Thailand is a country known for many things. Often referred to as “The Land of Smiles,” the nation boasts of its well-renowned beaches and lush jungles, its well-preserved cultural traditions and its many ethnic hill tribe groups, its highly revered royal family, and its delightful cuisine!

We have come to know Thailand as a place where we are able to share the love of our Lord and Savior. In a country where more than 95 percent of the population holds to Buddhism, our WELS missions are working alongside nationals to share the law and gospel message found in the Bible. The work is centered in three regions of northern Thailand and includes sixteen mission fields.

It is said that the heart of a church body is its seminary. What future leaders of the church learn at the seminary will be implemented and taught to the people they serve. So it is vital that seminary students in Thailand receive the highest standard of biblical instruction. The course of instruction follows a path similar to that offered in the U.S. by the Pastoral Studies Institute (PSI). This program is designed for students from cross cultural venues. In addition to doctrinal studies, students study Greek and Hebrew to enable them to refer to the biblical texts. Practical courses in sermon preparation and delivery are also emphasized.

Hmong missions in Chiang Rai, Lao missionary Tom Chaleunsouk in northeast Thailand, and the Thai pastor who leads the work based in Chiang Mai all work closely together. Thai Village, Inc. (vocational opportunities) and Christians Forward Southeast Asia (humanitarian aid) are two Lutheran Christian-based organizations (not funded by WELS) also working among the hill tribes of Thailand. Learn more about WELS mission history in Thailand.

Fast Facts

  • Baptized nationals: 1,100
  • National pastors: 16
  • National evangelists: 4
  • Preaching stations: 13
  • Congregations: 6

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Praying for Thailand

Pray for the Lord’s continued guidance and protection of our national pastors, our seminary instructors, and our seminary students as they serve the Lord’s church. Pray for our congregations that are bringing the Gospel to their communities where the Christian religion is all but unknown. Pray also for the eventual development of a national Thai church body that will someday be able to stand on its own financially and govern itself as an independent church in fellowship with WELS.


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Browse through and share pictures of Thailand taken by WELS missionaries and national workers.