From March 9-16, 2013 the Lutheran Hour Ministries Asia Regional Director, Mrs. Gunya Na Thalang; the Europe Regional Director, Rev. Peter Kirby; the 8 Lutheran Hour Ministry country directors from Asia and 3 directors from Europe participated in their annual regional workshop. They received updates about the ministry in each country, shared ideas with each other and received helpful information from a special guest speaker. This year’s workshop was held in Phnom Penh, Cambodia.
Although Rev. Dr. Douglas Rutt, Director of the International Division, was unable to join the workshop, he gave greetings and encouragement to the group via a Skype video conference call and LCMS missionary Rev. Dr. Fungchatou Lo provided the opening devotion.
The guest speaker was Mr. Erik Lai. Erik is currently the General Manager of Glad Sounds, a leading Christian books and music distributor and chain store in Malaysia. Glad Sounds, a ministry of the Lutheran Church in Malaysia, owns and operates 10 retail stores in major cities throughout the country.
Erik did 10 presentations about topics related to using media in mission, how to communicate effectively, ideas for funding the ministry and leadership qualities. The information that Erik shared with the country directors was very practical and helpful. The country directors are confident that they will be able to adapt it to their different ministry situations.
In addition to the meetings, the workshop participants also had the opportunity to visit some historical sites. They saw the Killing Fields and Toul Sleng prison, where many people were incarcerated during the Pol Pot regime. The group also made a trip to Siem Reap, where they explored Ankor Wat.
The LHM Thailand director arrived in Cambodia one day earlier than the others, so that she could help with the preparations for the workshop. Mr. Phin Naro and his staff did a very good job of organizing the program for the week and everything went very smoothly. All the country directors enjoyed seeing ministry in action, watching the puppet show and film, visiting the Cambodia ministry center, meeting the staff and the warm hospitality of the Cambodian people.
We could tell that God’s Spirit was blessing our time together during the workshop. By God’s grace the country directors were able to gain new ministry ideas, build closer relationships with each other and learn about the culture and people of Cambodia. We thank God for giving us a good week and we look forward to next year’s regional workshop.