Then the ones who pleased the Lord will ask, "When did we give you something to eat or drink? When did we welcome you as a stranger or give you clothes to wear or visit you while you were sick or in jail?"
The King will answer, "Whenever you did it for any of my people, no matter how unimportant they seemed, you did it for me." .......Matthew 25

Sunday, December 16, 2007

O Ta Saeng

We have visited O Ta Saeng twice. The first time was in March 2007 after the commissioning of the Ta Peuv village school. The second time, during the most recent trip in November.

O Ta Saeng is a sizeable village of about 175 families with 177 children. It lay significantly south of Ta Prot and Chhom Trach, but within the Kpg Cham province. Once again we were faced with long stretches of pot-holed muddy tracks, this time with a narrow, rickety wooden bridge.

The village had made a request for a 3 class-room school as the parents had been very concerned about their young children traveling the 2kms to the nearest school. Those who do make the long commute are often too tired to really attend school. The track to the school is often flooded and treacherous and they have lost a few children already. The proposed school is also intended to
support an adjacent village Neang Leung with about 80 families.

It is anticipated the proposed school will cost approximate USD15-18K to construct and outfit in addition to the introduction of a bore-hole well. The villagers had already set aside a piece of land measuring approximately 20 x 80m.

I have to confess to have been more than a bit reluctant to commit. Not because O Ta Saeng was undeserving of the support, but because I (being of little faith) wasn't confident about raising the required sum. We had already raised approximately USD20K for the last 2 schools and I was worried about donor fatigue. I could see a target of about USD5-10K being reached, but USD18K was a little bit off the scale. I had a discussion with Esther about this and proposed that if we can find another church to co-sponsor the school, that would make the target more realizable. She agreed. We departed Cambodia on that understanding, and left it in God's hands.

What an absolutely joy it was to receive her typically cryptic email on 12/12 about a member of the Alor Star Methodist church who pledged USD10K for the school. Plus the news that the village headman had accepted Christ!

So God has made His position quite clear. And the ball, without doubt, has been place firmly back in my court.

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