It seems like it was only yesterday that we, an eclectic mix of travellers from diverse backgrounds and age groups, left the chilly December weather in Singapore for the sunny skies of Siem Reap and warm welcome of Cambodians. We are thankful that we had a lovely shared experience during which we enjoyed spending time together and contributing in our unique ways.
Read on for our thoughts on the trip!
Anastasia Lee: What a heartwarming and joyful trip this was for me – to be able to spend time with the locals, eat delicious food that was prepared for us, and to play with these energetic children!
Gabriel Wong: One of the highlights of the trip for me has to be the visit to Lovea Primary School. Even though the time there was relatively short, it filled my heart to be able to interact and share with the students the meaning of Christmas!
Debbie Chan: It was very heartwarming to see how much hard work the church members dedicated to making the Christmas celebration a success. The members started preparing for the event a month ahead, painstakingly making these decorations by hand!
Deborah Wan: Very thankful for the chance to share with the teachers of Lovea about using Circles to build connections between teachers and students. I had the privilege of hearing teachers share the reason why they joined teaching and also seeing their creativity come alive when they had the chance to create a meaningful talking piece to use when they try having Circle Time with their students! The teachers really showed genuineness, curiosity, interest and courage during our very short training, all that is needed for a ‘circle keeper’. Note: Circle Time is a method teachers and counsellors can use to facilitate discussions. Students are gathered in a circle to participate in a discussion with the teacher as the facilitator, i.e. ‘keeper’.
Janice Cheong: It was a heartening experience to share with the teachers in Lovea School about Circle Time. They were very open-minded and keen to learn another way to build relationships with their students because they have a heart for their students and they treasure their relationships with them. I also had a chance to learn more about why they chose to be teachers and what it’s like to be teachers in Cambodia.
Janice Tay: One new thing I did this trip was to preach a sermon at New Living Hope Centre during a Youth Christmas Outreach event. It was something I dreaded doing but I am glad that I was able to use the preaching skills I learned in seminary to serve God.
Ng San San: I’ve always been averse to children. Cambodian children, however, are strangely endearing. Always thankful and respectful, they deserve the multitude of life choices that we often take for granted. During this trip, I found myself wondering what lies ahead for these children after a few years of mandatory schooling.
Park Tarn: The most memorable thing for me wasn’t the beauty of Cambodia. It wasn’t the sunrises or the sunsets. It wasn’t the scenery or the grandeur of Angkor Wat. Breathtaking as all these may be, what touched me was the little conversations we, the trippers, had. The way everyone took care of each other. The smiles on the children. In the photo, all it took was a little yellow balloon to reach across that doorway and connect with the children there. I am glad I was there to witness it all.
Sarah Chan: There is always a warm sense of unity when we meet fellow brothers and sisters in Christ – even if we are from different countries and speak different languages. I am thankful for the joy of serving the Lord alongside some very encouraging local Christians to share the simple but powerful Christmas story!
Sherlyn Ong: Having met such a caring, fun and cohesive team truly reflects just how gracious the Lord is! I am so thankful that we were all able to work well together, despite our differences, to serve God and bless the people in Lovea and Peam. Kudos to Janice and Park for planning this trip so well and San San for capturing all our moments.
Tom and Matthew Chan: How beautiful the feet that bring good news! Truly blessed to have Matthew and I join in the mission trip to see firsthand the sowing of love and life into Lovea Village. #loveofChrist# #GodlovesCambodia#
Thank you for reading our blog. We hope to have you come on board next year!