A Poovong Potluck Party

A Poovong Potluck Party

“It was inspiring and humbling to listen to the stories of the growing church in Thailand that is spreading the message of God’s love and peace.”

This was the reaction of Leni Lousier, North Kildonan Mennonite Church Council Chair, after NKMC co-hosted a potluck celebration of Tom and Christine Poovong’s International Witness ministry in Thailand on April 13. Joining Tom Poovong at the event were Thailand pastors Khampen and Thippawan. They toured throughout Mennonite Church Canada during April, including a week in Manitoba.

North Kildonan and Vietnamese Mennonite Churches co-hosted the event. Pastors Khampen and Thippawan shared stories of their 40-year ministry in Thailand and the radical nature of their commitment to Christ in a largely Buddhist country. They currently relate to 56 small congregations—known as Mennonite Peace Houses—as part of a 10-year ministry with Tom and Christine. Together they formed the Friends of Grace Network. During their week in Manitoba the group expressed gratitude for the support they receive from MCM congregations, including Sargent Avenue and Elim Mennonite Churches.

Jeanette Hanson, Director of International Witness for MC Canada, found the event to be like a coming together of siblings that hadn't met before. “The energy that the Vietnamese congregation brought into connecting in various ways was infectious,” she says. “NKMC was so gracious and open in their hosting. It was a good recipe for an evening learning about the culture and ministry in Thailand. God met us there in a special way!”

Leni adds, “To hear how strong their faith is in spite of difficulties was a testament to the work the Poovongs and many others are undertaking. Good company, good food from different cultures, and heart-warming singing from the Vietnamese church made for a very worthwhile evening.”

Join us in giving thanks for the ministry of Tom and Christine Poovong in Thailand, shared with pastors Khampen and Thippawan and many others. To learn more about this ministry and to give financially to support it, see www.mennonitechurch.ca/thailand. Watch for more opportunities to connect with our International Witness ministries!