Early in December we were visited by Brother Mark, Father Pius, Alison and 9 boys from Marist College Ashgrove. The boys were able to share in the life of the local community and helped in the work of the local Brothers. The children of Pailin especially enjoyed the company of these young Australians. We look forward to the return of students from this Queensland, Australia school in 2012.
28 Catholic university students from Singapore came to Pailin to help in the programs being run by the Marist Brothers in Pailin. The group taught English in a number of locations; entertained the young people with a variety of activities and found themselves moved by the work being done here and the circumstances of the young people they met.
Our friends from France visited us again this year. Led by Brother Bernard, Laurant, Isabelle and Valerie, the group had a chance to visit our works in Pailin and took a group of children to visit the waterfalls. On the evening of the 20th December they joined with the local community in celebrating Christmas. We thank the group for their ongoing support of the Marist Brothers projects here in Pailin. We especially thank them for the kind gift of 6 laptop computers which we are using to teach English to our children.
As we have done in the years we have been in Pailin we celebrated Christmas with our students. This year we were joined in this celebration by a group of students and staff from France. More than 300 students gathered at the Pastoral centre for this occasion. Along with some food and a gift for each student the students entertained each other with dancing and singing.
Christmas Liturgy and Parish Gathering
The Parish community gathered on Christmas day and celebrated together in the function area of the Church. A meal was prepared for all present and a happy day of fun and games was had by all. Thanks to Brother Francis and Sister Sol for the organisation.
Brother Terry from Australia Visits
During December we had a visit from Brother Terry Orrell from Australia. Br Terry was on his way home to Perth, Australia after attending a course in Rome. He was a very welcome guest and he assisted us by teaching some classes of English to a group of Policemen and Women who started learning with us in December 2011.
Brother Bernhard to Kompong Cham
At the end of December we were sad to say goodbye to our Brother Bernhard. After 4 and half years together the Brothers were sorry that this move became necessary. Brother is going first to Kompong Cham and then to the Cambodian province of Mondulkiri. The Brothers, the children and the Catholic Parish wish him well in his new mission and remind him that he is welcome to return. The Brothers will welcome Brother Gilbert who will come to Pailin during the coming year.