Apostolic Vicariate of Phnom PenhDaily News

A Catholic youth’s perspective of life

The body needs day-to-day food to sustain itself. Faith too needs to be​nourished with concrete instructions, formation and guidance in order for spiritual life to grow in a right way.  A Catholic youth, Choeurng Minh Heav, from St. Joseph’s Church in Phsar Toich, said: “The one who guides me to​first know God, the Church and love is my dear grandmother.”

The youth is from village 16, Sangkat Srachok, Daun Penh district of Phnom Penh. He is the elder son. With a sad expression on his face, he said: “I was separated from my parents since I was a child. Since they were divorced they now have new families respectively and I was raised by my​grandmother since a child until now. I received baptism as a child at the church in Phsar Toich and received instructions on the essence of the faith for a period of seven years. Then I was entitled to receive Holy Communion. I thank my grandmother  for guiding me to know God, because I have much warmth when I am unhappy. I can pray and there is a Church that leads me to know many nice persons. The Catholic faithful keeps encouraging one another, hence I am not afraid.”

Minh Heav is an active youth in Church affairs such as at serving at the Altar, a member of the choir, the youth group, a Catechist and a volunteer.  

The 23-year-old added: “I acknowledge that the Church in Cambodia has made much progress. However, there is still a lack of human resources, especially those who proclaim the gospels. That’s why if the new generation of the faithful are not interested in it, in future we may lose the Catholics. Sometimes, each one of us is busy in business and earning money.  There is hardly time to take a rest, but please do not forget who you are ?  Who  our God is? Spare a little time for God. You do not lose anything but will gain a lot especially when you attend Mass,” said Minh Heav.

Minh Heav completed his studies in the Beauty Salon skills at the​organization of our un Sourire d’Enfant (PSE) in 2015. He is currently​working in Phnom Penh as a beautician.

The youth added: “ I encourage all brothers and sisters, please do not feel you are hopeless in life. You have to struggle to find a way to learn and especially do not overlook God because He is part of hope and firmness in our life. If we do not have anyone to be with us,  there is God whom we can speak to, ask for hope and to dwell in us all the time. Moreover, God does not give up on us.”

With love for life and a desire to share, Minh Heav volunteered to help serve the Church in China through the group of Jesus for Youth for one year in early December 2018. The youth hopes that carrying out the mission in that country can make him learn to understand more about the faith, protocols in arranging programmes and the proclaiming the gospel in order to  share it with his parish after he returns.