January 7, 2015

Thailand Bangkok Mission

Free resources about the Thailand Bangkok Mission:

Thailand Bangkok Mission Address

Here’s a recent address for the Bangkok Mission. We try to keep this info up to date, but it’s a good idea to check the address with several sources, including your mission packet or the mission office.

Thailand Bangkok Mission
1645/6 New Phetchburi Road
Makkasan, Ratchathewi
Bangkok 10400
Thailand

Phone Number: 66-2-652-7717
Mission President: President David M. Senior

Thailand Bangkok Mission Map

Here’s a link to the mission map for the Thailand Bangkok Mission (LDS). To access the official, up-to-date LDS.org map for the Bangkok Mission:

  1. Log into your LDS account here.
  2. Click here.

Videos with Thailand RMs

Here are in-depth YouTube video interviews with returned missionaries from the Bangkok Mission.  We interview hundreds of returned missionaries each year, so check back regularly to see new RM interviews.

mission interview  mission interview  mission interview  mission interview  mission interview

LDS-Friendly Videos about Thailand

Here are LDS-friendly educational videos about Thailand. We scoured YouTube to find the best quality videos about Thailand, that are free from inappropriate music, immodesty and profanity.

LDS Church  places  history  food  nature  language  Major Cities  time lapses  nature

Thailand Bangkok Missionary Blogs

Here’s a list of LDS missionary blogs for the Bangkok Mission. This list includes the missionary’s name, URL and when their blog was updated.

*Send your missionary a gift (mission-specific shirts, ties, Christmas stockings/ornaments, pillowcases, etc.)

Elder Collin Decker eldercollindecker.blogspot.com 2017
Elder John Higginson johnkimball.blogspot.com 2017
Elder Christian Miyagi eldermiyagi.blogspot.com 2017
Elder Porter Rawlinson elderporterrawlinson.blogspot.com 2017
Sister Carolyn Hammon sistercarolynhammon.blogspot.com 2017
Elder Gabriel Santeco eldersanteco.blogspot.com 2017
Elder Kameron Ho Ching missionsite.net/elderkameronhoching 2017
Elder Abraham Smith-Driggs elderabrahamsmith-driggs.blogspot.com 2017
Sister Minhee Kwak gehmlichgirls.blogspot.com 2017
Elder Logan Ellis elderellisinthailand.blogspot.com 2017
Mission Alumni mission.net/thailand/bangkok 2016
President & Sister Johnson johnsonsinthailand.blogspot.com 2016
Elder Reed Haslam lds-thailand.org 2016
Sister Bethany Coates sistersawatdee.blogspot.com 2016
Elder Joseph Latimer elderjoelatimer.blogspot.com 2016
Elder Keller Brown elderkellerbrown.blogspot.com 2016
Sister Ellen Watters sisterwatters.wixsite.com/thailand-bangkok 2016
Sister Auburn Remington sisterauburnremington.blogspot.com 2016
Elder Robert Thompson elderrobertcadethompson.blogspot.com 2016
Elder Jesse Bundy elderjessebundy.blogspot.com 2016
Sister Sarah Morgan sistersarahmorgan.blogspot.com 2016
Sister Katie Burbank sisterkatieburbank.blogspot.com 2016
Elder Keyen Neal elderkeyenneal.blogspot.com 2016
Sister Maisie Carrillo sistermaisiecarrillo.blogspot.com 2016
Elder Davis Ridings elderridings.wordpress.com 2016
Elder Joseph Chanthakhoun chanthakhounonamission.weebly.com 2016
Elder Elliot Mayo elliotmayo.com 2016
Sister Tessa Herrmann tessainthailand.blogspot.com 2015
Elder Conor Mitchell eldermitchell.weebly.com 2015
Sister Alley nikkimomalley.wix.com/tongue-thai-ed 2015
Elder & Sister Moleff moleffinbangkokthailand.blogspot.com 2015
Elder Lindsey Takeuchi elderlindseytakeuchi.blogspot.com 2015
Sister Brecklyn Nethercott thaidupfor18months.blogspot.com 2015
Elder Samuel Chamberlin eldersamchamberlin.blogspot.com 2016
Sister Terri Zoller terriinthailand.blogspot.com 2015
Elder Mark Wager eldermarkwager.blogspot.com 2015
Elder Josh Keller elderjoshkeller.blogspot.com 2015
Elder & Sister Meeker meekersinthailand.blogspot.com 2015
Elder Christopher Osborn elderchristopherosborn.blogspot.com 2015
Elder Aaron Proctor elderaaronproctor.blogspot.com 2015
Elder Kendall Vance missionsite.net/ElderKendallVance 2015
Sister Emily Steele sisteremilysteele.blogspot.com 2014
Sister Abbie Slaugh smilingsisterslaugh.blogspot.com 2014
Sister Morgan Carter sistermorgancarter.blogspot.com 2014
Sister Mckenna Barber sisterbarberinthailand.weebly.com 2014
Sister Sydney Hughes sistersydneyhughes.blogspot.com 2014
Elder Braxton Johnson facebook.com/ElderBraxtonJohnson 2014
Sister Brooke Embley missionsite.net/sisterbrookeembley 2014
Elder Brandon Savage missionsite.net/elderbrandonsavage 2014
Elder Jackson Harley jacksoninthailand.wordpress.com 2014
Elder & Sister Soward thesowardsinthailand.blogspot.com 2014
Sister Elizabeth Stevenson sisterlizstevenson.blogspot.com 2014
Sister Monica Painter sistermonicapainter.blogspot.com 2014
Elder John Slaughter elderslaughter.tumblr.com 2014
Elder Cameron Segura missionsite.net/eldercameronsegura 2013
Elder Joshua Zitting elderzitting.blogspot.com 2013
Sister Summer Crockett missionsite.net/sistersummercrockett 2013
Sister Traci Yeo sistertraciyeo.blogspot.com 2013
Elder Bryan Todd budtodd.blogspot.com 2013
Elder Landon Simonsen elderlandonsimonsen.blogspot.com 2013
Elder Dillon Haughton tigersinthailand.wordpress.com 2013
Elder Robert Buss lettersfromr.blogspot.com 2013
Elder Garrett Harris missionsite.net/eldergarrettharris 2013
Elder Ethan Bennett missionsite.net/elderethanbennett 2013
Elder David Stott missionsite.net/davidhyrumstott 2012
Elder Narongrit Williams missionsite.net/eldernarongritwilamas 2012
Sister Jennifer Knutson jennknutson.blogspot.com 2012
Elder & Sister Seangsuwan elderandsisterseangsuwan.blogspot.com 2012
Sister Breanne Roper smilinginthelandofsmiles.blogspot.com 2012
Sister Stacie Chambers missionsite.net/sisterstaciechambers 2011
Elder Brandon Holt elderholtinthailand.blogspot.com 2011
Elder Daniel Brown elderdanielbrown.blogspot.com 2011
Sister Emily Henderson emilysmission.blogspot.com 2011
Elder Jacob Newman eldernewmanthailand.blogspot.com 2011
Sister Katrina Amero katrinaamerosmission.blogspot.com 2011
Sister Sara Webb sistersarawebb.blogspot.com 2011
Sister Stacie Chambers heart2heartspirit2spirit.blogspot.com 2011
Elder Tyrel Parkinson tyrelparkinson.blogspot.com 2011
Elder William Schulte wcschultemissionspot.blogspot.com 2010

Thailand Bangkok Mission Groups

Here are Bangkok Mission Groups- for LDS missionary moms, returned missionaries, mission presidents and other alumni of the Bangkok Mission.

  1. Thailand Bangkok Mission Alumni Group (709 members)
  2. Thailand Bangkok Mission 2000-2003 Group (245 members)
  3. 2014 Thailand Bangkok Mission Reunion Group (165 members)
  4. Thailand Bangkok Mission Reunion 2014 Group (96 members)
  5. Bangkok Mission 1997-00 President Goodman Group (81 members)
  6. Bangkok Mission 1991-94 President White Group (79 members)
  7. Thailand Bangkok Mission Alumni Group (17 members)

Thailand Bangkok Mission T-Shirts

Here are T-shirts for the Thailand Bangkok Mission!

Shirt designs include Bangkok Mission logo/emblem shirts and Called to Serve shirts. The shirts make great gifts for pre-missionaries, returned missionaries and missionaries currently serving. LDS Mission shirts come in all sizes: Small, Medium, Large, Extra Large, up to 4XL.  The mission designs are printed on white shirts and are shipped to you.

*Simply click on a shirt design to view the details and submit an order. The designs on mission t-shirts may also be printed on other LDS mission gifts, including: Bangkok missionary aprons, Christmas stockings, ties, pillow cases, teddy bears and Christmas ornaments.

*Click here to browse Bangkok Mission gifts

thailand-bangkok-lds-mission-shirt-1 thailand-bangkok-mission-t-shirt-2 thailand-bangkok-lds-mission-shirt-3 thailand-bangkok-mission-t-shirt-4 thailand-bangkok-mission-t-shirt-5 thailand-bangkok-mission-t-shirt-6

Thailand Bangkok Mission Presidents

Here’s a list of current and past Mission Presidents of the Bangkok Mission.

  1. 2015-2018, Kelly R. Johnson
  2. 2012-2015, David M. Senior
  3. 2009-2012, Michael S. Smith
  4. 2006-2009, Karl L. Dodge (Listen to an interview with the Dodges)
  5. 2003-2006, Scott Frederick Hansen
  6. 2000-2003, Martin R. Slater
  7. 1997-2000, Michael Allen Goodman
  8. 1994-1997, Troy L. Corriveau
  9. 1991-1994, Larry R. White
  10. 1988-1991, Anan Eldredge
  11. 1985-1988, Floyd Barg Weed
  12. 1982-1985, Floyd Hogan
  13. 1979-1982, Clyde T. Lowe
  14. 1976-1979, Harvey D. Brown
  15. 1973-1976, Paul Morris
  16. 1971-1973, Miller F. Shurtleff
  17. 1969-1971, G. Carlos Smith
  18. 1968-1969, W. Brent Hardy
  19. 1968-1968, Keith E. Garner

Thailand LDS Statistics (2015)

  • Church Membership: 19,665
  • Missions: 1
  • Temples: 1 announced
  • Congregations: 38
  • Family History Centers: 7

Helpful Articles about Thailand

Coming soon..

Thailand Bangkok Missionary Survey

Here are survey responses from Bangkok RMs, to give you a snapshot into what it’s like to live in the mission.

When did you serve?

  • 2012-2015 (Pace)
  • 2012-2014 (Erik)
  • 1982-1984 (Jay)
  • 2003-2005 (Sokunthea)
  • 2010-2011 (Emily)
  • 2008-2010 (Brianna)
  • 1999-2000 (Jennilyn)
  • 2012-2014 (Nathaniel)
  • 2003-2005 (Joe)
  • 2006-2007 (Emily)
  • 2004-2006 (Paul)
  • 2008 (Saraj)
  • 2006-2008 (Tim)
  • 2004-2006 (Weston)
  • 1998-2000 (Justin)
  • 2012-2014 (Nathan)
  • 2012-2014 (Alex)
  • 1999-2001 (Michael)
  • 2014-2015 (Terri)
  • 2008-2010 (Hayden)
  • 2003-2005 (Lewis)
  • 2003-2005 (Jay)
  • 2006-2008 (Bryan)
  • 2006-2008 (Brenden)
  • 2007-2009 (Andrew)
  • 1989-1990 (Lee)
  • 1983-1985 (Paul)
  • 1982-1984 (Susan)
  • 1982-1983 (Leron)
  • 1981-1982 (Ron)
  • 1980-1982 (Patchara)
  • 1973 – 1975 (Fred)

In which areas did you serve?

  • Chaingmai, Korat, Yasothorn, Bangkhen, Samutprakarn, Ayutaya, Buriram, Pakkret, DonMueng, Chaengwattana. (Pace)
  • Kalasin, Pakkret, Don Muang. (Weston)
  • Surin, Bangkapi, Ubon, Pakret, Roi Et. (Justin)
  • Rangsit, Thonburi, Sisaket, Mahasarakham, Udorn Thani. (Alex)
  • Sakornakorn, Din Dang, Saphan May, Asok, Phitsanulok, Mahasarakham, Khon Kaen, Thonburi. (Michael)
  • Kalasin, Pakkret (Bangkok). (Terri)
  • Ubon, Samut Prakaan, Bangkok. (Hayden)
  • Samui Prakkan, Bangken, Kumpawabi, Khon Kan, Lopburi, Rangsit. (Bryan)
  • Ubon, Nongkhai, Khon Kaen, Bangkok. (Brenden)
  • Ayuthaya, Surin, Roi-et, Sagolnakorn, Asoke, Thonburi. (Andrew)
  • Bangkok, Lampang, Lopburi, Chaing, Mai. (Lee)
  • Bangkok, Khon Kaen, Phitsanulog. (Paul)
  • Chiang Rai, Udorn, Phanat Nikorn (refugee camp). (Susan)
  • Lop Buri my 1st month, then Bangkok and Bangkok suburbs for the rest of my mission. (Leron)
  • Samsen (BKK), Lampang, Phayathai (BKK), Asoke (BKK), Bangkapi (BKK). (Ron)
  • Bangkok, Ubol @ Mhasarakam. (Patchara)

What were some favorite foods?

  • Khao Man Gai (Fried Chicken, Chicken Broth Rice), Som Tam (Papaya Salad), Bhumi (a noodle soup with pork and wontons). (Pace)
  • Sour and spicy shrimp soup (tom yum kung). Barbecued pig neck. Pongaree curry on rice. Masuman curry. Sweet cashew chicken on rice. Spicy noodles with seafood (pad ki mao ta’le). Fried banana flower. (Erik)
  • Satay, phat thai, nam tok, drunken noodles. (Jay)
  • Nam tok, som tum. (Sokunthea)
  • Cashew chicken, Phad Thai, fried garlic chicken, fried rice, coconut ice cream, and all the fresh fruit and smoothies! (Emily)
  • Khao soy (ข้าวซอย) , nam tog (น้ำตก) (Brianna)
  • Naam tok , som tum, khaay cio, fried rice, sticky rice. (Jennilyn)
  • Somdam Nam doke Cashew chicken (Nathaniel)
  • Som tam, nam tok, larb, muu bing, khaw man kai, muu tod kratiam, sticky rice with mango and khaw lam. (Joe)
  • Beef Waterfall, Mango and Sticky Rice, Fresh Fruit Smoothies, Papaya Salad. (Emily)
  • ส้มตำ (spicy papaya salad) ไก่ย่าง (grilled chicken) นำ้ตก (pork salad) ข้าวเหนียว (sticky rice) หมูปิ้ง (grilled pork on a stick) ข้าวเหนียวมะม่วง (mango sticky rice) นำ้ปั่น (smoothies). (Paul)
  • Som tum, name thog, pad briea wan, pad Pak roam med. (Saraj)
  • Curries, Laab, Waterfall Pork/Beef, Pork neck, three flavor fish. (Tim)
  • Namtok, Mu Ping, Mangoes, Pineapple. (Weston)
  • Som Tum, Nam Tog, Laab, Geng Paneng, Genk Kiaw Wan, kaaw pad, kaaw man Kay. (Justin)
  • Anything at all on the streets. It’s all so stinkin’ good. (Nathan)
  • Kaaw soy, som tam, nam tok, Phad krapaw, phad phak ruam. (Alex)
  • Khaw man kay thood, nam dok. (Michael)
  • Khai Jiaw — Eggs over rice is probably the best comfort food of all time. All the street food was pretty great, too. (Terri)
  • Literally almost everything. (Hayden)
  • Muu Bing. Naam tok. Som tam. Mangos and sticky rice. (Lewis)
  • Namtok (waterfall). Stick rice. Somtam. Muu bing. Kay jiao. (Bryan)
  • Nam Tok, Laab, Phad Thai, Plaa Pow, all Thai food basically. (Brenden)
  • Fried pork, garlic, fried rice, pad thai, kai yad sai, Nam tog w/sticky rice, som tam. (Andrew)
  • Somtum, Phat Thai. (Lee)
  • Pad-se-yu, Pad-Thai, Bad-me-nam. (Paul)
  • SomDum, larb, massuman, green curry, pad thai, mango sticky rice. (Susan)
  • Naam Tok. (Leron)
  • Khaw niaw, mamuang khaw, phad, phad thai, khaw soi, phad si yiw, khay ciaw. (Ron)
  • Thai of course! (Patchara)
  • Fruit. Pork Fried Rice. (Fred)

What was a funny experience?

  • Most funny things happen between companions and districts, we have a lot of fun because we bond and can relate to each others’ situations. A specific instance is when we had a baptizing contest in district meeting, where we dunked out “investigators” (wadded up paper balls) into a bucket of water. (Pace)
  • I sprayed ant-killer into a hole in the wall in the kitchen because ants were always crawling in and out of it. I walked out for about a minute, and when I came back, the entire wall was covered will gigantic, dying ants evacuating their nest (including some of the REALLY big ones with wings). I panicked and started spraying the entire wall with the ant-killer, and thousands of ants started tumbling onto the counter, into the sink and into the dish rack. When my Laotian companion came into the room, he cried out, “What happened?!” in a very thick, high-pitched accent. It was one of the few things he knew how to say. (Erik)
  • I really enjoyed telling the school kids that I don’t speak Thai, in Thai. (Jay)
  • Falling of my bike so many times. (Sokunthea)
  • My companion and I were riding around the rice fields when we came across an older gentlemen. He started talking to us about how he is a member that doesn’t go to church anymore. He mentioned Cherry over and over. We thought he was referring to one of the sister missionaries that served in the area awhile ago. Suddenly he said, “Oh, I know why you are here! You want to see Cherry, don’t you?” Extremely puzzled my companion and I followed him around the cashew trees to find his water buffalo named Cherry. He absolutely insisted we ride Cherry, his pride and joy. It was actually pretty fun. We laughed about it the whole way home! (Emily)
  • One of the members fell in love with me and asked me to marry him when I came home. His reason for wanting to marry me is because he liked the way I did the dishes and his reason I needed to marry him is because he was born on Christmas Day. Needless to say I didn’t marry him, but when I did get married he congratulated me and said he would always be waiting. Ha ha. 🙂 (Jennilyn)
  • Well it happened often, but many Thai and Burmese people would ask, “why are you so tall?” And I would jokingly tell them that I always ate bread and milk for breakfast. The next time you would see that person they would tell you about how much bread and milk they’d been consuming to get taller haha (Nathaniel)
  • My companion and I were riding our bikes home from an appointment to drop off our bikes before our next appointment. About half way there we got caught in a downpour and didn’t have enough time to change clothes before we had to jump in a taxi to the next appointment. We were soaked to the bone the whole ride and during the appointment too. Weather changes at the drop of a hat. Word of advice, always carry a poncho and a plastic bag to put your messenger bag in for those flash floods. 🙂 (Emily)
  • Riding the huge buses with backs cut open. It felt like surfing. Expect sadly once I fell on a pregnant woman. (Saraj)
  • I made marshmallows for New Years Eve because I couldn’t find them. We had a bbq fire and let the members try s’mores. One kid loved them and had melted marshmallow all over his face. (Tim)
  • Trying to stay awake in lessons as a new missionary. (Weston)
  • Mispronunciation of words stating “place my pig on your head” instead of “place my hands on your head” during a blessing. Asking my first companion where the toilet paper was after entering the restroom for the first time. Many others. (Justin)
  • I convinced a drunk man to dance and sing a happy birthday song with me and my companion to send home to a family member… he was extremely drunk. We invited him to church and he came the next day! (Nathan)
  • I had a flag made to put on the back of my bike that said, “get baptized for free.” The first night I put the flag on my bike someone asked me what baptism was and we had the opportunity to teach her. (Alex)
  • First day in my first area, didn’t know how to ride a bike, totally crashed in a TESCO parking lot. (Terri)
  • Watching Thai people exercise. (Hayden)
  • My greeny went to the bathroom in his pants when getting used to the food. Never knew when you’d get hit with the need to be in a bathroom immediately. (Lewis)
  • As a nong kiaw, fell in a klong (sewer ditch). Lost all my front pocket goodies like eggasaans and my brand new name tag. It was dark out already (hence why I didn’t see the klong) so we called it a day and went home. (Bryan)
  • The pen that my mother gave me for my mission was stolen by a monkey in Lopburi (he climbed onto my shoulders and stole it from my shirt pocket). The monkey climbed up a tree and I watched as he ate the pen. Not funny at the time, funny to me now. (Paul)
  • We were teaching a lady in her yard, sitting under a tree. In the middle of the lesson…splat…monkey excrement all over my face and hair. (Susan)
  • Our maid who flipped bottle caps at us with dangerous accuracy and velocity! (Leron)
  • Water fight make up! (Patchara)

What was a crazy/dangerous experience?

  • Songkran, the annual national water fight is quite crazy! Absolutely vital part of Thai culture though. (Pace)
  • Riding my bike in Bangkok. We decided to stick to public transportation after about a week. Riding my bike through rural Thailand. We were ambushed and nearly bitten by angry dogs several times. (Erik)
  • Riding on the outside of a bus for several miles while hanging on with one hand. (Jay)
  • Nearly got hit by a car while riding my bike across the road. (Sokunthea)
  • It was a rainy night. We wanted to make one last stop before returning home. We were waiting at the stoplight on our bikes to turn right (it’s like making a left hand turn since they drive on the left side of the road). All the cars came to a stop and the green light signaled us to go. As my companion started pedaling forward into the intersection, I noticed a motorcycle weaving his way through the traffic at a fast speed. He wasn’t slowing down and was heading straight for my companion. I wanted to tell her to stop but the rain was so thick and motorcycle too fast. He t-boned right into her. He went flying over her and his motorcycle flew to the curb. My companion was left standing there like nothing had happened. She said the spirit told her to put her feet on the ground at that moment when he hit her. She only got a small bruise from it. The man was a bit worse for wear but he limped away before we could talk to him. It truly was a miracle! (Emily)
  • We went to a little market that had a tin roof. There was a big storm and one of the power lines next to the little market we were in exploded. There was a huge fire and I could feel the heat from it in my face. Later that afternoon some of the Thai peopled thought we had died. They couldn’t believe we had survived the blast. We were protected. (Jennilyn)
  • A taxi ride in Myanmar. The guy was driving over 90 mph, swerving in and out of oncoming traffic and driving on the dirt side of the road. My companion and I honestly felt like we were in A James Bond movie. At the same time I felt like we were going to crash and die. (Nathaniel)
  • We got struck by lightning riding our bikes on the way home during a thunderstorm. We weren’t directly struck but it hit a pole near us. We all definitely felt it. (Joe)
  • Night time getting home was tricky we didn’t want taxi drivers to know where two single white girls lived so we would have to plan to bike home from the church or walk sometimes. (Saraj)
  • Senior companion hit a parked car in the trunk on a narrow street and flew through the back window. Another time my other senior companion got side swiped by a car coming out of parking lot while on his bike. (Tim)
  • Riding bikes pretty much anywhere. (Weston)
  • Riding a bicycle anytime in Bangkok. (Justin)
  • There was a flood in Sisaket and while we were helping members move their belongings to dry land there was a poisonous centipede sleeping in a helmet inches above the water we were wading through. (Alex)
  • Weaving in Bangkok traffic, my companion was hit by a green bus and then pushed along the ground under the tire for about 10 feet. (Michael)
  • Every time we got into a car, or a van, or on our bikes…Everything you do is crazy, you just get used to it. (Terri)
  • Companion hit by a truck. (Hayden)
  • They have sprayers for clean up instead of toilet paper. Usually. Sometimes just a bucket of maybe clean water. (Lewis)
  • I didn’t understand how nuts it must have been for us to ride our bikes full speed right to Bangkok traffic. When I trained for the first time, my nong kiaw was quick to let me know how crazy that was. He was riding along side me dodging in between cars the very next week. Also, in Gumpawabi, we once found a water buffalo with the longest horns you ever saw. Called him Super Khwai. Companion, who was also Branch President at the time, really wanted to ride him before he transferred. One fateful preparation day, I was the distraction bait while he sneaked up from behind. Him mounted on top that beast was one of the most majestic things I’ve ever seen. To this day, I don’t how or why that thing didn’t gore either of us. (Bryan)
  • Having the military point a .50 caliber machine gun at me and ask me why my companion and I were on the military base and how we got on base. (Lee)
  • Holding onto the back of trucks while riding our bikes. Every missionary did it. My broken front teeth (capped since the time) are a regular reminder to me that holding onto the back of a truck while riding your bike is a BAD IDEA. Don’t do it, unless you really want to taste the road and potentially break your teeth and more. The difficulty with refusing to do it was that my senior companion then disappeared over the horizon leaving me to peddle to catch up and find him. (Paul)
  • During the monsoon season we had no electricity, so we were studying scriptures in our home by candlelight. I noticed a large snake slithering on the floor toward us so I grabbed a broom to smack it. When I whooshed the broom to hit the snake, the flame of the candles extinguished, leaving us in pitch darkness, barefoot, with a snake in the room. Running and screaming ensued. (Susan)
  • An airline executive was assassinated outside our home. He was a foreigner like us with blonde hair, and white shirt and tie, so for awhile, we wondered if we were being targeted. (Leron)
  • We were at the Ancient City on preparation day, when we saw a cobra and cat staring each other down in the tall grass. We didn’t get a good picture, so my companion was beating the grass with a stick to try to get the snake to come out where we could see him for a picture. (Ron)
  • Trying to eat a tookae sandwich! (Patchara)
  • While riding my bike, I met a bus on a one lane bridge. (Fred)

What was a spiritual experience?

  • The moment in which you realize that the spirit is talking through you straight to the real concerns of an investigator. The gift of discernment is a very spiritual opportunity to express God’s love and answers for His children. (Pace)
  • On a whim, I invited an investigator to a Family Home Evening at a member’s house. At first she wasn’t interested in meeting with us to learn more, but as the evening progressed, she opened up more and more, until she agreed to meet with us again. When it was over, she came up to me and said, “Elder, I have never felt so much love in a family before.” She was baptized a few weeks later. (Erik)
  • Asking “when” an older couple was going to get baptized and the soon-to-be brother took that as the right challenge needed. (Jay)
  • Receiving guidance for meetings new investigators. (Sokunthea)
  • Thai people are predominately Buddhist. Being able to teach people that there is a loving Heavenly Father who yearns to connect with them through prayer and then teaching those people how to pray is an extremely beautiful experience. Listening to that first prayer would bring me to tears. (Brianna)
  • The prophet President Hinckley visited Thailand in June of 2000. It was the first time the prophet had ever visited Thailand. Naturally all the members were so excited! All the members traveled to Bangkok for the special day. All the members and converts were there from all of my areas. I thought that the celestial kingdom might be similar to the experience of seeing so many people I loved together. It made me so happy to see those I taught were still strong in the gospel. (Jennilyn)
  • I played a part in helping a family be baptized and then later they went less active for a period of time. I continued to write them about every three months throughout the duration of my mission and worried about them everyday. Then at the tail end of my mission I was at transfer meeting and I was given a letter that the mother addressed to me. She said that her family had now been back to church for about four months and her son, who I baptized, was going to receive the Aaronic Priesthood soon. She thanked me for my letters and said that they helped her gain the motivation needed to return to activity. (Nathaniel)
  • Answering questions in Thai through the gift of tongues when I didn’t fully understand the question or how to respond. Teaching things I didn’t know until I taught them by the Spirit. (Paul)
  • Seeing members truly welcome members and see them be successful. (Saraj)
  • Going to the Hindu temples. (Tim)
  • Hearing a companion get T-boned on his bicycle by a motorcycle and not having a scratch on him while the front of the motorcycle was wrecked. (Justin)
  • In my second to last area, a family consisting of parents, a grandmother, and two daughters were baptized. Having a whole family enter the church was so wonderful that I set a goal to help one more family enter the waters of baptism before I finished my mission. The week before I came home a family was baptized, which also happened to be the day of my birthday. What an awesome birthday present from the Lord! (Alex)
  • Watching President Hinckley prophecy of a temple to be built in Thailand and having that prophecy begin to come forth in a recent conference. (Michael)
  • While we were teaching a Laotian family in Bangkok, they showed us a Christian hymn book in Laotian (The Church hasn’t published an official Laotian hymnal yet) and we found the song “How Great Thou Art” and sung it together. (Terri)
  • Watching an entire family go to the temple after I got home was probably the best experience of my mission even though it happened after. (Hayden)
  • Met several people in my first area who felt the Spirit very quickly and wished to be baptized. Eventually, all of them lost interest and it was very sad. But for those few who you do find and watch them go through the conversion process, it’s just the most wonderful thing in the world. (Bryan)
  • When I finally realized that the wonderful people of Thailand don’t need a “watered down” version of the gospel. That the restoration through Joseph Smith and the Book of Mormon are the greatest tools in helping develop faith that the Lord has given us. (Andrew)
  • Seeing the sister I baptized for the sister missionaries my first week in country climb onto a bus as a sister missionary my last week in country. (Lee)
  • Every day for two years. (Paul)
  • Riding on a crowded bus in Bangkok, looking out the window at crowded streets of beautiful Thai people, most of whom had no knowledge of the Savior. Feeling overwhelmed with the love Heavenly Father had for all of His children, despite their earthly beliefs, upbringing, ethnicity, etc. He knew each of those people in the crowd as individuals and cared for each of their lives and daily concerns as much as He cared for mine. (Susan)
  • Bringing a family into the gospel. (Leron)
  • We were teaching the family of a returned sister missionary, but they weren’t excited to have us there, would hardly participate in the lessons, pray or anything else they needed to do to progress toward baptism, but we kept going and working with them and praying for them. On Christmas Eve, we received a phone call from this sister, that her mom and sister finally wanted to be baptized! We were so shocked, then overcome with gratitude, that they would finally accept the Gospel. They were baptized the following month. (Ron)
  • When I talked about how God’s love saves us at the end. (Patchara)
  • Being asked to perform a baptism. (Fred)

What are some interesting facts about the Bangkok Mission?

  • The people are very friendly and the dogs usually are not. (Pace)
  • The mission exploded after what the mission referred to as “Bovember,” Baptism November, 2013. By completely changing our approach to inviting and teaching, the mission went from an average of 30 baptisms a month (which means only 30 baptisms in the whole country), to over 100, then 200, then 300 a month. The mission’s vision was to build stakes and prepare Thailand for a temple. The Thailand, Bangkok Temple was announced the April Conference after I got back. (Erik)
  • It cost around $40 to ride the bus each month. (Jay)
  • There are many returned missionaries, who came back as a mission president. (Sokunthea)
  • You see elephants walk down the street. The Thai people put tail lights on their tails so the cars won’t hit them. (Jennilyn)
  • Last time I checked the Thailand Bangkok mission had the greatest ratio of people per missionary in the world. About 200,000 people per missionary. It also covers three different countries, Thailand, loas, and Myanmar. Anyone could be called to serve in those countries. Also Thailand will have a temple in the next few years, it will be the only temple in Southeast Asia besides the Philippines. (Nathaniel)
  • Don’t drink water so 7 eleven is your friend and moo ice cream bars. (Saraj)
  • There used to be a mission band. While I was serving the first missionaries from Laos were called to serve. There are more opportunities to ride elephants than you will probably ever experience again. (Tim)
  • It also includes Burma and Laos. (Weston)
  • Had about 110-120 missionaries at a time. Had a Mission President who was young (mid-30’s). (Justin)
  • Our mission actually covers three countries: Myanmar, Laos, and Thailand. Almost all of the missionaries serve in Thailand though. (Alex)
  • I served in 8 places, moving around almost every other month until my last area. (Michael)
  • There was a temple recently announced (April 2015). There used to be an official mission band that toured around Thailand. Some of the older members and even old investigators still have some of their music. (Terri)
  • Beautiful country, tasty food, amazing people. (Hayden)
  • First missionary to Thailand was sent by Brigham Young in the 1800s. He quit and went home early because the language was too difficult to learn. Not a very encouraging story for a young missionary to hear let me tell you. (Bryan)
  • Thailand is about 95% Buddhist, 4% Muslim, and 1% EVERYTHING else. (Brenden)
  • Thailand, while not the largest producer of rice, is actually a large exporter of rice. Also, there is a lot of rice. (Andrew)
  • The King of Thailand was born in Mt. Auburn Hospital in Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA. He is a magnificent man who has lead the Thai nation with brilliance, insight and compassion. (Paul)
  • At the time, the ratio of sister missionaries to Elders was higher than the average mission because most of us were called as “welfare missionaries”. Many of us served in a refugee camp during our mission. Most of the sisters had college degrees already. (Susan)
  • The mission is celebrating our 50th anniversary this year. (Leron)
  • The average number of baptisms was two per missionary. We had only one chapel in the entire mission, no wards or stakes. The nearest temple at the time was Tokyo, Japan. One member of our District Presidency was Elder Wisit Khanakham. We decided that he would definitely be the first Thai native called to be a General Authority. (Ron)
  • How God wants me to share His love to His children! (Patchara)

What’s the weather like?

  • Hot, humid, rainy. Beautiful, every day was a blessing despite the heat and rain. (Pace)
  • Hot almost all the time. Painfully hot around April. Rainy during the middle of the year (flooding is common). (Erik)
  • They have three seasons: hot, hotter, and *&# hot. (Jay)
  • Just three…hot, very hot and scorching hot. (Sokunthea)
  • Rainy and hot. There was a time when it was cold. It was 70 degrees. We thought we were dying because usually it is in the 90’s. The only time you need a light sweater is when it drops into the 70’s or when you are at church. They crank the AC in a lot of the buildings. (Emily)
  • Hot and humid, unrivaled sunsets and sunrises, flooding during rainy season (Brianna)
  • HOT and humid! Tons of rain during the rainy season. Walked and ride my bike through streets of water that came to my knees. (Jennilyn)
  • Extremely hot and wet all year. I only served in one area where it was relatively cool in the cool season. Half the year it’s extremely hot and then it’s extremely rainy. I mean rain everyday for hours each day. (Nathaniel)
  • Hot and humid. Very similar to the American South. I grew up in Alabama so the weather was familiar to me. The rainy season saw lots of showers usually in the afternoon. (Joe)
  • Hot, hot and humid, and rainy. Farther north at the highest peak it can get as cold as 50 in the middle of the cold season. (Paul)
  • Perfect. In the north it rains in December and I actually bought a medium weight jacket to combat the cold (I am also skinny). (Tim)
  • Hot and then rainy (but still hot). (Weston)
  • Hot and wet. (Justin)
  • Hot, Humid, Rainy. (Alex)
  • Hot and muggy. Stepping off the plane in Japan was like finally breathing again coming home. (Michael)
  • Hot, humid, sunny. When it rains, it pours. There’s a rainy season when everything floods and you’ll see the most beautiful thunderstorms. (Terri)
  • Hot and humid most of the time. (Hayden)
  • Hot. And really hot. (Lewis)
  • Hot year round! Muggy, humid hot too. Worst time was in April but thankfully Songkran provided some relief. There’s a monsoon season and a cold season too. Cold only lasts two weeks in November I think. It really only gets cold up north in Chiang Mai or Chiang Rai. Frost on the grass when you wake up but still warm by mid-day. (Bryan)
  • Hot and hotter. Intermingled with wet and wetter. (Brenden)
  • Hot, humid and rainy. (Andrew)
  • Mostly hot and humid. Very tropical. (Lee)
  • Hot, hot and hot with occasional rain. During the monsoon season it rains in sheets. (Paul)
  • Haha. Really? Hot and dry or hot and wet. In the north, slightly cooler. (Susan)
  • HOT AND HUMID!! (Leron)
  • Very hot and sticky, especially compared to my home in Idaho. (Ron)
  • Hot and hotter. (Patchara)
  • Hot, hot, and hot. (Fred)

Any things you really like about the area/people?

  • Their culture was interesting. The location is pristine. The members are absolute angels and first generation pioneers. (Pace)
  • Very simple, childlike, fun-loving people. They love white people. Thai wards and branches are much more close-knit than Utah ones (even though activity is very low). (Erik)
  • The food is awesome. The people are friendly. (Jay)
  • Food and kindness. (Sokunthea)
  • The people of Thailand are so nice! Even if they don’t care about your message they will invite you in to have some fruit or a cold glass of water. We were highly respected for our service. It’s part of Buddhism to do as much good as you can so that you can outweigh the bad. Having anything to do with us is viewed as doing good. (Emily)
  • They are so nice! Even if they’re not interested in your message, they’ll give you fruit from their trees as they turn down your message. (Brianna)
  • Thai people are very kind and generous. They will always give you food even if they don’t have a lot. I loved how happy they were even though they didn’t have a lot of material things. (Jennilyn)
  • The people are extremely humble and giving, even though they have little to give. The people are also very genuine. They’re also very respectful and considerate. People cooked us food all the time and were there for us when we were sick. (Nathaniel)
  • Most all the Thai people were very friendly and helpful. The food was excellent and the culture fascinating. (Joe)
  • The Thai people are so generous. They will give you something/everything they have to eat or drink, even if the can’t afford it. (Emily)
  • Nice, friendly, loving people. Great food. Amazing places to visit. (Paul)
  • Everyone’s smile. Loved the unified country and seeing them support there king wearing yellow on Mondays. (Saraj)
  • They are the most wonderful people you will meet. Strangers offered to buy us Pepsi on hot days many times. (Tim)
  • I love Thailand like a second home. (Weston)
  • So accepting and loving. Would literally give you the shirt off their back (had someone offer his shirt to me). (Justin)
  • Generally speaking, everyone was so kind. Rejection was easier to overcome because of the kindness of Thai people. The members I served with were funny, helpful, and had strong testimonies of the Gospel. I learned so much from their examples. (Alex)
  • The generosity and cheerfulness of everyone. (Michael)
  • They were so genuine and real. (Terri)
  • The level of kindness cannot be described. (Hayden)
  • Always happy and smiling. Hardly ever met anyone who was out right mean to you. Something I know state-side missionaries would appreciate. (Bryan)
  • Very open and kind. Always willing to stop and chat, or invite you to eat with them. (Brenden)
  • They are the sweetest, kindest people in the world. They will (and have) give the shirt off their back to you if you ask for it. (Andrew)
  • The people were humble and would listen to your message. (Lee)
  • Their warmth, kindness, honesty, and open hearts of the Thai people. (Paul)
  • Thailand is a country of great physical beauty with it’s beaches, mountains, rice fields, and foliage. The people are friendly, kind, curious, hospitable. (Susan)
  • The Thai people are the warmest, friendliest people I have had the privilege of meeting. (Leron)
  • They people were sooooo good to us. They loved that we could speak Thai, and even if not interested in our message, were easy to talk to. They were so generous when we went to their homes too. You could never go without them giving you something to drink, and many times something to eat too, though they weren’t very wealthy. And of course the food was amazing. Eating on the street was the best. (Ron)
  • Beautiful with lot of smiles! (Patchara)
  • I loved the country and the people. (Fred)

Any packing/clothing advice?

  • Buy waterproof slip on shoes for Elders, a lot of the clothing can be bought over in Thailand. (Pace)
  • WATER-PROOF SHOES. You will end up throwing away or leaving behind most of your clothes. (Erik)
  • Read the letter from your mission president. (Jay)
  • I over-packed big time! In Thailand you can find most things you are accustomed to as well as the brands. You can find herbal-essences hair products, Vaseline products, opti-free contact solution, always feminine hygiene pads (same pads just named Whisper instead of Always), and you can even find Dimatap cold medicine. For sisters I would only bother stocking up on a few things: deodorant, tampons, and a high SPF sunscreen. Everything else you can get in Thailand. Bangkok is an international city so it has products from all over the world. One huge thing I would suggest is croc shoes for sisters. The Croc company makes a Mary Jane kind of shoe. You want a shoe that will handle a lot of water, like walking through flood water everyday, and is easy to slip on and off. I wore one pair of those Mary Jane crocs and it lasted my whole mission. They also are available to buy in Thailand too just not the Croc brand. (Emily)
  • Avoid layers. It’s hot! You might be riding a bicycle, so skirts need to accommodate for riding a bike but not getting stuck in the wheels (tricky!). Also, you’ll be sitting on the floor a lot. Skirts/dresses need to be the appropriate length. (Brianna)
  • Cotton–Things that are light and breathable. Shoes that you can take off easily. (Jennilyn)
  • Bring extra white shirts and don’t open them until you’re half way through your mission. I brought a total of 10 and used 5 for the first half of my mission and then 5 for the last half. Also buy shoes that can get extremely wet and not fall to pieces. (Nathaniel)
  • Most any clothing can be bought in Thailand. Shoes and clothing in larger sizes can be difficult to find. Although, shirts pants and suits can be readily made in Bangkok. (Joe)
  • A good poncho that buttons on the sides. If down the middle, you will get soaked. A light jacket for the cold season. A waterproof bag to hold your scriptures and other proselytizing material. (Paul)
  • Tall sisters the “Walmart” there has tops that will work. Bring all the shoes you will need. Wonderful seamstress there to make suits, any fashion pic you bring to them they can make. I saw.some sisters have temple dresses made there what a wonderful memory to have. Tons of cheap jewelry there! (Saraj)
  • Shoes will most likely have to wade through floods at some point in your mission. Do you really need the most expensive ones knowing they will get drenched from downpours? (Tim)
  • Only take things that you know you’ll wear. (Weston)
  • Slip on shoes or easy to get in and out. No rain gear – doesn’t help and you are soaked from the humidity anyway. Washable pants and ties. Cotton pants not wool. (Justin)
  • Don’t buy the stupid passport holder that is in the call letter. (Alex)
  • Don’t use bleach to clean your clothes, it will only speed up the yellowing process. (Michael)
  • Shoes that you can walk through water in! And clothes that can get soaked and not be ruined/see-through haha. (Terri)
  • My advice: don’t bring half the stuff on the list. You can buy it there for cheaper. (Hayden)
  • I’d have wanted a good water proof jacket. (Lewis)
  • Sweat – wicking pants and socks. Extra pair of shoes because the wet season will ruin your first pair. (Bryan)
  • Pack light. Bring just the necessities. Custom, professional clothing can be purchased in country for much cheaper than in the United States. (Andrew)
  • Light, quick-drying clothes. (Lee)
  • Lightweight fabrics, but durable. Nothing heavy. (Paul)
  • Comfortable shoes that can handle getting wet. Mix and match skirts and blouses. (Susan)
  • White short-sleeve shirts, light fabric slacks. (Leron)
  • Take better shoes than you think you will need. They wear our very quickly. Two pairs and keep them dry and clean, so they will last. You can get clothing there cheap, but I didn’t like the fit of the dress shirts. I never had to wear my suit coat, so I sent it home and had a new one made to take home. (Ron)
  • Fold clothes in buns! And bring mosquito repellent! (Patchara)
  • Take as few clothes as possible and buy what you need in Thailand. (Fred)

What blessings did you receive from serving a mission?

  • It brought me closer to my family and helped me to be more understanding and open to the fact that the gospel is not necessarily the path for every individual during mortality. (Pace)
  • A large group of life-long friends. A love of the scriptures. A real testimony and a desire to stay active in the church my whole life. (Erik)
  • The language. (Jay)
  • Understand life and tribulations of having a family. (Sokunthea)
  • I think the blessings are still coming my way from serving a mission. The biggest blessing is joy. Since getting back from my mission I’ve become Facebook friends with members and friends from Thailand. There seriously is no greater joy to see pictures on Facebook of people staying true to the gospel, going on their own missions, getting married in the temple, and having families of their own. To be part of helping them get there is the sweetest and truest joys in the world. (Emily)
  • Too many to count! Aside from the many friends I made, my testimony was strengthened in a very real manner. (Brianna)
  • A stronger testimony/conversion, some of the happiest moments of my life, an appreciation for all the material things I have been blessed with. (Jennilyn)
  • A number of them. I was able to gain an unbreakable testimony of Jesus Christ and our Heavenly Father and how much they do for us. I was also able to adapt to a new culture and learn new things from new people. I received a witness of the power of the priesthood and the power of the Holy Ghost. I could go on and on but there is a sample of the blessings I received. (Nathaniel)
  • I attribute my ability to endure difficult circumstances to my mission. I struggled with the language for the first couple of months. I had to rely on my Heavenly Father to help me learn and grow. That experience has helped me through difficult times in my life since then. (Joe)
  • Greater faith and testimony. Everything I have today. (Paul)
  • Learned the kind of mother I wanted to be and it is second nature to.me to teach those around me of Christ. (Saraj)
  • I served my mission only being in the church 1.5 years. It strengthened my testimony more than words can describe. It was nice seeing not everyone comes from a perfect Mormon family, and many could relate to my non-Church experiences. (Tim)
  • All the blessings I’ve received in my life, I attribute to my service as a missionary. (Weston)
  • Beautiful wife ;). A love of serving, strengthened testimony, understanding of hard work, appreciation of blessings of a loving family and of living in a first world country, joy of the Atonement, too many to name. (Justin)
  • I developed a relationship with my grandmother, who is Thai, and we are close friends now whereas before I hardly ever heard from her. (Alex)
  • I gained confidence and my family back home was well taken care of. (Michael)
  • Among the many blessings I received from serving a mission, I appreciate the increased understanding I gained of my Heavenly Father’s love for His children and a strengthened personal relationship with Him that came through many of my struggles as a missionary. (Terri)
  • Lifetime friendships and strength from learning the gospel and serving the Lord. (Hayden)
  • A more mature perspective of life in general. There’s a lot of material things Thai people go without because they just can’t afford it. Makes you grateful for what you do have. And definitely an appreciation for the gospel in your life. It’s so very hard, more people to accept it and allow the blessing to flow. (Bryan)
  • A strengthened testimony of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, The Boom of Mormon, and Joseph Smith. A greater desire to search deeper and deeper into the mysteries of God. Everything good that has happened in my life post-mission. (Andrew)
  • Better gospel knowledge, a stronger testimony, a love for Thailand and it’s people. An opportunity later to adopt three children. (Lee)
  • My mission radically changed the trajectory of my life for the better. (Paul)
  • My mission taught me to rely on the Spirit to inspire and guide my words and actions. It taught me obedience. I learned to love more deeply. I learned the value of each of God’s children. It set me on a path of service that continues to this day. I learned to value experiences over material possessions. I also learned how to endure day to day discomforts and challenges. (Susan)
  • Lifetime friends. (Leron)
  • My testimony grew and was strengthened immensely, from serving, studying and testifying. My commitment to the Gospel and desire to serve was cemented. I made lifelong friends and experienced a totally different culture than I could ever imagine. I developed a deep love for the Thai people, eventually returning and marrying a wonderful young woman (8 years). (Ron)
  • God’s love is real! It taught me to love others unconditionally! (Patchara)
  • To many to count. (Fred)

What are some skills you gained?

  • I learned how to hand wash clothes, fix bicycles, keep things dry, pack quickly and efficiently, keep positive outlooks and perspectives. Handle stress. (Pace)
  • Speaking Thai. Not being at all afraid of germs. Riding my bike with no handle-bars. (Erik)
  • Thai. (Jay)
  • Understanding others and their weakness. (Sokunthea)
  • Obviously learning how to speak, read, and write Thai. I also learned leadership skills, finance skills, and how to teach or speak at a moments notice. I also learned how to follow and trust the spirit. (Emily)
  • I overcame any fear that I had to talk to strangers. When I came home, I was prepared to speak with anyone at my job. (Brianna)
  • Speaking Thai, got really good at riding a bike and squatting ;). Eating new food, learning to read another language, learning a new culture, learning how to get a long better with others, learning to rely on my Heavenly Father. (Jennilyn)
  • I’m now trilingual. If that makes sense. I learned to speak Thai and Burmese on my mission. I also learned leadership and planning skills. I learned how to build the church up in an area that never had had the gospel before. I also learned how to be a genuine friend to those around me. I learned how to communicate effectively and easily to anyone. (Nathaniel)
  • Time management, communication skills, and patience. (Joe)
  • Learned multiple languages, patience, leadership, teaching, faith, trust in God. (Paul)
  • Communication with companions. Mission presidents care about individuals but you have to open up and let them get to know you. (Saraj)
  • Perseverance, optimism, and self confidence. (Tim)
  • Ability to sing in Thai. (Weston)
  • Working with others, understanding how differences in others is a benefit, an ability to work through hard situations, language skills, understanding other cultures, knowing how to work hard, many others. (Justin)
  • I learned how to speak Thai, converse with strangers, work hard, love people I didn’t even know, overcome stress, and so many other skills. (Alex)
  • Listening to the spirit and discerning spiritual intent. (Michael)
  • Leadership, management, negotiating, teaching. And those are just the temporal skills. (Terri)
  • The ability to introduce new concepts and teach. The ability to trust my instincts. The ability to treat others with respect and smile. (Hayden)
  • Language skills, bike – riding skills, bowstaff skills….Leadership qualities too of course. (Bryan)
  • I learned how to speak, read, and write Thai. I can cook delicious Thai food. Plan and organize. (Andrew)
  • Talking to people. Learning another language. Learning that my way of doing things is not the only right way to do things. (Lee)
  • Confidence. Work ethic. Open mind. Open heart. Powerful learning/study skills. (Paul)
  • Thai language, bargaining skills. (Leron)
  • Learned a language that I had barely heard of before, and have been able to use it to help others in the temple, etc. Overcame much of my natural shyness. Was able to learn to love and serve and get along with others in challenging circumstances. Learned to drive a manual transmission car, on the wrong side of the rode, in Bangkok traffic, without an accident or causing a traffic jam. (Ron)
  • Learned the English language and how to get along with companions! (Patchara)
  • Learn Thai better. (Fred)

What do you wish you knew/did at the beginning of your mission?

  • It’s very important to be obedient to both the mission rules and the Spirit. Never conform to what other people want you to be, be the best missionary that YOU can be, be yourself, YOU were called to this mission, YOU are the unique instrument with all of your flaws that will touch the hearts of the people you serve. (Pace)
  • I wish I would have been devoted to diligent study from day one. (Erik)
  • How to work hard. (Jay)
  • Be more prepared. (Sokunthea)
  • At the beginning I was super stressed out. I was trying to learn the language, figure out what was going on all the time, and trying to not get run over by cars. I would say to stop worrying about all of it. Focus on spiritual aspects and all the temporal things will fall into place. If you are stressed out and worried about the details you will miss what the spirit is trying to tell you. Be happy and trust that the Lord is in control. He will not abandon you and will always give you what you need. (Emily)
  • I always heard missions were wonderful. I never heard the bad. I learned real quick that there are really hard, frustrating, emotional days. Also–it’s ok if you don’t understand a word. You probably won’t. (Jennilyn)
  • I wish I knew the alphabet of the language I was going to be speaking. I had 4 months between the time I got my call and actually left, I wish I would have used some of that time to prepare better. I also wish I knew each of the priesthood blessings by heart. Because they are so important! (Nathaniel)
  • Be patient with myself learning the language. (Paul)
  • That the language would come. (Saraj)
  • I wish I knew about the power of the Priesthood. (Tim)
  • I wish I had tried more foods. (Weston)
  • Prepare better by reading scriptures more. (Justin)
  • I wish I would have talked to every single person who came into my sight. (Alex)
  • Try new foods daily. Be kind, even when others are not, be they companions, members, investigators, or uninterested people. (Michael)
  • It doesn’t matter how many people you teach, how many miles you walk, or how hard you work as long as you’re doing your best. It’s God’s work, and He knows exactly what He’s doing even when we don’t. Especially when we don’t. (Terri)
  • That love is more persuasive than words. (Hayden)
  • Relax and don’t be so uptight. Sure there are rules. But don’t be afraid to question the dumb ones. Sometimes your Mission President doesn’t even know about the dumb rules. (Lewis)
  • The language will come as long as you continue to try. Don’t spend so much time worrying about it. Complain less and enjoy the experience more. Two years is nothing and you’ll miss it constantly. Also 8 years being home and I still haven’t found the time or money to go back. (Bryan)
  • Focus less on lesson plans and more on scriptural knowledge. The Lord’s words are what bring light and truth into the lives of those seeking it. (Andrew)
  • How quickly the mission goes by. Don’t waste time, it never comes back. (Lee)
  • No matter how discouraged you might feel and no matter how difficult the language and no matter what anyone else tells you, you will in fact learn to speak, read, and write in Thai. The key to learning Thai is 1. a positive mental attitude, 2. willingness to fail productively, but this requires regular effort, 3. don’t be discouraged, 4. don’t be over confident, just be humble and diligent and prayerful. I struggled mightily with the language, was told by others that I would never speak Thai, but worked to overcome a poor attitude and eventually learned the language well enough to be an interpreter and translator in Thai. Decades later I still speak, read, and write Thai. (Paul)
  • I wish I had learned to write as well as speak Thai. I believe most missionaries in Thailand now learn to write the language. (Susan)
  • The language! (Leron)
  • Wish I had known more about the Priesthood and it’s power. I had limited experience, as I had only been a member for less than two years. Though I had seen the Priesthood work in preserving my dad’s life, I hadn’t had the opportunity to use it much. (Ron)
  • Don’t run after the train takes off! Don’t eat the smallest chilly pepper. (Patchara)
  • Learn Thai better. (Fred)

Any advice/testimony for pre-missionaries going to Bangkok?

  • Get ready to work. Rejection is more common than acceptance, so get used to the idea. Learn how to get along with people at close quarters (or you will want to kill your companion, or he will want to kill you). Beware of the dogs, and also the lady boys (the missionaries call them “decepticons” as a code word). Thai women will get a lot more attractive the longer you’re there, but you’ll probably return to normal after you get back. It’s extremely rude, even taboo, to show people the bottom of your feet, or use your feet to do certain things. It’s also very disrespectful to step over food (which is usually on a mat on the floor), step over people (if they were ever lying on the floor), or throw things over people’s heads. The taxi drivers can be real crooks. Don’t let them rip you off because you’re a foreigner. In fact, be careful not to let anyone rip you off. Most things in Thailand are cheap for good reason. Don’t waste your money on junk. (Erik)
  • Learn and understand Buddhist teachings. (Jay)
  • Know that the Lord and Heavenly Father will always be there to listen and guide you to your next course of action when you listen to the Holy Ghost. (Sokunthea)
  • I’m going to be frank, it is a hard mission. Since Thailand isn’t a Christian nation they accept a lot of things. This can be really difficult to emotionally bear. I remember one time during district meeting we all cried. Cried because of the sorrow people had to go through. Please prepare yourself emotionally to see all. The people of Thailand do have great sorrow and that is why missionary work is so extremely important. They are desperate for the light of Christ. They need you to show them the way to being happy again. They need to know where to receive comfort and love. They need to know how to finally become free from their guilt and wrongdoings. So even when it is hard to bare you must always move forward with this great cause. Alma 28:14 Don’t forget to look heavenward when you need His love and comfort too! (Emily)
  • My mission was hard, but one of the best things I have ever done. It’s amazing how much I didn’t know about the gospel, but learned on my mission. I’m so glad that I have had my mission experience because it helps me be a better mother and stronger member of the church.
  • The only advice I will give is this; work, work, and work. When you work you have fun. When you work you baptize people. When you work you feel the spirit. When you work you bless people’s lives. It all comes down to working hard and never looking back or thinking about how difficult things are. Just work and God will bless your life beyond your comprehension. (Nathaniel)
  • Read your scriptures and know the doctrine. A mission should add to and strengthen your already existing testimony of the truthfulness of the restored gospel of Jesus Christ, the prophet Joseph Smith, and the Book of Mormon. (Joe)
  • Be patient with myself learning the language. (Paul)
  • It is the best mission in the world. (Saraj)
  • The language is hard, but trust that God has called you to that mission with the confidence that you will learn the language. (Tim)
  • Humble yourself. This isn’t about you. It’s about what you can do. (Weston)
  • Love it. Serve others. Enjoy the learning experiences. Laugh at yourself. Learn something from each companion. Try new things. (Justin)
  • Thailand Bangkok Mission = TBM = The best mission. Don’t get discouraged when people say they are Buddhist or don’t have “free time.” There are a lot worse ways to be rejected. The Lord loves them and has prepared thousands of people to hear your message regardless of the statistics against Christianity. The Gospel of Jesus Christ has the power to pierce through language and cultural barriers. Love the people you serve with and be happy and optimistic even if you have to fake it until it becomes real. (Alex)
  • So many brothers and sisters are ready to follow Christ. Don’t try to talk someone into believing or reason them to faith. The Lord will prepare them. (Michael)
  • Focus on being happy in the mission and in the work, not on baptizing or teaching or any of those things. Don’t miss the forest for the trees; maintain the big eternal picture. (Terri)
  • Thank your lucky stars. (Hayden)
  • Thailand is not a South American mission. You will never, ever baptize 100 people a week. Not even in your whole mission. But there are people who are ready to hear the gospel and accept it. Work harder than you’ve ever worked and guide them to the truth. Nothing will give you greater joy in the mission field. (Bryan)
  • Getting people to baptism is easy through flirting, charisma, and being insincere. But conversion to Christ requires honesty, love unfeigned, diligent service and patience. Pushing individuals to baptism for any other reason outside of Christ’s gospel will lead to increased inactivity and a drain on the physical and spiritual resources of The Church in Thailand. (Andrew)
  • Remember to be humble and teachable. (Lee)
  • Keep an open mind and heart. Admire something every day. I remember being just as wowed by the country, people, temples, simply everything, from the first day in country to my last. Many others became bored with the things that greenies found exotic when they first arrived; I was never bored and never took any of it for granted. I was just as wide-eyed and impressed with the country and people on the last day of my mission as I was on the first day in country. (Paul)
  • Learn about the Thai culture before you go, including the Buddhist faith. Make it a point to savor every moment. Live in those moments and record them. You will have many unique, bizarre, hilarious, and faith promoting experiences you won’t want to forget! (Susan)
  • Neal A. Maxwell came to our Stake Conference after I received my call and he spoke about an Elder who was called to Thailand and he complained about the country, the people, the smells, etc… He counseled the Elder to take his mind off himself and serve the people. I introduced myself after the conference and told him I was called to Thailand. He told me just love the people and you will have a successful mission. I instantly fell in love with the people of Thailand and could not understand why the other Elder didn’t. Love the people who you are serving and you will have a successful mission! (Leron)
  • Serving a mission is the best thing, if you give it everything you’ve got. It will be hard at times, but rewarding. Besides a strong testimony and good work ethic, you need to be able to exercise faith and have a good attitude. Make up your mind beforehand, that you will be a good companion and love the people. Don’t get discouraged with the language, it is difficult, but with hard work and the help of the Lord, it will come (just use it, talk to everybody. I loved to talk to the kids when I felt I wasn’t doing so well, they thought I was great.) We didn’t learn to read until we had been in Thailand for quite awhile, so you have a huge advantage that we didn’t have (but two of my children did), to learn to read right away. It helped them learn the language much quicker, so learn the alphabet as good as you can. If you have the chance, listen to someone speak Thai so you are a little familiar with the sound. Most of all, be willing to work. Learn the Gospel, especially The Book of Mormon. This is His church and He has prepared these people to hear His message now. (Ron)
  • Recognize spiritual guidance! (Patchara)
  • Humble yourself so Thai will come. (Fred)

What was a funny language mistake?

  • One involved the law of chastity, so I’ll just leave it at that. I accidentally said, and bore fervent testimony that Joseph Smith saw God the Father and Jesus Christ in a BAR, rather than a GROVE (very small difference for a greenie). (Erik)
  • Phra hong nam – holy bathroom. (Jay)
  • My companion was still pretty new. We were out inviting and had stopped to talk to a nice lady. She asked us why we don’t wear pants. The words pants and cross are very similar in Thai. My companion thought she was asking why we don’t wear the cross. So she launched into this whole explanation, which was really well done, about how we believe Christ resurrected after being on the cross. As she was explaining I didn’t realize she misunderstood. I was really curious how she was going to tie this together until it finally clicked in my mind what was going on. By that time my companion was ending her explanation with, “So we don’t wear it because Christ lives!” The woman looked at us like we were crazy and walked away. I laughed as I told my companion that she just told her that we don’t wear pants because Christ lives. we laughed about it for a long time! (Emily)
  • You have to watch your tones! Using the wrong inflection can completely change the meaning of the word! (Brianna)
  • I called myself God while teaching in the MTC, that was hilarious. My companion in one of my first areas called an investigators son a “butt” on accident. The kids nickname was don, tree, but he said gon instead which means butt haha. (Nathaniel)
  • Lots of missionaries replace the word for “to come” with “dog”. So instead of telling someone to come they call the person a dog. Thai is a tonal language so these things types of mixups happen fairly regularly especially with new missionaries. (Joe)
  • One time when I was teaching a new member lesson about keeping the Sabbath day holy, instead of saying we shouldn’t work (Tham ngan) on Sunday, I said we shouldn’t get married (tengan ) on Sunday. (Emily)
  • The words for ride and defecate  are the same but with different tones, so sometimes a missionary would defecate his bike or an elephant instead of ride it. (Paul)
  • I called a random lady a ghost. (Saraj)
  • I can’t hear tones, so one day, near the end of my mission, a Thai man told me he got headaches when he had to actually focus on what I was saying. I figured if he was the first person to tell me that on my mission, and I was about to go home, I definitely had the spirit with me most of the time. (Tim)
  • In my first area, I asked a (drunk) investigator if he had been praying, and he told me that he raises cows. (Weston)
  • While giving a blessing, telling the person I put my “pig” on their head instead of my “hands” on their head. (Justin)
  • When I was in the Mission Training Center, we taught many of our lessons in Thai which was difficult because our language skills were limited. One subject that was particularly difficult was small talk because we were focusing so hard on learning all the Gospel terms. In a failed attempt at small talk, I tried to ask my “investigator” if he had good dreams last night because we had taught him the night before and were then teaching him again that morning. I mixed up the word dream with the word girlfriend and so what I actually asked him was, “did you have a good girlfriend last night?” That didn’t go over too well but it was funny. (Alex)
  • I translated Cock Crows thrice as the chicken bawls three times. (Michael)
  • Tonal inflections can cause some funny problems. (Hayden)
  • Ha, I remember one nong kiaw was on his second move and practicing how to teach some one how to pray. Instead of saying “bow your head” (goom naa) he said “gon naa” which can be directly translated as bottom face. It was too funny, but he was a good sport about it and laughed with us. (Bryan)
  • Vowel mispronunciations leading to my referring to hands as pigs, and telling someone they were evil when I was trying to ask their name. Tonal mistake calling a person a dog or horse when I was trying to ask where they had been. There were many others. (Paul)
  • Thai is a tonal language and you can get into trouble easily. Khrai with a level tone means anyone… khrai with a falling tone means sexual urges! (Leron)
  • One Elder was welcoming everyone to Church for a baptism, and used the wrong tone on “tonrab”. It has quite a different meaning and caused a big laugh from the members. (Ron)
  • To many to write down. (Fred)