Sunday, May 5, 2019

May Update 2019 (part 1)

Dear Friends and Family,

Good Friday Service…  

We had a beautiful Good Friday service at Poipet. Although most people had attended the Living Water Alliance church many years before, to some this was their first Good Friday service! After Soeuth finished giving a message, he asked the congregation a few application questions: “Why are you here tonight? What does Good Friday mean to you?” Although many people bravely stood up to express the importance of Good Friday, one young believer summed it well. Vichay, aged 34, a young believer, a single mother of three small kids, with tears of gratitude flowing down her face while holding lighted candles, stood up and said, “I have ran away from God for many times," she sobbed uncontrollably while continuing,  “I used to come to church off and on, but my desire after worldly possessions sent me to deeper and deeper to the pits of life, again and again. And yet, no matter how evil I was, Jesus kept pursuing me! His love chased after me to the point of giving up His own life. I am here tonight because the Jesus traded my place on Calvary. No matter how deep I fall, Jesus is not giving up on me. This is Good Friday to me."

Good Friday service at Living Water Alliance church
Poipet Class…   

Because of time conflicts, the Poipet leadership class was postponed for a while until recently, where 32 people excitedly attended and eagerly participated in class discussions. As usual, we started the class with simple questions, “What has God been doing in your life?” How have you seen God at work recently?” Then, one after another, believers took turns to share their recent encounters with the living God. While a few students shared about God's protection and provision, many encountered His healing touch in a powerful way as one believer told her story well…

Poipet leadership class
Seung, a devoted young wife and loving mother of 3 active little girls, was lying helplessly in bed trying to fight a sickness. Seung’s husband (Phear), makes a living by selling noodles on wheels.  Every day at 3 o’clock in the morning, the young couple diligently gets up to prepare a huge pot of soup ready for their daily business.

Seung and her three daughters

Seung's husband on his way to sell noodles on wheels
But last week, in addition to her chronic joined pains, Seung was plagued with a nasty flu that confined her to be bedridden for three days. She felt helpless watching her husband trying to get things ready as she was too weak to help. In a desperate need to help her family, Seung cried out to God asking for healing through these prayers, “Abba, Father! Your daughter is sick. I need to get better, so I can help my family. I need your healing touch which only You can give. Please help me.” In tears of faith, she began whispering songs of praises to God. She had no voice (due to hoarseness) nor does she have any natural ability to sing, but in her desperate moment of need, she chose to pronounce and articulate each word and claimed every promise spoken in the lyrics of one of her favorite Khmer traditional hymnals, “By Grace Alone." She repeated the song over and over that by the time she finished the seventh rounds, her voice returned! Then, a sudden rush of energy overwhelmed her that she got up and was dancing around and singing praises to God! She kept shouting louder and louder and did not even care that it was still very early in the morning! Her joyful singing was full of volume and excitement that her husband stopped what he was doing but came to look at his dear wife with great astonishment! Seung went on with her story, “I asked God for help. He heard my prayers."  Both Seung and her husband gave praises to God for this miraculous healing…

Ty and Lucy with Khmer kids at one of village ministries
We are blessed to have Tyanne Minyard, a 19-year old young lady from Central Pacific District (CPD) to spend a few months helping us with Anlong Veng ministries through teaching English literacy to village kids and youth. With her cheerful smiles which are often accompanied by a humorous and fun-loving, bubble personality, the local kids really enjoy having. They are always looking forward to their daily English classes with “Teacher Ty."

Although language barrier is a constant challenge for her daily activities, Ty is learning and trying her best to communicate to her students in broken Khmer while the students respond back in their broken English. Every attempt to communicate gives opportunity for laugher and better understanding and appreciation from both parties which eventually lead to a strengthened relationship. Regardless of the difficulties, Ty is responsible for and carries out her tasks well. Ty counts this opportunity as a great learning experience.  We are grateful to have her here with us. Thank you CPD, for supporting and for sending Ty to Cambodia.

First Easter Service at Srae Nouy…  

Because of conflict with Khmer New Year when church families visited their hometowns and could not participate in Easter celebration on the actual date, Pastor Dy requested that the joined Easter service be postponed to April 28 (one week after the actual Easter weekend). The local church leaders unanimously agreed. On the appointed date, nearly 300 believers (186 adults and teens and 108 children) from Srae Nouy and from all 11 other villages in Anlong Veng areas came to participate in this joyful celebration! About 90% of those who attended experienced their first Easter celebration! The church families celebrated the special occasion with a feast of curry and rice noodles.

Nearly 300 people attended the first Easter celebration at Srae Nouy Alliance church!
Family News…

We enjoyed having Syna’s niece, Lucy Tol, spend two weeks with us where she was able to visit different locations of her father’s birthplace as well an opportunity to participate in and enjoy fun and a festive Khmer New Year celebration.

Lucy & Syna visiting Angkor Wat
Recently, on her way to visit family in America, Syna encountered some frightful experiences during her long oversea flights to Minneapolis including 15 hours of layover in Guangzhou, China! In her moments of anxiousness, God allowed opportunities, two separate occasions, where she was able to divert her anxieties into opportunities to comfort two complete strangers! Both young ladies from Europe in their early 20’s, were visiting countries around Asia, but encountered some mishaps along the way where immediate emergency trips where required. In their distressed moments, Syna had opportunities for meaningful conversations with and a chance to pray for both girls!

Finally, the long awaiting moment arrived when Syna was able to hold our precious grandson, Jesse Dominik Lao, who was already 7 weeks old! Upon seeing him for the first time, all the stress and weariness of traveling completely vanished! Thank YOU, Lord, for this precious gift of life…

Syna holding our 7-week old grandson, Jesse Donminik Lao
Justin, Katie, and Jesse Lao
Here are some dates and events needing your intercession prayers…

1. May 11-24, three ladies from the Philippines will be staying with us for a while hoping to learn about ministry opportunities to be involved in the near future. These dear ladies have been working closely with Alliance churches in other part of Cambodia for the past few years, but recently, they feel called to pursue another direction of ministries, and we are hoping and praying that Anlong Veng is that direction!

2. May 12-16: The long awaited and most anticipated event, the annual motorbike mission trip, for the northwest regional Alliance youth ministries is approaching! Everyone is super excited about this trip. We won’t know for sure how many will show up until the last minutes because some people are still undecided due to work schedules and child care issues  among others. Pray for protection from any potential accidents for learning and growing opportunities for all participants.

3. At least four Alliance churches in Poipet areas are having difficulties trying to obtain “permissions worship” from their local authorities. Pray that God would open the ways.

4. Due to severe drought, church families around Anlong Veng areas are facing difficulties finding good water supplies. In some villages, even after few attempts to dig/drill a well in each location, the hired well specialists could not seem to find any source of water underneath. Please pray to the God of the Living Water to direct these specialists to the right spring.

Thank you as always for your faithful prayers and support for the Anlong Veng church ministries. Please share with us what God is doing in your midst.

Blessings,
Soeuth & Syna

Tuesday, April 16, 2019

April Update 2019 (part 2)

Dear Friends and Family,

Su-sadey-cha-nam-thmey! Happy Khmer New Year!

Most homes, hotels, guesthouses, and streets in Cambodia are all decorated with lights and ornaments of glittering paper stars and sparkling wreathes in preparation for the coming festive Khmer New Year (April 14-16). To get a head start, some people already made traveling arrangements for the long weekends to visit their hometowns located mostly in rural areas. All schools, companies, NGOs, and any official work places will be closed so people could travel home for the holidays. To celebrate the new year, people blast out popular traditional music on loudspeakers and aggressively invite any observer to join in the circular dances. It is a week-long continuous party. Being it is April, the hottest time of the year, using water guns or any bucket, young people enjoy splashing cool water on to any unsuspected passerby. So, if you don’t want to get wet, don’t venture outside, especially around new years time...

New Years decorations
Happy Khmer New Year!
National KEC/ Alliance Conference…

National Alliance conference took place on April 1-3 in the capital city of Phnom Penh at the Khmer Evangelical Church (KEC) headquarter where 350+ Alliance church leaders from all over the country attended. Among the attendees, 20 people from the Anlong Veng church ministries participated in conference for the first time! This year's conference was special because there was an election for National Alliance church president as well as elections for all national coordinators for men, women, youth, and children ministries. It was a beautiful sight to see former national president, Rev. Sok Sophon, passing on the baton to the newly elected president, Rev. Roum Chamroeun.

350 church leaders attended the National Alliance conference
National Alliance Youth Conference…

Alliance youth conference
Soeuth & Syna at Alliance youth conference
670 people attended a recently Alliance youth conference
Young people performed traditional dance at Alliance youth camp
We left the adult conference a day early and traveled to Thma Koul Eden Center in Battambang province to prepare the place for the youth conference. There was a lot of works to be done ahead of time and every helping hand was needed. Late afternoon on the first day of the conference, excited and energetic young people rushed out from buses, vans, and other vehicles carrying their backpacks and personal belongings. They scampered off to their assigned sleeping quarters, while their leaders registered and paid for their youth groups. One large group (145 of them) of tribal people from Mondoulkiri province, due to transportation issues, did not arrive until 11:30 pm. They left their homes at 6am that morning! The next morning, they were wide awake and excited enough to enjoy the rest of the conference. Various speakers spoke encouraging, yet challenge messages based on the conference theme: “No Compromise to Sins." Throughout the conference there were opportunities for young people to sing special songs and perform skits and dramas. The unique part about this year conference is that, some of the former youth committees had volunteered to oversee the cooking and   preparing 7 meals for the entire conference! Their helping hands were much appreciative by all.  Although only 640 people registered and paid for the conference, 670 people attended!

Former youth committees volunteered at recent Alliance youth camp
Family News…

Since spring break fell on the same week as the conferences, Jonathan went along with us to Phnom Penh and then to Battambang. He spent time in the guesthouses playing his new video games while we attended conferences. At the youth camp, Jonathan earned many community service hours collecting garbage! In between conferences, Syna managed to bake an apple pie (his favorite) to celebrate Jonathan’s early 17th birthday (his birthday was April 9th).

Jonathan helping grandma selling t-shirts at youth conference
It was a joy to have Syna’s sister, Nay, and her 87-year-old mother visiting us from Tacoma,
Washington State, for a few days also to help us at the youth conference. Nay served as a camp nurse while Mom helped to sell t-shirts, a fundraising project for youth conference… Syna is counting the days remains until she can hold our first grandchild, Jesse Dominik Lao…

Dates & events needing your prayers…

1. The Cambodian churches are looking forward to celebrate the Resurrection Day.  For many new believers in the Anlong Veng areas, this will be their first Easter celebration.

2. April 10-24: Syna’s niece is visiting Cambodia for the first time in hope to learn about her Cambodian heritage. Pray for protection, safe traveling, and family time.

3. People will be traveling home for the Khmer New Year.  Pray for safety and protection. This is one of the major testing times for new believers. Pray that they would remain steadfast with their decision to follow Christ.

4. April 19-21: We will be traveling to Poipet for our next leadership class and to join the Living Water Alliance for Easter celebration. Soeuth will give an Easter message that Sunday.

5. April 24-30: Syna will be visiting Justin and his family in Saint Paul, MN.

6. April 27: Soeuth will be traveled to our next national youth committee meeting in Phnom Penh.

7. May 13-16: Northwest Alliance regional youth ministry is preparing for the annual motorbike mission trip. This is one of the most sought after events of the year. Pray for the region youth committees as they prepare for this special event.

We are grateful for your on-going support in prayers and finance. We appreciate your partnership in the Anlong Veng and overall Cambodian church ministries. Please share with us what God is doing in your midst.

Because He Lives,
Soeuth & Syna

Wednesday, April 3, 2019

April Update 2019

Dear praying friends and family,

Jum reap su-ah! Greetings! We trust that you are well. We are nearing the peak of a hot season, with the average daily temperature in mid to high 90’s with 100% humidity. But it is also the best time of the year for mouthwatering, juicy mangoes!

It's a season for mangoes!
Life has been a faster pace for us upon getting back from Hawaii. Immediately after we landed onto Cambodian soil, we went to Phnom Penh, the capital city, for an annual prayer retreat for International Workers. It was an awesome retreat!!!!

Annual prayer retreat in Phnom Penh
Short Term Team

March 16-24, we hosted a visiting team of six from Kailua Community Church from Hawaii. It was their first time in Cambodia! The team did an excellent job with puppet shows for the children ministry in four villages. Everyone (kids and adults alike) had a good laugh watching puppet shows. Their two team leaders took turns speaking encouraging words on requested topics: church as the body of Christ, biblical marriage, church among the community. In addition to speaking and visiting places, the team had a chance to attend a Cambodian traditional wedding, baby dedication, interact with villagers, and try out some local delicacies…

Kailua team tasted local delicacies

Kid ministry at Trapang Krasang village

Kids watching puppet show
Kailua team dedicated baby Noah to God
Prayer service at Andong Chan village
Toul Prich kids ministry
A Surprised Visit

As soon as we sent off the Kailua team to the airport on Sunday March 25, we got a surprise visit from the Great Commission Women of the Cambodian Evangelical Church (CEC)! 20 ladies (mostly from America and some from other provinces in Cambodia) came traveling in a big bus from Phnom Penh to rural areas wanting to visit some of the churches in Anlong Veng! It just so happened that on the day of their visit, we had our first and most heavy rain of the season! It was raining hard for a few hours. The city bus did not do well on our bumpy and muddy rural roads. Half way through to the first village (to Srae Kandal village), we stopped to buy some ponchos and umbrellas for our visitors and began loading up the ladies onto two rented “mechanical cows” (a wooden large wagon pulled by an big engine). Because of the rain, the church service was 45-60 minutes delayed in both village churches. Despite the unexpected, challenging weather, every one of the CEC visitors seemed to enjoy the villages and the adventure! Many of the visitors agreed and shouted, “This was my first time ever riding on a mechanical cow! And it was so much fun!”

Traveling on mechanical cows to village
20 ladies riding on two mechanical cows to church
First Christian Wedding in the Village

In our last update, we asked for your prayers for the first Christian wedding to be taken on March 21, here is what happened…

Douch (aka Daniel) met his wife, Tang Kouy, a 28 years old single mother of two small kids, on social media. When Douch began to show romantic interests toward Tang Kouy, she immediately told him that she already made a mistake once with her previous marriage. Now that she is a follower of Jesus Christ, she would not settle down and marry with an unbeliever. Douch was so inspired by her determination and devotion to choose Christ above romance that he wanted to check out what this new God was all about. At first, Douch began to show up once in a while to Syna’s discipleship class at Andong Chan (where Tang Kouy’s parents live). One week after another, he sat through and listened. He began to openly participate in weekly class discussions! His interests in God became so evident that he decided to choose Christ as his Lord and Savior in early November 2018. (He was among the 45 people who got baptized on February 18!) A few weeks before his baptism, Douch asked if Syna would think of a name to give him. He asked for a Christian name. Syna explained the story behind Daniel and named him Daniel on his baptismal day…

When the young couple decided to marry, Soeuth met with and counseled them a few times before the special date. On their wedding day, they chose to honor Christ all the way through despite his parent's wish. They decided on a small Christian wedding and did not serve any alcoholic beverage at reception. Daniel’s mother, not yet a believer, was very furious and mean! Though she and her husband grudgingly attended the wedding out of parental duty, she was spiteful toward the young couple all week long! She was often saying mean and harsh words: “You are fools! No alcohol for a wedding feast! Then, you will have no guests to attend your wedding. And without guests, you will lose big time!” (Local people mostly give cash for wedding gifts, and the marrying couple relies on these gifts to pay for expensive wedding expenses). Despite her warnings, the young couple chose to trust God above all else. As the result, God rewarded their faithfulness. Guests, friends, and relatives (mostly from Tang Kouy’s side) gave generously! At the end of the day, when all the expenses were added up and gifts counted, the money they collected was enough to pay for everything even down to the small details. They even had $20.00 extra! Daniel’s mother could not find a word to respond.  Daniel later chuckled and softly commented to his bride, “Just as God had shut the mouths of lions a long time ago, the same God is now shutting up the mouth of my mother."

First Christian wedding in the village
Date & Events needing your payers…

1- March 30- April 7: We look forward to have Jonathan, our youngest son, back to Cambodia from Dalat school for a week of spring break.

2- Alliance (adult) biannual conference, April 1-3, at Phnom Penh.  The National church leaders will have a presidential election this year. Pray that God would raise up the right leader for the job.

3- Alliance national youth conference, April 5-7, at Eden Center in Batthambang province.  We are expecting 600 plus youth in attendant. Pray for safe travels and protection for all.

4- April 10-24: One of Syna’s nieces will visit Cambodia for the first time. Lucia Tol lost her father to cancer almost two years ago and is now wishing to visit his birth and childhood places in hope to learn more about her Cambodian heritage.

5- April 15-17: Khmer/Cambodian New Year. Pray for safety for those who will be traveling home for the holidays. Pray for new believers to remain steadfast with their decision to follow Christ in the midst of temptations and family persecutions.

6- April 24-30: Thanks to generous friends from Minnesota, Syna will visit and meet our first grandchild, Jesse Dominik Lao, in Satin Paul, Minneapolis. Syna is full of excitement!

Thank you for choosing to partner with us through the Cambodian ministries with your prayers and finance. Your financial gift toward the Alliance Missions enables us to keep on serving Christ in this part of the world bringing the message of Hope and Salvation to Lost people in Cambodia and around the world. Lost people matter to God. He wants them found. Thank you for your partnership in this kingdom movement. Please share with us what God is doing in your midst.

Blessings,
Soeuth & Syna Lao

Monday, March 11, 2019

March Update 2019

Dear Friends and Family,

Aloha!!!

We were in Hawaii, Feb. 23-March 11, speaking at two Alliance mission conferences! In between speaking, we also had some down time where generous church families graciously took turns showing us around some of the most beautiful sites in Honolulu! We feel so blessed and loved.

And while here, we received the greatest news and blessing of all, the birth of our first grandchild! After more than 20 hours of painful labor, a beautiful and healthy baby boy, Jesse Dominik Lao, was born to proud parents Justin and Katie on March 6 at 7:51am weighing 8.10 pounds! Both mom and baby are healthy and strong. For now, we could only treasure and love our grandson from a distant through pictures and videos…

Our first born, Justin, holding his first born child
After 20+ hours of labor, Katie lovingly holds her first born son
The few weeks before Hawaii trip were intense, busy times for us back in Anlong Veng…

- February 8, Soeuth had the honor and privilege of marrying and officiating an Alliance MK who grew up in Poipet and married another MK! We have known the bride’s family more than twenty years. It is a joy to see children of International Workers choose to follow their parents’ footstep in marriage and in ministries.

Two MKs (missionary kid) got married in the country they grew up in
- Soeuth attended and spoke at an Alliance men prayer retreat in Thma Koul Eden Center, February 14-15 where more than 300 men attended. Immediately after speaking, Soeuth drove six hours back to Anlong Veng to be on time to receive an Alliance film crew, February 16-21. The timing was perfect for the team to see and to participate in a baptismal service.

300+ Alliance men attended annual prayer retreat at Eden Center
- On February 18, village house churches of Anlong Veng ministries had a joint baptismal service, at Andong Chan village. We were expecting more people, but due to lack of transportation, one village could not join the event. As the result only about 120 people attended the service and among them, 45 people got baptized.

120 villagers participated in worship service before baptism

Pastor Dy prayed before baptism


People lined up to be baptized
45 new believers got baptized at Andong Chang village
As soon as we get back to Cambodia, March 13, we will be on the road again to attend our field annual prayer retreat on March 14-15 for International Workers in Phnom Penh. After the retreat, we will return to Anlong Veng to host a short-term team of six from the Kailua Bible (Alliance) Church, Honolulu, HI. This will be the team’s first time to Cambodia!

Dates and event needing your prayers…

- Kailua team visiting Anlong Veng, March 16-24.
- Soeuth will perform a wedding, the first Christian wedding at Andong Chan village, March 21.
- Jonathan returns home for spring break, March 30- April 7.
- National Alliance adult conference in Phnom Penh, April 1-3.
- National Alliance youth conference in Thma Koul Eden center, April 5-7
- Khmer New Year, April 15-17

Thank you so much for your prayers and support! We appreciate your partnership in the growing Cambodian church ministries. Please share with us what God is doing in your midst.

Blessings,
Soeuth & Syna

Tuesday, February 12, 2019

February Update 2019

Dear Praying Friends and Family,

Jesus said, “Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven" Matthew 18:3. He also said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these” Matthew 19:14.

In a culture where adults and elderly are honored and respected, recently during Andong Chan village ministries, we heard stories of how God used some precious little children to demonstrate His power and might in a special way. At a “prayer & share”  time Syna simply asked, “What and how have you seen God at work this week?” Then, one after the another, Kong and a few other shared recent experiences of spiritual encounters…

Rebecka and Tamma’s Prayers…

Rebecka and Tamma sharing their lunch at Andong Chan village
Mr. Kong shared that one Sunday evening during a family devotion time, he and his family were madly disturbed by loud secular music blasting from a loud speaker from his neighbor’s house! “I was very upset and wanted to do something about it," but his wife and some of his extended family members pleaded with him to remain calm and pray. After persistent pleas, Kong reluctantly agreed and joined his family in prayers. Kong went on to admit, “Even as I was praying, my heart was still angry!” While the adults and some older kids were praying, two little cousins, Kong’s granddaughters, Rebecka and Tamma, both aged 3, walked around in circle tapping their hands on the adults’ heads praying!  At first, Kong thought that the girls were being naughty while some others thought that the girls were playing a “duck, duck, goose” game! But as they continued listening closely to the girls’ words, they all were utterly amazed! These two precious little girls were literally praying in the authority of Jesus Christ! They went about in a circle repeated these words, “In the Name of Jesus, you evil spirit come out!” Kong shared that as the girls tapped on every person’s head, “I suddenly felt rush of peace and calmness showered over me! Initially I went to pray still full of rage, but God calmed my heart through the girls’ prayers!” Kong continued, “At the end of prayer, the loud secular music was immediately switched to songs of praise and worship!” Apparently, these loud neighbors were also members of Andong Chan village! But being that it was Chinese New Year time they said, “We were bored and just wanted to try a different flavor of music.” After realizing that their actions were causing disturbances to Kong, they quickly came to Kong’s house to confess their misconducts. Kong and his family immediately reconciled with their neighbors’ offenses followed by apologies and forgiveness…

Abigail’s Prophecy…

After hearing about Rebecka and Tamma’s story, Pastor Dy recalled an incident that took place recently at Srae Nouy Alliance church where God also used another child to deliver His message. It was at a church service, a few weeks ago,  during a testimony time, Pastor Dy asked if anybody had any testimony or prayer request to share. A few adults went up to share. Sitting beside her mother, one shy little girl, Abigail (age 11) felt the urge to say something to the church. When her mother asked what it was that she wanted to say, Abigail responded, “I don’t know, but I feel that I must go up and say something to the church.” Abigail stood up wanting to go to the front, but when feeling unsure and afraid she immediately sat down. She did this few times. Finally, Pastor Dy motioned for her to come forward. She obeyed, went forward, stood behind the podium, and opened her mouth to speak.  Instead of the usual traditional greetings (where a person put hands together and in prayer and say “Jum-reap su-ah”) Abigail said, “Hello everybody! Are you well?” Some people were surprised and began chuckling at such strange greeting! Abigail then pointed her finger to the congregation and said in a calm way, “You are weak, because there are sins in the camp. Get up then and confess your sins and repent!” After a few moments of hesitation, she rushed out of the church. Afterward, Pastor Dy stood up awkwardly and said, “These were not words of that little girl but of God!” With that he broke down and sobbed. Everyone in the room began to cry uncontrollably followed by more than 30 minutes of prayers for confession and repentance… At hearing this, Kong and Raa and a few others nodded their heads in agreement that what Pastor Dy had just shared was true, because they all were in the same church service that day…

Srae Nouy Kids’ Boldness…

Since enrolled in Abundant Life discipleship class, the Srae Nouy church kids have been on fire for sharing the Good News of Jesus Christ to their peers and teachers at school! Even at a public school, they are known to be bold and courageous for defending their reasons for choosing Christ as their Lord and Savior! Most Cambodian rural public schools (grades k-6) every Thursday set aside a “Art & Talent” show day.  Every child is encouraged to perform special talents, abilities. Some sing any choice of special songs or recite a poem to the class. Most kids would normally choose the latest most popular secular songs to sing, but the Christian kids prefer to sing their favorite praise and worship songs! Instead of reciting traditional Khmer poems or proverbs, the Christian kids choose to recite/ quote long phrases or verses and even short chapters of memorized Scriptures! Some of these Christian kids can sing like angels! Their choice of songs was often accompanied by beautiful talented choreographies! And usually after the Christian kids sang and danced, some non-Christian kids wanted to follow and learn to sing and dance from them! As a result, friendship was built and opportunities to share their faith increased! Pastor Dy said, “It is not uncommon to see school aged kids playing noisily at the church yards, every day.” When asked why they came to church, the kids responded, “We want to follow Jesus too."  Pastor Dy continued, “For the past few weeks, since early January, at least one or two kids came to receive Jesus every day!”

Srae Nouy kids enrolled in discipleship class
We have the Joy and Privilege of seeing God at work among new and young believers around Anlong Veng areas! God, in His mercy for the lost, reveals Himself to those who truly seek Him. As previously and often shared, God is moving and stirring hearts every day! The spiritual field is ready for the harvest! We continue to pray that God would send workers to join us soon.

Toul Prich kids ministry

Syna & two 11 year old girls at Maakhoeun village
Syna reading books to kids at Srae Kandal village
Soeuth telling Christmas stories to 100+ kids at Toul Krasang village
Dates and events needing your prayers:

1. We are excited and anticipating for our first grandchild, grandbaby Lao is coming into the world, early March! Please pray for good health for both the mom and baby and for a smooth delivery. 

2. National KEC (Alliance) men annual prayer retreat is February 14-15 at Thmar Koul Eden Centre.

3. Next northwest quarterly regional youth rally is March 8.

4. Since returned from US, Syna has been battling with upper respiratory infection, and now Soeuth got the same bugs as well.

5. The next few weeks will be busy traveling and speaking at church mission conferences and attending conferences.
Please pray for health and safe traveling for both of us.

Blessings,

Soeuth & Syna

Tuesday, January 29, 2019

January Update 2019

Dear Praying Family and Friends,

Happy New Year! We trust you had a blessed and merry Christmas.

So many exciting things happened since our last update. Obviously, we cannot share everything with you now, but here are a few highlights…

Overall throughout December 2018, we participated and attended 13 Christmas celebrations at various villages and provinces! Since most of the people who attended these celebrated events were first-timers, Soeuth had purposely focused his messages based on evangelism outreach. There were altar calls at the end of each message. As a result, we saw 17 people come forward to receive Christ!

A well respected leader received Christ during a Christmas celebration at Srae Kandal village
Two new believers are now members of Andong Chan village church
Attendance was double at Toul Prich Firm Foundation class
Church attendance was double at a recently Srae Kandal village church service
January 5-18

After attending the GUIDE meeting in Colorado Springs, Syna was able to visit her mother and family in Tacoma, WA for a few days. She then spent a week with Justin and Katie in Minneapolis, MN. It was quite an adjustment for her to acclimate to the extreme changes of weather moving from 96 degrees F of Cambodian tropical weather to below freezing -14 degrees in Minneapolis! While Syna went away, Soeuth and Jonathan held the fort at home enjoying the rest of Jonathan’s winter break. Jonathan returned to Dalat on January 14.

Syna visiting Justin and Katie
Syna visiting with mom and sister in Tacoma, WA
January 23-24

Syna attended a national KEC women prayer retreat that took place in Phnom Penh where 600 plus people attended! In keeping with the retreat theme, “Fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith…”, four different guest speakers shared similar encouraging messages and challenged the audiences to come to Jesus directly for their every needs and struggles. During the first evening service one speaker gave an altar call and at least 85 ladies came forward to receive prayers!

Around 85 KEC ladies responded to an altar call during a recent prayer retreat
600 plus KEC women attended a recently prayer retreat
Although Christmas holiday is behind us and January is nearly gone, it took us a while to finally regroup and resume weekly discipleship classes. Once resumed, everyone seemed excited to be back in the weekly class routine. At a recently “prayer & share time," we learned that during the long Christmas breaks, some believers have been busy sharing the Good News of Jesus Christ to their friends and families! As a result, more numbers are being added to the group of believers in every village! Pastor Dy from Srae Nouy shared, “Sometimes, I feel so ashamed for not doing my part; I did not even get a chance to evangelize yet, but people are coming to the church every day asking to be prayed for and to receive Christ!” As more and more people are experiencing healing and freedom in Christ after being prayed for, words are spreading at a rapid pace among local unbelievers! This past week, the attendant was double in church services as well in weekly classes!

January 27

Although a group of believers at Andong Chan village have been meeting together regularly for bible studies and family devotions,  they had never held a church service until recently. This past Sunday at 3 pm was the official FIRST CHURCH service! To support the group, local believers from four other surrounding villages attended the service. Altogether about 50 people participated in this first-time church service. As in other villages, curious not-yet-believers joined the service “just to check things out." Among the many visitors were Nancy, Noun’s mother (see her story in our December update) and her friend from Toul Prich! Soeuth spoke a message based on Matthew 4:18-22 and challenged the congregation to be “Followers of Jesus and Fishers of men."  Afterward, a few new believers asked if they could share their stories. Among the brave new believers, Noun from Toul Prich shared, “I know without a doubt that Preah Yea-sue (Jesus) is alive and real. I was sick and bedridden for more than three months. But when I asked Jesus for healing, He did! I am alive and well today it is because of Jesus!”

Nancy and a friend from Toul Prich village attended church service for the first time
First church service at Andong Chan village
New believer attended first church service at Andong Chan village
As God is at work stirring the hearts of the people, our Enemy is also busy at work. Please pray for protection for Mr. Kong who is one of the designated leaders for Andong Chan village church. He and his family are going through some testing time. Please pray also for the new believers who are studying and preparing for the first baptismal service which will take place in February.

Dates and events needing prayers:

- February 15-16: National KEC men prayer retreat in Thmar Koul Eden Center.
- February 18: First baptismal service in Andong Chan village.
- February 21: First Christian wedding in San Chey village in Preah Vihear province.
- March 8: Northwest regional quarterly youth rally at Thmar Koul Eden Centre.
- March 21: First Christian wedding in Andong Chan village.

We are very grateful for your faithful prayers. Thank you for supporting the Cambodian ministries through your generous give toward the Alliance Great Commission Fund. Your donation to this fund enables us to keep serving our King in this part of the world sharing the Good News of Hope of Jesus to lost people in Cambodia and all over the world.  Please share with us what God is doing in your life.

Blessings,

Soeuth & Syna