Tour Updates

Day 12

Picture of Alexandra Rice
Day 12
by Alexandra Rice - Saturday, 17 December 2016, 3:52 AM

Day 12

The long awaited day to visit Salla Lavala has arrived. We were all very excited and some of us somewhat nervous in the lead up to the day, but the amazingly warm welcome we were greeted by upon arrival at the school, after an hours tuk tuk ride in peak hour traffic, banished any and all apprehensions of what was in store. We were swamped by children instantaneously as soon as we departed the tuk tuks and were lead into the school where we briefly mingled with the kids before joining them in their classes and cleaning various structures in the school. We were all blown away by how happy, generous and bubbly all the kids were especially when we joined in a hard fought game of hockey with one of the classes. The time we spent there flew by but before our departure the kids sang a traditional Cambodian song and presented us each with a krama as a token of their appreciation. In return we sang a faultless rendition of 'Power of Your Love' before saying our goodbyes. 

From Lavalla, we made our way to a cafe to hear an insightful and eye opening presentation from Sister Helene about the tragedy of human trafficking which is prevalent in Cambodia, and the good works of Horizons which work to give victims a second chance at life through assisting them in completing their schooling and training to be able to work in hotel business environments. We were all very moved by the presentation and it further conveyed the social injustice of which Cambodia is so abundant and put into perspective the poverty and hardship we have been witness to over the past 2 weeks. 

Tonight we experienced a taste of the adversity that the children we became so close with today, experience every day, during our dinner experience at Dine in the Dark, by having one of our senses completely cut off, being immersed in pitch black while eating our dinner. The struggle to identify what was on our plates and disconcerting feeling of not being able to see, exemplified what it would like to have a disability, especially one hindering such a major sense as that of sight. Today was another eye opening day for all of us, we are sad that our amazing journey is very near to its end, but are all so appreciative of the insight and experiences we have gained from it. 

Darcy Crettenden on behalf of Marist Solidarity Mission in Cambodia. 


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Re: Day 12
by Andrew Crettenden - Saturday, 17 December 2016, 8:01 AM

Thanks Darc, another life changing day for you all in that amazing community of Cambodia.  I can only imagine it will have a profound impact on all of you.

This time tomorrow your families back here will be preparing to descend on Tulla to welcome you all home (with great excitement I reckon!).  Thanks to all of you pilgrims on sharing your immersion with us each day on these blogs, the insight, compassion and maturity you have all displyed in your writing is a measure of the outstanding people you are.

Congratulations on everything you have learned from and shared with the people of Cambodia.

Safe travels home and see you tomorrow


Picture of Jerome Richards
Re: Day 12
by Jerome Richards - Saturday, 17 December 2016, 8:04 AM

Thanks Darcy for the insightful blog, we cant believe you are all still having such amazing experiences right up to the last day - I hope you guys dont find the transition back home too difficult after such a roller coaster of a journey.

Enjoy your last lunch at Jomo Bakery!

Looking forward to seeing you all tomorrow, safe travels.


Picture of Sarah Pyle
Re: Day 12
by Sarah Pyle - Saturday, 17 December 2016, 8:47 AM

What an awesome way to finish your time in Cambodia with that day.  Sister Helene's message is so relevant and in the world we live in, in australia, we often don't realise that Human Trafficking is so prevalent worldwide. It was lovely to hear you speak about your day at Salla Lavalla and it really is a privilege to spend the day there with such inspiring people.

Have a safe trip home but as you wake up for our last day allow the immersion you have had to embed itself on your hearts.  Allow everything you have seen, felt and experienced to guide you in the future as you now possess a knowledge of the day to day reality of the world for so many.

Akun pilgrims for allowing us to be apart of this journey with you through the blog.

God Bless,

Ms Pyle

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Re: Day 12
by Adriano Di Prato - Saturday, 17 December 2016, 9:57 AM

Thank you Darcy on sharing this latest insight into your collective experience on the Cambodia Immersion.

You have been able to beautifully articulate the contrasts that the people of Cambodia encounter on a daily basis. Injustice is real, but so is hope. 

The presence of the Marcellin pilgrims has provided the local people with a hope that people do care, that they do love and that everyone is worthy. 

Thank you so much for sharing your journey with us all back in Australia. I'm confident that this experience has exposed you all to Jesus' call of love, compassion and forgiveness. 

When it seems hopeless, God's messages about our future hope can deeply encourage us. Proverbs 24:14 "Know that wisdom is such to your soul; if you find it, there will be a future, and your hope will not be cut off."

I wish you all a safe return home to your families and I very much look forward to hearing about your individual stories.

God bless.

Warm regards,
Picture of Carolyn Young
Re: Day 12
by Carolyn Young - Saturday, 17 December 2016, 12:42 PM

Dear All,

I am sure you all sung with gusto and that leaving Salla Lavalla left you both joyous and sad to say goodbye. I cannot believe that your pilgrimage is nearly over and I wish you a safe journey home. I am sorry that I cannot be at the airport to greet you (I have a family birthday - the normality of home will no doubt take a while for you to get used to) and can't wait to speak with you all next year. Go gently when you get home; speak with one another often and talk to your parents as you can  - they will want to know how you are. Congratulations on the way you have challenged yourself and cared for others!!!

With every best wish for a happy and a holy Christmas!

Carolyn Young