Saturday, April 23, 2016

Khmer New Year with Cambodians in Ohio!

Two weeks ago, we learned that there is a large Cambodian population in Columbus, Ohio - less than three hours from us!  While I wish we had known this four years ago (if you knew and didn't tell us, shame on you! haha), we're grateful that God has finally brought these people into our lives this month and we're anxious to see how these relationships develop.

Pastors Chenda and Phal preaching

We spent the last two Sundays worshiping, sharing, and fellowshiping with two Cambodian congregations in Columbus, Ohio.  Titus has this testimony to share about the experience:
               What a blessing for the past two Sundays to attend the worship services with my fellow Cambodian Christians in Columbus, Ohio. The tears of joy and emotions of happiness were overflowed inside my heart when I saw my own people worshiping and serving the Lord God Almighty wholeheartedly in this foreign country. I got to share my heart for our ministries in Cambodia.
             My heart was filled with emotion because of their lives during the Khmer Rouge and in the refugee camps and in United States. Each one of them had lost most of their family members and relatives during the civil war in Cambodia.
But they also confessed that God has a bigger plan for Cambodia. I thought I have been through a lot of things (good and bad) for the past 4.5 years in the soil of America but after hearing their stories, I was humbled! Not just humbled, very humbled!
On April 10 and 17, we attended services at both congregations and enjoyed meals and fellowship with the pastors, their families, and other church members.  We were asked to share about our story (how we met and how Titus came to the States) and our ministry in Cambodia.  We were asked to pray over the sick.  We were prayed over.

Titus praying for healing

As we shared in our last post, Khmer New Year (Cambodia's biggest holiday) was April 14-16.  On April 17, Cambodian American Christian Fellowship (where we attend the morning service) had a Khmer New Year picnic following the service.

The picnic was a great opportunity to have fellowship with the church congregation and many others who attended.  There was a large buffet of Cambodian food as well as hamburgers and hot dogs.  Children and adults played traditional Khmer New Year games, including: tug of war, sack races, various relay races, and a watermelon eating contest.

Sophear was among the youngest to participate in an Easter egg hunt.  She found 17 eggs and while everyone else had quit, she was determined to cover every inch of the neighboring field to ensure no eggs were left behind!

Some of the traditional Cambodian food, including homemade donuts

The Egg Hunt and The Most Determined Hunter

The Children's Sack Race

Men vs. Women in Tug of War

Following the first service and Khmer New Year's picnic at Cambodian American Christian Fellowship, we visited Cambodian United Methodist Mission Fellowship only a few minutes away.  After the 3:00 service there, we had a time of fellowship and more Cambodian food at Pastor Phal's home with his family.
  • Thank you for praying for Pastor Chenda and Pastor Phal and the congregations at Cambodian American Christian Fellowship and Cambodian United Methodist Mission Fellowship.
  • Pray that both churches can develop a culture that is welcoming and desirable to all generations.
  • Pray that God will bless the ministry of Pastors Chenda and Phal and that more Cambodian-Americans in Ohio will discover the Good News that is the life and message of Jesus Christ!

To see Christ glorified in Cambodia (and Ohio!),
Titus, Jewel, Sophear, & Little Man

1 comment:

  1. Jewel and Titus!
    What a wonderful report on your week-end! I am overjoyed to know you were able to fellowship with Cambodians! I pray many will catch the vision to help you spread the gospel in Cambodia!