Church Planting in Cambodia

Staff members learn to plant churches after JESUS film shows.

Tez Brooks

Since 1993, Cru in Cambodia has used the JESUS film to help spread the gospel to the Khmer people. For many years, they saw thousands of Cambodians turning to Christ after seeing the film and hearing the gospel for the first time in their mother tongue.

Yet they weren’t seeing an increase in Christian communities. By 2005, they realized something had to change.

CCC-Cambodia first began decades earlier. However, due to government opposition, they closed down after only one year. It wasn't until 1993 that they re-opened the ministry with a huge push on using the JESUS Film for spreading the gospel.  The JESUS film is a dramatization of the life of Jesus, taken word-for-word from the gospel of Luke. It is the most translated film in history, offered in over 1,100 languages, including Khmer.

The problem was that there was no local church established in many of these remote villages, so after a few months, the new Christians seemed to disappear. Persecution, pressure from family members and sheer isolation from other Christ-followers caused many young believers to return to Buddhism.

In order to help these new believers become grounded in their faith, the Cru staff realized they needed to be more strategic in making sure spiritual leaders were placed in these communities. As a result, CCC-Cambodia launched their Church Planting Movement (CPM) in 2007.

Since beginning the CPM strategy, they have seen positive increases in the number of new believers who stick with their newfound faith and continue to grow in their relationship with Jesus. CCC-Cambodia National Director, Touch Borin says, “Typically out of a group of about 400 who might pray to receive Christ, about 100 of those remain in the faith and help plant a new church in that area.”

In 2009, CCC-Cambodia saw 22 new house churches planted as a result of the training they provided for first-time pastors. These cell church leaders work all week as farmers yet make time to travel several kilometers to other villages in order to disciple multiple congregations.

Pray for the ministry of CCC-Cambodia and their Church Planting Movement as they train leaders to make disciple-making disciples, producing spiritual multiplication all around Cambodia.

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