Pattaya’s Church of the Assumption celebrated its first anniversary with a special mass and outdoor fair.
Bishop of Chantaburi Silvio Siripong Charatsri led the Nov. 18 ceremony, aided by Bishop Emeritus Lawrence Thienchai Samanjit and priests from the diocese. Two choirs from the Philippines and area students provided the music.
Built by Pornthep Phornprapha and Chatri Sophonpanich on Soi Siam Country Club for about 60 million baht, the church opened Nov. 19, 2011 in a “green environment zone.” Meant to be both environmentally sensitive and Thai-accented, the 21-rai house of worship resides in the Thaworn-Usa Thani Botanical Garden.
Bishop Silvio and Bishop Lawrence celebrate Mass, with Father Michael Veera (right) and Father Michael Jaiseri (2nd left) from Pattaya.
Pornthep, who donated the land, and his wife attended the anniversary mass, as did Harald Link of B. Grimm and his wife, and St. Nikolas Church’s Rev. Joseph Naenna.
The celebration actually began before mass, with guests making a procession around the church, finishing at a statue of the Virgin Mary, where they left roses. The church erected a large tent on the grounds where faithful from as far away as Hua Hin enjoyed breakfast.
Various stalls offered more food and wares for the hungry and for Christmas shoppers.
The Church of the Assumption Pattaya is administered by the Diocese of Chantaburi. Mass is celebrated Sundays at 9:30 a.m. in Thai and 11 a.m. in English.