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Forrest and Jennifer McPhail

Status: On the Field

Location: Asia
Field: Cambodia
Ministry: Church Planting


The McPhails' burden is to help start and encourage strong Bible-believing indigenous churches by assisting Cambodian believers and foreign missionaries pursuing these goals. 

Their family arrived with a burden for pioneer church planting in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, in the fall of 2000. In the fall of 2002, the Lord led them to begin work in Pursat province. 

Pursat is a western-central province with mostly rice paddies to the east and mountains to the west. Its 450,000 people are almost entirely unevangelized. The city of Pursat has a population of about 70,000. It appears that the McPhails are the first foreign missionaries to ever have lived and labored in that province. They have been privileged to have several families of missionaries co-labor with them in this ministry. 

By the end of 2006, the Lord had given them the joy of leading a number of people to Christ. The Inheritance in Christ Church in Pursat city has continued in the Lord.  In 2010 two deacons were elected to serve at ICC. One of these was ordained and asked to become the pastor in 2011. ICC was now a fully indigenous ministry.

The McPhails relocated to the northeastern province of Oddar Meanchey, bordering Thailand, in 2014. Oddar Meanchey was still under the direct political control of the remaining Khmer Rouge forces until 2005. Since then the area there, which was little more than wilderness and a constant war zone for decades, has been rapidly developing. Once again, the Lord gave them the privilege of laboring where foreign missionaries never lived.

While living in the small city of Samroang, they sought to ground the few existing groups of professed believers there in the Gospel and disciple men as God opened doors, which He did.

Ongoing health issues forced the McPhails to reconsider their modus operandi. The Lord led them to pray about coming alongside other missionaries who are pursuing the same goals of ministry. In August 2016, the McPhails began laboring alongside other missionaries in the Svay Rieng province. Svay Rieng borders Vietnam in southeastern Cambodia.

God has begun to work in Cambodia, and the Lord has been raising up laborers for this harvest field, but this is still a pioneer work. There are precious few qualified Cambodian pastors, and churches are usually quite small. A movement of indigenous Cambodian churches is still in the future, but the seed of the Gospel is being sown like never before! 

The McPhails have been blessed by opportunity to serve the Khmer/Cambodian people via multiple avenues of ministry online, especially Sermon Audio, Facebook, and SoundCloud. They have also had radio ministries while serving in Pursat and Svay Rieng. Writing and publishing tracts has been a part of their team’s ministry also. 

The Cambodian pastor experienced some difficult trials and fell away from the Lord. This caused the McPhails to move back to Pursat province in 2018 to assist the congregation there alongside other missionary co-workers.

In 2018, the McPhails began serving as GFA's Regional Director for Asia, Australia, and Oceania. The McPhails continue to live in Cambodia and serve the Lord as they are able, but their primary ministry is now missionary care of GFA’s missionaries in their region. 

This includes much correspondence, field visits, counseling, and administration. They are grateful to be able to continue in ministry in Cambodia on some level while also serving their co-laborers in the Gospel in Asia and the Pacific.

To view Forrest and Jennifer McPhail's photo gallery, click the picture below.