We have Mother’s Day, Father’s day, even Grandparent’s Day, so why not a day to celebrate and honor children. Here in Thailand, as well as many other countries, there is a day set aside to do just that, Children’s Day. This holiday is celebrated on the second Saturday of January.
Thais celebrate Children’s Day because they see children as Thailand’s most valuable asset. They are the hope for the future. Children’s Day is child centered, with lots of activities and celebrations throughout Thailand.
This is the day when parents and family members give gifts to children under 14 years old. Parents, even in the church, do not give presents to their children for Christmas. Instead, they give them gifts on the second Saturday in January. Personally, I think that this is the reason why Children’s Day is celebrated at the beginning of January and not at another time of the year, like in many other countries. Parents want to give gifts to their children, but not have to adopt foreign holidays to do so. Having Children’s Day at this time, allows Thais to ignore Christmas, and Christian Thais to focus on Jesus’s birth and not commercialism.
The church we serve celebrated Children’s Day in service today. The adults were secondary to the children. We sang fun worship songs and then prayed blessings over each child. After the service, we had a kid’s favorite meal and then played games. The children were able to see how much Jesus loves them and that they are special to Him.