Isan of Northeast Thailand

Thailand is a deeply Buddhist nation with over 92 percent of its population espousing the Buddhist faith. Missionaries have had very little success at penetrating this massive “spiritual wall.”

AFM has ministered to the Buddhists of Southern Thailand since 2013.

About the People

The Royal Kingdom of Thailand (which means Land of the Free) was founded in 1238 in a declaration of independence from Khmer overlords. Bordered by Laos, Cambodia, Myanmar, and Malaysia, the country also boasts coastlines on the Gulf of Thailand and the Andaman Sea. Thailand exports large quantities of Jasmin rice, silk cloth, silver and silver jewelry, wicker weaving, cabbage, herbs and naturally-dyed cotton. Open-air markets carry plenty of fresh produce at reasonable prices, and vegetarian restaurants abound. Temperatures range between 60 and 100 degrees year-round, and the political climate is peaceful.

Thailand is a deeply Buddhist nation, with over 92 percent of its population espousing the Buddhist faith. Missionaries have had very little success at penetrating this massive “spiritual wall.” Only about 1.6 percent of the Thai population is Christian. There are 37 Seventh-day Adventist churches in Thailand, most of which are in northern Thailand. Hua Hin—the focus of the Southern Thai Project—has no Seventh-day Adventist presence.

About the Project

The primary goal of the AFM missionaries on the Isan Buddhists project is to establish an indigenous church-planting movement among the Isan Buddhists in Thailand. AFM missionaries live closely among the people, learn the Thai language, study local culture and religion, and build deep friendships to reach this goal. Using what they learn, they will craft evangelistic materials for the Thai Buddhist context. Their aim is to share Christianity in a way that leads to conversions that are deeply meaningful and lasting. Local converts will be discipled to become leaders in the first church planted and trained to plant new churches. In this way, the result will be a locally-led newborn Adventist Christian movement that continues expanding God’s kingdom in Thailand.

People-Group Facts

  • Population: 67 million
  • Language: Thai
  • Religion: Buddhism

    Serving this Project

    • Tonya & Jared Wright

      Career Missionaries since 2007.

    Project Update

    Entered area in 2013

    Previously served here

    • Keren Gomez Mora

      Student Missionary for 2017-2020