The Northern Thai region of Lanna—which means a “million rice fields”—is known for its unique culture and ancient traditions. Although six to seven million people speak this northern dialect, fewer than one per cent are Christian.
The Northern Thai people gained access to the New Testament in 2018. Although the language is spoken widely and the alphabet developed nearly 700 years ago, most Northern Thai were never taught to read or write in Lanna. Written Lanna has historically been reserved mostly for monks in local temples. This has proven to be a significant barrier to engagement with the translated Scriptures.
To help overcome this challenge, Bible translators printed the New Testament using two scripts side by side, Northern Thai and Standard Thai, the language of wider communication. This approach helps locals understand the Northern Thai Scriptures better. More concerted efforts are needed to equip the language group to interact with God’s Word. In collaboration with the Wycliffe Thai Foundation, the Northern Thai Literacy and Scripture Engagement (SE) project is focused on promoting the use of the translated New Testament, and affirming the Northern Thai language and culture. The team’s long-range vision includes translation of the Old Testament, through well-trained local translators.
YOUR PARTNERSHIP IS KEY
By supporting this literacy and Scripture engagement initiative, you’ll help Northern Thai speakers discover the power of God’s Word in the language of their heart. Your involvement will also resource the team as they establish a literacy internship program, carry out literacy classes, and preserve their language for generations to come.
Your involvement can help make these project goals a reality:
- Wycliffe Thai Foundation literacy interns will develop skills, vision and experience to reach Northern Thai people.
- National Thai Christians can learn about the importance of the translated Scriptures.
- As Northern Thai people encounter more translated reading materials in their language, their use of the language will increase.
As more Scripture-based content is translated and distributed among Northern Thai people, they will grow in their understanding of God and His gift of salvation through Jesus Christ.
Pray for the Northern Thai Lanna literacy classes that are planned for June—for preparations needed and a good response from the community.
- Visit the projects periodically to monitor its progress, address challenges, and help ensure good stewardship of resources
- Send you regular updates to keep you informed about progress, financial need, and prayer requests
- Send you an annual tax receipt for your donations