Why are there so many missionaries in Battambang?

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giblet
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Why are there so many missionaries in Battambang?

Post by giblet » Thu Jul 10, 2014 9:41 pm

It seems like there are a lot of missionaries in Battambang, of many different denominations. Is there something particular about Battambang that attracts missionaries?
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Re: Why are there so many missionaries in Battambang?

Post by Cowshed Cowboy » Thu Jul 10, 2014 11:27 pm

giblet wrote:It seems like there are a lot of missionaries in Battambang, of many different denominations. Is there something particular about Battambang that attracts missionaries?
I know what you mean Giblet, I spent a couple of weeks there for the first time on my recent trip. On several occasions conversations in cafés struck up around me between strangers revealed both parties were involved in some form of religious mission. I didn't need to listen in because it seemed the volume of conversation was such that we were all meant to hear about their mission and the good they were doing. The other big thing I encountered without initially realising it was that a sizeable number of restaurants or cafés were run by religious/NGO organisations. I thought PP was the home of the NGO/Religious organisations but I was more conscious of it in both Battambang and Siem Riep.

Could I hazard a guess that perhaps the rural nature of Battambang makes it cheaper to set up an operation and live, and the poverty is more acute therefore there is more chance of converting people, and being a force for good in the missionaries eyes.
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Re: Why are there so many missionaries in Battambang?

Post by StroppyChops » Thu Jul 10, 2014 11:42 pm

Cowshed Cowboy wrote:Could I hazard a guess that perhaps the rural nature of Battambang makes it cheaper to set up an operation and live, and the poverty is more acute therefore there is more chance of converting people, and being a force for good in the missionaries eyes.
Probably right on the money.
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Re: Why are there so many missionaries in Battambang?

Post by giblet » Thu Jul 10, 2014 11:50 pm

I guess I meant that it seems like there's a higher proportion of expats in Battambang doing missionary work; it seems like most of the cafes and restaurants are affiliated with one religious group or another. What's odd is that many of them seem to hide the affiliation, which I don't understand.
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Re: Why are there so many missionaries in Battambang?

Post by StroppyChops » Thu Jul 10, 2014 11:57 pm

Someone posed a question a while back, I don't remember on which forum, about what business you'd put $10k into around Russian Market. After a lot of secular discussion, the consensus of long termers seemed to be to open a Christian coffee shop, regardless of your beliefs. This was a really interesting outcome and I've pondered it since. Must be tied into the tourist demographic in some way, and there ARE a couple of Christian business in the area that don't advertise their theological stance. A personal favourite offers great mexican food - they don't hide their beliefs, but they don't in any way advertise them either. Having faced some interesting hostility/scrutiny here and elsewhere on my faith, approach, motivations, I can understand faith-based organisations that can't be bothered publicising their perspective. It tends to attract 90% frothy/drooling rant - especially from expats who wouldn't p!ss on someone on fire as that would interfere with their destiny. I'm not sure if what you're seeing is "hiding the faith" or just not "putting it out there for public attack" - after all, you're aware of who/what they are.
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Re: Why are there so many missionaries in Battambang?

Post by giblet » Fri Jul 11, 2014 12:27 am

I was going to write something more detailed, but then I remembered that it's entirely likely that the person I am talking about will read this! I talked to someone in Battambang about the missionaries and about one denomination in particular. This person told me a lot about their business but didn't mention that they were part of the denomination we were discussing and the business was religious. It was really odd! When I later found out that they were of this particular religion, I felt like I had been lied to by omission.
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Re: Why are there so many missionaries in Battambang?

Post by StroppyChops » Fri Jul 11, 2014 12:40 am

Yeah... odd, that. I feel the same way when I've just been tossed to the lions, and then someone (no-one here) quietly comes out of the woodwork and tells me they believe what I believe. Always happy to chat with 'em, but if you ain't living it, you can't be talkin' it.
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Re: Why are there so many missionaries in Battambang?

Post by Cowshed Cowboy » Fri Jul 11, 2014 4:16 am

giblet wrote:I guess I meant that it seems like there's a higher proportion of expats in Battambang doing missionary work; it seems like most of the cafes and restaurants are affiliated with one religious group or another. What's odd is that many of them seem to hide the affiliation, which I don't understand.
Seems understandable to me, they recognise that not everyone might appreciate what they are doing and therefore the business will suffer. I don't support any religion so I was a bit annoyed at myself when I realised I'd inadvertently put some of my custom to a business that was a front for a religious organisation. In fairness the venue I went in had a write up in the menu but I missed it going straight for the grub and since I'd already ordered it would have been wrong to cancel.

I'm not 100% ethical in researching the businesses I spend in but when it's obvious and I disagree with it I'd rather not do it.
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Re: Why are there so many missionaries in Battambang?

Post by Sailorman » Fri Jul 11, 2014 6:27 am

God Fobbers

" I wouldn't belong to any religion that would allow me to be a member."
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Re: Why are there so many missionaries in Battambang?

Post by vladimir » Fri Jul 11, 2014 7:07 am

Battambang: rural = ignorant, easy prey.(pray?)

One thing I also noticed in Battambang was the number of NGO white lesbians hanging out with their teenage Khmer partners at Black Rose.

Should sexual harassment claims be only limited to men?
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