarters in providing the funding needed to support our ministry center staff and ministry programs as we continue to bring the light of Jesus Christ to the Thai people living in darkness.

Annual Asia and Europe Regional Workshop in Latvia (Continued)

Workshop in Latvia17After the devotion Thursday morning Mr. Kurt led a session on the overall strategy of Lutheran Hour Ministries.  This was a great opportunity for the country directors to hear directly from the Lutheran Hour Ministries Executive Director and to be able to ask him questions.  We really appreciate the fact that Mr. Kurt was willing to come so far to meet with us.

The topic of the second morning session and the afternoon sessions was “Social media – you & me, having a conversation.”  Social media is becoming a very important part of the way LHM ministry centers around the world do outreach in their countries.

The main workshop activities ended Thursday afternoon.  In the evening from 6:00 pm-9:00 pm everyone joined the opening of a movie forum, “And the Word Became Film…”

Friday was a free day for all the country directors to do some touring around Riga and shopping.  It was nice to have some time to relax and to enjoy the beautiful scenery and cool weather.  Saturday evening we all said goodbye to each other at the wonderful grill party, because many people left Latvia early Saturday morning.

The LHM Thailand director left Latvia just after noon and arrived safely in Bangkok Sunday morning.  Although there were many meetings and a long distance to travel, everyone learned a lot, received good encouragement and enjoyed seeing each other again.

We thank God for the people who planned this workshop, especially Mr. Artis Purins, Latvia country director, and his staff.  We also want to thank the people who led the sessions and daily devotions.  We thank God that everyone had safe travel to their homes.

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Annual Asia and Europe Regional Workshop in Latvia (A)

Workshop in Latvia06On April 17, 2014 the Lutheran Hour Ministries Thailand (LHMT) director traveled to Riga, Latvia to attend the Asia and Europe Regional Workshop.

Seven country directors from Asia, 3 from Europe, plus the country directors from Jamaica and Germany are attending the workshop.  Asia Regional Director, Mrs. Gunya Na Thalang, and Europe Regional Director, Rev. Peter Kirby, are also involved.

The LHM Thailand director enjoyed the Good Friday worship at St. Gertrude Old Church and had some time to rest from the trip.

Workshop in Latvia41Workshop in Latvia39The workshop began Saturday morning with devotions and a session about the overall strategy of Lutheran Hour Ministries presented by Dr. Douglas Rutt. The afternoon session was led by Mrs. Deborah Rutt and focused on different fundraising strategies.  This session was especially important, because fundraising is a big challenge for every country director.

All of the directors had a special experience Saturday night.  From 11:00 pm until 2:00 am Sunday they attended the Easter night worship service at St. Gertrude Old Church.  For most of the Asia directors, participating in a traditional Western worship in a large church building was a unique opportunity.

Because the directors went to sleep so late Saturday night, nothing was scheduled for Sunday morning.  Sunday afternoon everyone enjoyed a trip to the Open Air Museum.  The day ended with an Easter praise service at the church.

The sessions on Monday mainly focused on fundraising and the use of media.

Tuesday’s schedule was very different from the other days.  In the morning everyone visited the Lutheran Hour Ministries Latvia ministry center to learn about their work in detail.

Workshop in Latvia35In the afternoon Mr. Kurt Buchholz, Executive Director of Lutheran Hour Ministries, arrived from the Lutheran Hour Ministries headquarters in St. Louis.  As the new Executive Director, this was Mr. Kurt’s first visit to Latvia and the first time that he was able to meet some of the country directors.

In the evening a Vacation Bible School program was planned for about 50 children.  Six stations were prepared with 2 country directors serving each station.  The first station provided an opportunity for the children to make some simple crafts from Korea and Germany.  The second station was a puppet show from Myanmar and Thailand.  At the third station the children played some traditional games from Vietnam and Cambodia.  Traditional songs from India and Sri Lanka were the focus of the fourth station.  At the fifth station the children learned some simple traditional dances from Indonesia and Jamaica.  The country directors from Russia and Kazakhstan served snacks from all of the countries at the sixth station.

Wednesday morning we started the day with devotions, that were led by Mr. Kurt.  The topic of the 4 sessions on Wednesday was “He crucified, me crucified.”

Although the weather is quite cold in Latvia, with overnight temperatures dropping to near freezing some nights, all of the country directors are happy to have time together to renew their relationships, to participate in the sessions with some of the staff from the St. Louis headquarters and to experience and learn about the culture and daily life in Latvia.

We thank God that everyone had safe travel to Latvia and that we can share and learn from each other during this workshop.

 

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