Cambodia Church Planters Brave New Territory
July 17, 2012
By Erik van’t Ende, C&MA Dutch colleague
Using their own offering money, Bunong Christians in Cambodia have traveled almost 100 km. to share the gospel with another ethnic group. In 2009, the believers, who are members of the Khmer Evangelical Churches (KEC, the C&MA in Cambodia) in Mondolkiri, noticed the Kraol living in Koh Nheik, near the provincial border between Mondolkiri and Ratanakiri. It is believed that there are about 5,000 Kraol people living in Cambodia.
Two of the Bunong churches (Lumpuk and Bread of Life, both in Busra town, Sen Monorom Province) felt the Lord calling them to visit the Kraol people to share with them the life-changing news about Jesus. There were no churches or Christians among the Kraol in this area.
Initially, the Bunong churches sent a group of about 10 people to help evangelize. Then, they chose two church planters to travel monthly back to the area—KEC worker Prum Sothea and Pastor Nhein Traery. Now the church planters go several times a month.
Currently, their primary focus is on evangelism. They have started a Bible study group with four believers, all of whom are Bunong. They also teach and evangelize at a local school and in Kraol homes. The church planters are purposely doing much gospel sowing before asking for a commitment; they desire to see entire Kraol families come to faith, not just one person.
In addition, since it will be the first church in this village, they want new believers to understand the gospel clearly before making a commitment to Christ. So far, there are not yet any Kraol believers, but one Kraol family is very close to making a decision to follow Jesus.
This church-planting effort is very much a work in progress. But there are many positive things that can be seen in this example. The Bunong churches looked for an area where there were no Christians to start a new work. It is an area of darkness where it said that evil spirits have many strongholds.
The KEC churches worked together and shared their offerings to reach a different ethnic group with the gospel. There is a long-term commitment to continue going to this distant area to help people clearly understand the good news.
What You Can Do
- Pray that God will open doors so that many Kraol and others in the Koh Nheik area will come to faith. Pray that the Lord will strengthen the church planters, protect them from the forces of evil, and help them to discern His perfect will.
- Join with the thousands of people that lift up the weekly Alliance prayer requests
- Make a donation to the Great Commission Fund and partner with Alliance workers, such as those in Cambodia, in bringing the good news to people trapped in spiritual darkness.
- Give to the GCF