After 28 hours of travel, our entire team arrived on Cambodian soil with smiles on their faces and every last piece of luggage in tow (which, I might add, is nothing short of a miracle). We made it to the Green Pasture Inn before midnight and had 8 solid hours of rest before going to one of our favorite breakfast places, Java. With banana pancakes and French press coffee keeping our jet lag at bay, we began Immersion Day with a tour of the Palace. We ate a delicious lunch at Khmer Surin, followed by a quick meeting with Glenn Miles to hear about his work with Love 146 and other ministries in Southeast Asia.
The latter half of the day was more sobering. We visited both Tuol Sleng (S21) and the Killing Fields. Both of these places not only tell the story of the mass genocide that occurred in Cambodia in the recent past, but are also where so much of it occurred. Standing in the same place as so many who were killed under the Khmer Rouge regime is difficult. This was my second visit to both places, and all of us who have been there more than once agree: it never gets any easier. Other members of the group described our time at both places as “hard but so important,” “eye opening,” and “shocking, especially since it was so recent.” Although these things were difficult to absorb, many of us left wanting to learn more and felt a deep responsibility to let others know about this tragedy in Cambodia.Most importantly, our time at each of these places helped us to better understand the Cambodian people, their history, and their needs.
We ended the day with a sunset ride on the Mekong River. We enjoyed pizza, fellowship, and a birthday surprise. After a day of travel, we will begin our medical mission work and VBS in Poipet. Please pray that the Lord will be our mouthpiece, our hands, and our feet during our time serving our Cambodians friends.
Written by Caroline Dilbeck