Southeast Asia Nazarene Bible College dedicated its first church plant to the Cambodian community in South Korea 27 January. The new church is made up of 12 SEANBC students and would not have been possible without the help of Cheonan Love Church.
Love Church is an SEANBC extension center that ministers to people from Cambodia who live and work in Korea. Senior Pastor Jang Seok Hoon is a Cambodian immigrant himself, and he trains the students for future ministry to the Cambodian people.
Korea Nazarene University President Im Seung An preached at the opening ceremony. He was joined by missions leader Yun Tea Young and local pastor Jeon Gwang Don, who gave the benediction.
Like the nation of Cambodia itself, the SEANBC Cambodia extension center has known great difficulty. It was not until 2011 when missionaries Rolf and Deb Kleinfeld came to the area that the vision of a Cambodian wing of a Bible college was realized. Today, 120 students attend classes at the Cambodian extension of SEANBC, most of whom are bivocational ministers. SEANBC graduates have planted 64 churches in Cambodia and now one in South Korea.
According to government reports, there are 30,000 Cambodians in South Korea. After finishing his theological education in Korea, Hoon met Gu Sung Church of the Nazarene Pastor Im Sung Bin. Together they founded the Cheonan Love Church in 2011.
While missionary Bill Kwon serves as SEANBC president, the Cambodian extension itself is under the leadership of National Director Ko Jacob, and Hoon serves as main lecturer. An online lecture series is currently being developed. Students who finish 24 courses will be granted a Diploma of Ministry, one of the requirements for ordination in the Church of the Nazarene.
“The Cambodia extension center in Korea was possible because of the prayers and contributions of Gu Seong Church, Pastor Seo Seong Yong, and Im Seong Bin,” Hoon said.
Hoon and the rest of the ministers at SEANBC are thankful for those who have worked to make this possible and also acknowledge the importance of God's grace throughout the process.