Your help is needed to continue our legacy

Dec 2009    

PHNOM PENH – It has been said that the most enduring ministry of the Methodist Church is with young people.

More than a century ago, missionaries opened the first Methodist schools in Singapore. For the past 12 years the Methodist School of Cambodia (MSC) has followed that tradition by providing quality education and sharing the Good News of Jesus Christ with students and their families.

The MSC opened in October 1997 with 15 children in kindergarten. The school now has more than 540 students enrolled in Kindergarten-1 (K-1) through Grade 9, with a waiting list of more than 100.

Since the beginning, the long-term vision for MSC has been to offer a complete educational curriculum through grade 12. This past March, work began to construct 10 additional classrooms in support of this vision.

The cost of this renovation is S$500,000. To date, individuals and churches have generously contributed S$268,000 (excluding loans). Your donations are urgently needed to close the gap and reach the final goal.

These are economically challenging times, but prayerfully consider this fact.

Out of a total population of 14 million, one-third of all Cambodians live below the international poverty line of US$1 (S$1.40) a day, and two-thirds subsist on US$2 or less each day. Providing quality education for children is more important than ever to help break the cycle of poverty.

Only with YOUR help can Singaporeans continue the Methodist legacy of building academically excellent schools grounded in Christian beliefs and values. Please send your donations to: The Methodist Church in Singapore, c/o MMS Executive Director, 70 Barker Road, #06-01, Singapore 309936. Kindly write on the back of your cheque “for Methodist School of Cambodia”.

Teresa Wilborn, the Methodist Missions Society’s Coordinator of Women’s Ministries – Cambodia, is a member of Aldersgate Methodist Church.

MMS partners KKMC to run drug rehab centre in China

I WAS FORTUNATE that the taxi unknowingly took my team up the mud track (three km) from Dai Lai village to the Faith Farm – a drug rehabilitation centre. The Faith Farm in China, established in April 2003, was a leprosy rehabilitation centre but vacant for many years.

I was pleasantly surprised to see a two-storey building with 16 rooms situated on a one-hectare piece of land in a quiet and peaceful environment on a mountain ridge. The land is leased to our ministry staff for RMB 500 (about S$100) annually for 30 years and is administered under the umbrella of a National Social Welfare/Crisis organisation.

The work in the farm and counselling services provided by our ministry staff at a local family clinic is well recognised by government officials and Christian communities in the city. This work was started and supported by Kampong Kapor Methodist Church for many years.

The residents are isolated from the city life. They live as a farming community growing mainly vegetables for their own consumption and catching fishes from their two big ponds. They hardly have meat except on special occasions.

They have to undergo a disciplined life in the farm for one-and-a-half years, attending devotion in the morning, working in the farm in the afternoon, and meeting for Bible study in the evening.

The Faith Farm is not just a place for ex-addicts to kick their habit. Through counselling and Bible teaching, their lives are also being changed.

Over the last five years, the farm has taken in 26 residents, many of whom have left after their one-and-a-half year stay and three have started their own families. Some remain in the farm to become full-time staff. Our ministry staff and residents are praying for funds to expand the farming to include husbandry projects like the rearing of pigs, chickens and goats so as to develop the residents’ personal worth and provide income and ownership.

Beginning next year, our ministry staff plan to create a half-way house in the city to provide vocation training to help residents transiting to normal lives. Please pray with us to get approval, funding and manpower to implement the project successfully.

Col (Retd) Quek Koh Eng is an Area Director of the Methodist Missions Society.


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