On Sunday, the 13th of July 2014, six children from OBV Cambodia received the sacrament of Baptism at Saint Joseph Church in Pnom Penh, Cambodia. Since they had wanted to be baptized for a long time now, the girls attended the religious classes regularly and whole-heartedly. But, while making a list of those who would be baptized, none of them could fulfill the necessary legal conditions. The ones who had Christian parents did not keep their faith, and for the ones with Buddhist parents, a longer test phase was needed (usually until the age of eighteen). Father Bruno, the pastor of the community there, is a French priest, who is strict about keeping faith. That is why he had to think over the OBV children's cases thoroughly.
Father Bruno and children of OBV house.
Summer comes, the children in OBV Vietnam can leave school works aside to participate in Summer activities.
They are taught English by Miss Diễm Vân who is a volunteered teacher coming from the USA. She works very hard in dividing class into different levels to correctly match with the children's ages and their comprehension.
The English teacher and children are meeting for introduction
On the occasion of return of Dad Thong celebrating the 10th anniversary of his ordination, Dad and the OBV (One Body Village) family had a vacation trip exciting, interesting and meaningful. The OBV family had secretly prepared a surprise gift for Dad and Aunt the past month. Therefore, the musical show was extravaganza taken place in the night.
Thu took the cigarette from the stranger and lit it. As she exhaled the smoke, she thought of what to say. Although the stranger did not seem interested, she was not discouraged. After all, she was accustomed to this at a young age.
Thu has met so many different people, but they were all similar. Those who uses their money to buy pleasure does not need to be polite to prostitues like Thu. Had they pitied children like her, they would not have come to places like these. Instead, they all came to purchase an evening of pleasure, to enjoy the bodies of unfortunate children no older than their own. There was no humanity, no dignity to speak of. In her eyes, all men were animals without a drop of decency. She didn't expect any courtesy, just money for food. That's all.
Dad! Where are you.... Mom! Where are you...
At nightfall, the street is transformed into an exciting and bustling scene. Many three-wheeled bikes, locally called tuktuk, lined the streets leading to TaMun Park. Along the roadside lie many bars and cafés, filled with the greetings of waitresses as they entertain their guests. Under the golden glow of the streetlamps, hordes of people from all over the world have gathered to enjoy the revelry. The street, an entire kilometer long, had every form of vice imaginable to experience; from drugs, to alcohol, to gambling, it offered any and all kinds of entertainment. However, the main attraction for many men who have came here was to engage the pleasures of the body, especially with underage children (including adolescents who were merely eight or nine years old), found virtually nowhere else in the world except... Cambodia.
- Hey! You... You... want go... Go...
Although Mother's Day had passed, in this article, I would like to talk about the combined sacrifice that Mom (Momma Nga) and Dad had for the children.
Momma Nga and Dad took photos as souvenirs with the OBV children.
The third Sunday of June was Father's Day. This year was a rarity because this time, Momma Nga and Dad were present in Vietnam; specifically, they came on this day to visit and to say goodbye to the children, and apparently, they wanted time to flow backwards so that they could be with the children longer.
Managing Sister and the children of OBV VN celebrate Father's Day
Dear Father, on this Sunday we celebrate all our fathers, for we know that our fathers are most deserving of this honor and respect.
Although you did not bring us into this world and nurtured us, we know that you have made many sacrifices and care deeply for all of us; you have extended your arms widely to envelop and embrace us into your heart. Father, we know that you work tirelessly day and night; when we hear that you barely sleep – at times merely resting yours eyes for a couple of hours at night – our hearts cannot help but ache for you!
Their innocent smiles when wearing new dresses
A five-year-old little girl lives with her father who works as a mechanic. Her parents had separated when she was one. Her mother could no longer endure her father's drunkenness and gambling habit so she left to go back to her village carrying with her an unborn child in her womb. Her mother works as a hired hand here and there scraping enough to support herself day by day as she lives in humiliation. As for the little girl, she lives with her father in a dilapidated and unfurnished rental unit. Her means of support is dependent on what her father brings home on that day from inflating and patching up tires for customers in the area. The little girl is five, but she doesn't get to go to school. She doesn't know any children songs or rhymes, nor does she have any toy. On a daily basis, she hangs around her father's auto shop; her toy is a rock or whatever else she might pick up.
Every year, Father's day is celebrated on the third Sunday of June. We don't know what to say to you to express our love for you. We just want to give you the poem so that you can know how much we love you.
Dad, you're my everything.
Life is still full of problems
Dear Dad, mom, uncles, aunts,
I don't want to leave OBV family but I have to leave because of my family's situation. My mom is too sick to work, my two sisters are too young. I have to come back home to help my mother and take care of my sisters.
Thank you for taking care of me. I wish I could come back with OBV family when my family's situation is better. I know I will be happy when I am here , but my mom and my sisters are miserable and I can't stand it.
I hope that dad, mom, uncles, aunts will understand me. At home I won't be happy as when I'm here but I'm the eldest, I have responsibility for my family.
I love OBV family.