The Lake Park United Methodist Church has been awarded a General Board of Global Ministries (GBGM) grant for Cambodian Leadership Development in the California-Nevada Annual Conference. The grant is an Asian American Language Ministries grant to provide leadership development trainings to the Cambodian United Methodist Churches.
The main purpose of the grant is to help make disciples of Christ for transformation of the world. The secondary purpose of the grant is to strengthen and empower Cambodian churches within the California-Nevada Annual Conference by offering trainings to pastors and laity. In addition, this grant will provide opportunities for fellowship and community building.
The trainings will focus on topics such as: United Methodist polity and history, United Methodist structure and governance, church finances, conducting church conference, United Methodist worship – communion, baptism, etc.
The first training will take place on May 11. This all day training will consist of three sessions: UMC History and Polity, Baptism and Communion. Paul Extrum-Fernandez will lead the training on United Methodist history and polity. The Rev. John Oda, Pastor at Lake Park UMC, will conduct the training on communion. The Rev. Sophany Chen, the Chairman of the Cambodian National Caucus, will offer the training on baptism. Sophany, a UMC Pastor from Long Beach in Southern California, said, "I am excited about the opportunity to participate in the training for the Cambodian Churches in California-Nevada." He added, "I look forward to being with my brothers and sisters of the Northern California in May, 2013." Subsequent training dates and topics are yet to be determined.
Chantha Yos, Conference Lay Minister at Bayside Cambodian Fellowship in Alameda has been active in helping to organize the trainings. She acknowledged, "This Cambodian Leadership Grant will enable the Cambodian communities to be more visible, more vocal and empowered."
Laddie Perez-Galang, the Western Jurisdiction Asian American Caucus Chair and Interethnic Chair, has also been one of the organizers of the trainings. She stated, "We are doing this to empower and equip the Cambodian American Churches of the California-Nevada Annual Conference so they can in turn help others."
For more information, contact the Rev. John Oda, Pastor, Lake Park UMC, (510) 220-8959,