First All-Vietnamese YSA Conference Held in Southeast Asia

Contributed By Elder Richard Verhaaren, Church News contributor

  • 14 July 2014

Vietnamese young single adults take notes and prepare for the day's events during the first all-Vietnamese YSA conference in Southeast Asia.  Photo by Richard Verhaaren.

Article Highlights

  • More than 90 young single adults attended the first all-Vietnamese YSA conference, held in Cambodia in June 2014.

"We are happy that [the Vietnamese young single adults] were willing to make the sacrifices necessary to travel and participate in this event. They have great faith and enthusiasm for the gospel.” —President David C. Moon of the Cambodia Phnom Penh Mission

A short 10 months ago, Le Huu Vuong, who grew up 120 miles north of Hanoi, Vietnam, joined the Church. He had not envisioned that 10 months later he would be participating in a historic event, the first all-Vietnamese young single adult (YSA) conference held in Southeast Asia.

The three-day conference took place in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, where just a month earlier, the first two Cambodian stakes were formed (read about it in this Church News article).

When asked how he felt about the Church, Vuong replied, “The feeling I had attending church was the same as when my mother gave me a hug—so I knew the Church was good. I am so happy to be here.”

The conference began with an evening dinner prepared by local members, followed by a welcome meeting conducted by the mission president of the Cambodia Phnom Penh Mission, President David C. Moon, and his wife, Sister Kathryn Moon.

The theme for the conference, “Shine Your Light,” was introduced and each member received a YSA conference T-shirt with an emblem representing the theme. Brother Voung did the artwork and design for the emblem.

Brother Vuong had flown from Hanoi with other Vietnamese YSAs to Ho Chi Minh City, where they gathered with more YSAs. From there the group traveled by bus to Phnom Penh, where they were met by Vietnamese YSAs from the three Phnom Penh Vietnamese branches.

Everyone was excited and grateful to be part of the scheduled conference. More than 90 individuals participated in the conference.

President Moon displays the “Shine Your Light” T-shirt given to conference attendees as Brother Voung, who did the artwork, explains the design and conference theme. Photo by Richard Verhaaren.

The three-day YSA conference began with an evening dinner prepared by local members. Photo by Richard Verhaaren.

Five YSAs jumped rope at the same time during the YSA conference in Cambodia. Photo by Richard Verhaaren.

Young single adults participate in stick dancing at a YSA conference in Cambodia. Photo by Richard Verhaaren.

Young single adults compete in an egg-rolling championship during a YSA conference in Cambodia. Photo by Richard Verhaaren.

Young single adults get to know each other in a speed-dating activity during a YSA conference in Cambodia. Photo by Richard Verhaaren.

Workshops and inspirational instruction occupied Friday’s morning sessions, and the afternoon was filled with games, dancing, and socializing. The Saturday closing session was a devotional and testimony meeting. During the conference friendships quickly formed and testimonies were strengthened.

President Moon noted that these YSAs “will be our future fathers, mothers, and leaders of the Church in Vietnam. We are happy that they were willing to make the sacrifices necessary to travel and participate in this event. They have great faith and enthusiasm for the gospel.”

Brother Vuong and many others expressed their appreciation for the conference and the opportunity to meet so many Vietnamese Church members. “In two more months I will be able to become a missionary,” Brother Voung said. “And this conference has added to my determination to be ready for the call.”