Operation Seasweep


“In order to truly help someone, we need to have our hearts broken,” Vinh Chung says. Vinh’s family was among thousands who fled communist Vietnam by boat in the late 1970s.

Vinh, nine immediate and eight extended relatives, and 75 others crammed themselves into a boat to find safe haven in another country. They reached Malaysia, but were turned away and left floating aimlessly in the South China Sea.

Vinh’s parents considered the unimaginable: throwing their children overboard rather than watching them die of starvation and dehydration. But God had a different plan.

World Vision rescued all 93 people during Operation Seasweep. Seasweep was the first international rescue ship to provide food and medical care to refugees. (In the photo, Vinh is the 4-year-old boy near the center, looking up to the right.)

Once a poor refugee, Vinh Chung is now a successful, Harvard-educated doctor. He built a life for his family in the U.S. through hard work and faith in God. Now he’s working with World Vision to help others in dire circumstances.

Vinh sees himself as one to whom much has been given and of whom much is expected. So he sows back into the cycle of generosity that has allowed his family to flourish.

Vinh and his wife, Leisle, traveled to Cambodia in November 2012 to see World Vision’s child protection work firsthand. They were following God’s call to help protect exploited children.

“In order to truly help someone, we need to have our hearts broken,” Vinh says.

Photo ©1979 World Vision, Kenny Waters


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