May 2018 Prayer Letter

Written by Karl Dahlfred on .

Dear Friends & Family,

Hello again from Edinburgh! We hope you are starting to see signs of spring where you are because here in Scotland it is still cold.  Theoretically, spring should be coming but we are doubtful.  We haven’t been sending updates as often as we were in Thailand but as the end of the first academic year approaches, we wanted to give a brief update on where we’ve been and where we’re going.

braving the weather at Highlands Wildlife Park, Aviemore, Scotland


Research Progress

Karl’s Ph.D work is coming along.  Over the past several months, he has been researching and writing a lot of background material that will form the introductory chapters of his dissertation, such at church & mission history in Thailand, history and definitions of modernism and fundamentalism, and the social and political context of Thailand.  He has also made progress on his literature review and determining what primary sources he will need to look at, where they are located, and when he will go visit the archives.  If you’re interested to know more about his research thus far, email us and we’ll send you a very brief paper that Karl presented recently at a postgraduate colloquium.  The first year of doctoral studies are wrapping up and Karl is getting ready for his first year board review to assess the progress of his project.  The next stage will be primary source research, which means lots of travel!  Karl will be going to Philadelphia in May to spend three weeks doing research at the Presbyterian Historical Society and then to Thailand for a couple months this summer to do research at the Payap University Archives in Chiang Mai.  Karl will go to Philadelphia on his own, but Sun and the kids will join him for part of the time in Thailand, though not all of it due to the kids’ school schedule.  Which leads us to another bit of news…

My presentation was not about time travel. It's a typo.


From Homeschool to Local School

A couple months ago, Joshua started attending a local school here in Edinburgh and it seems to be going well for him.  He is enjoying learning, getting more physical activity, and seems to be getting on okay with the other kids.  Sun continues to homeschool Caitlin, and in August both Caitlin and John will start attending local school as well.  Our family still believes homeschooling is a very worthwhile way to educate kids but for various reasons, it has seemed like a good decision at this stage in our family’s life to transition the kids from homeschooling to a local school.  The school is less than 10 minutes walk from where we live which makes it easy for Karl to walk with Joshua to school in the morning, after which Karl continues to walk into town to work at the university.

Joshua and classmates at an outdoor camp in the Highlands 

Mission, Outreach, and Community

We have asked by our church here in Edinburgh to act as mission coordinators for the church, helping to better connect the congregation and the missionaries the church supports.  Pray for us in this new role at Buccleuch Free Church (pronounced Buh-kloo),.  We’re continuing to get to know the people and families in our apartment building and have been glad to have one family come to church with us sometimes.  Sun has been spending time with numerous ladies of various faiths (or no faith), doing gardening, teaching how to make lotion bars, and joining in community women’s teas.

Thanks for remembering us in prayer, for studies, life, family, and mission.

by Christ’s grace,

Karl & Sun Dahlfred



  • Steady progress in Karl’s Ph.D studies
  • Upcoming travel
  • Being salt and light for Christ to our neighbors


  • Good start for Joshua in a new school
  • Research progress
  • Opportunity to serve as mission coordinators at our church


May 5-25 ~ Karl at Presbyterian Historical Society, Philadelphia for research

May 31 ~ Karl's first-year board review

June 11- Aug 30 ~ Karl at Payap University Archives, Chiang Mai, Thailand for research

July 2 - Aug 7 ~ Sun & kids join Karl in Thailand



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