Reaching Young Men

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Anyone who has done missions work in Cambodia knows that young men are a difficult demographic to reach. There is a void in the lives of many who have lost fathers to war and sickness, or who have been abandoned by parents and are spiritually orphaned. Without role models and positive mentors, boys grow up without learning what it means to be be husbands and fathers, how to respond to life's challenges, or how to think and plan strategically to care for their families. Discipline, teamwork, grace in the face of failure - these are traits that are not acquired for lack of an environment that values them.

One of the ways that In His Steps is compensating for this problem is by providing an outlet where young men can practice teamwork, grow in discipline, and learn good sportsmanship: our Gospel Community Church Saang soccer team! When paired with our ongoing Boys to Men group, the team is a great way to draw youth towards positive challenges and growth, both on and off the field. It is a venue not only for developing physical ability, but for discipleship and community-building.

Our team attending a sports seminar organized by the Evangelical Fellowship of Cambodia.

Our team attending a sports seminar organized by the Evangelical Fellowship of Cambodia.

Our team is made up of beginners, but already this season they have distinguished themselves with their practice ethic, fitness, and good attitudes, as well as many wins in the games they have played so far. They even placed second in a local tournament last month! We are so proud of each team member, not because of tallying wins and losses but because we see them working together, encouraging others, and doing their best. The lessons they are learning will prove valuable no matter where life leads them!

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Other Updates

  • Please keep founder/director Eric in your prayers as he and Ginny return to Thailand for several days next week for a follow-up check of his heart related to the emergency procedure he had in June.
  • Staff member Rhiannon has returned to Cambodia and is now in the process of readjusting to life and ministry while continuing her recovery. Please continue to keep her in prayer! 
  • Thank you for your continued intercession regarding Cambodia's election last week. There are still many concerns (read an insightful overview of the current situation here), but God is faithful and we are thankful that for the most part things are reasonably calm.

- In His Steps

June News

Visitors and Volunteers

During the spring and summer months we often host short-term teams and volunteers that come with a desire to serve Cambodia and bless the community here. In His Steps has been blessed with many friends from around the world, and have had visitors from places near and far: the U.S., Canada, Germany, Norway, Russia, Australia, New Zealand, Hong Kong, Singapore, and more!

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Last month, a friend of a friend came to Cambodia for two weeks, a volunteer from Russia. While visiting us Yulia got to experience ministry in Saang and help with our literacy program, English classes, visit our Sak Saum ministry, children’s programs, and youth group. She also spent time with the children in Father’s House, was a part of our church services, and built relationship with staff member Aly by “shadowing” her throughout each day. It was great for staff and those in our programs to meet this new friend, and judging from a recent email we think she enjoyed her time here as well:

“...I came back to Russia 2 weeks ago, [and] today I was able to share with my church about Cambodia and your beautiful ministry…I would like one more time to thank you for accepting me, for giving me chance to feel like a part of your family!!! I really felt this [and] I will be praying for you... your ministry, your people and Cambodia. Thank you very much.”
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Yulia is by no means the first visitor to mention feeling like part of the In His Steps family. Family is one of our highest values as a ministry, and each person working with us is loved and valued for who they are, no matter how long or short their time with us is. And sometimes, those who have come to visit find that God begins to stir a calling to ministry (whether in Cambodia or elsewhere). That’s what happened to Rhiannon, a former intern who has just come back from a visit home, this time as a full-fledged staff member. Read her most recent blog post here.

If you or your church/organization is interested volunteering with In His Steps in Cambodia, learn more on our outreach page!

Other News

  • Although Father’s Day is not a particularly recognized holiday in Cambodia, just like on Mothers’ Day our church chose to celebrate parents through songs, dramas, and a message of encouragement and exhortation. It was a sweet and meaningful service, with a fun children’s dance, a drama about forgiveness between generations, a great lesson from Ginny on the value and calling of fathers, and an original song written by boys in our Loaves and Fish/Father’s House programs (video below).
  • Since forming our very first Gospel Community Church Saang soccer team, we have been enjoying seeing young men in the church working hard to hone their skills and growing in team unity and sportsmanship. So far the GCCS team has won 3 out of 4 games this season!
  • Cambodia has a major election coming up next month. Please keep the nation in your prayers, that wisdom, truth, and justice would be the hallmarks of the entire election process.

- In His Steps