“Our 7th and 8th graders collected sixteen boxes of clothing, rice, cooking oil and noodle packs for Blessing Ayutthaya Church to distribute,” teacher Freddie Wagner said. “That church flooded a month, near ancient historical sites we visit yearly. Girls in 7th grade Bible study scrubbed cars at coordinator Esther Rudresh’s house. They were humbled at the large cash donations to buy 13 huge 10 kilo rice bags, which Spiritual Director Mike Wood shipped to Bangkok on a bus.”
“I’m thankful GIS helped; it’s always hard knowing exactly how to help. Packing relief bags showed our love and concern for flooded families,” ESD teacher Lindsay Hardin said.
“It was fun to help; I’m glad we did,” junior Evan Miyakawa said.
Our Ayutthaya contact was Khun Aphinya, past assistant to founder Gene Foltz, a key in getting approval to open GIS in 1999. Now in England, she prays for family here and ways to impact Thailand.
“Staff, parents and students gave 50,000 baht ($1,500) to fill 200 relief totes. The Gathering church filled another 100. Chiang Mai Christian Fellowship also donated 50,000 baht; their 75 teens packed 200 more water, toiletry and food bags then prayed for hungry families. OMF Bangkok received the 3,000 pounds of supplies, for local churches to distribute in neighborhoods,” Wood said.
“I’m so thankful GIS is very aware of local needs! Our teens worked hard and were excited to focus on the mission,” teacher Brett Hardin said.
“I like helping other people!” middle-schooler Ethan Wood agreed.
GIS students often serve. Teens sorted and packed supplies, understanding Christianity is more than a heart issue — it’s becoming Christ’s hands and feet! They showed their faith-walk by assisting.
“I only helped move bags, but I was struck that many groups put food together quickly. The cooperation was contagious!” librarian Judy Long said.
“Christ’s body in action is amazing! The media called flooding a “fresh water” tsunami, with 600 lives lost and damage in billions of dollars. Some areas remain submerged a meter. But hundreds of Chiang Mai believers sent supplies, delivered with Thai Gideons’ gifts,” relief helper Dwight Martin said. “Next week Thai churches will organize a national clean-up effort, seeking finances and muscles. To God be the Glory!”