Associate City Mobilizer
Besides being married to Darrell’s soul mate, Susan, they are the adoring parents of four adult children and three grandchildren all of which are the most precocious. After graduating from John Glenn High School in New Concord, Ohio Darrell served in the U.S. Air Force during which time he gave his life to the Lord Jesus and soon after fellowshipped and was discipled by the Navigators, served with Young Life during his college/University years and went on obtain an M.Div. at Gordon Conwell Theological Seminary.
It was during the daily mission’s prayer meetings on campus that Darrell leaned about wonderful and disturbing events happening around the world as the Gospel thrusted forward into new areas. It was so clear: God loves the nations! The world is on God’s heart! So following graduation and marriage to one of life mind and heart, we began to sponsor Cambodian refugees, inviting them into our one-bedroom apartment before we had children. That led to a church plant among the former refugees in Lynn, Massachusetts. During this time, in order to gain insights into the Khmer mind and heart, we moved our family of four into a shared apartment with another Cambodian family. This was for one year.
The Cambodian Baptist Church is now in its fourth decade of meeting together. In 1993 – by this time our family included four children – the Caldwells moved back to Ohio for three years in order to prepare to move to Cambodia. By departure in July 1996, God had given us wonderful mission representatives in Eastern Mennonite Missions and support from many and various churches and friends. From then till return in 2008, we were privileged to see a church raised up in Phnom Penh, the Mennonite Church of Phnom Penh which now continues under the leadership of three elders.
During that time God also lead us to open university dormitories for poor students who needed housing. The first dorm for men eventually housed and provided two meals per day for 20 with a live-in coordinator. A second dorm for women provided the same for 12 women students. Thirdly, Darrell and two other brothers founded the group Christians for Social Justice in 2005 in order to advocate for Cambodians denied human rights or were falsely accused of crime.
Upon returning to the States in 2008 in order to focus on family and our youngest’s need for further education, we still had opportunities to return to Cambodia for seasons of service. For the school years 2014/15 and years 2016/17 Susan and I served as mentors, English and Biology teachers in Phnom Penh. Now our focus along with our home church responsibilities as deacons/deaconess is primarily to international students at the Muskingum University campus.
We lead a weekly conversation club of a great group of mostly Chinese students on campus each week and relate more personally to a Japanese student as his IFI friend. Finally, it is our joy to see local families befriend some of these students where they provide hospitality and ongoing relationship connections with their students on a regular basis. Please pray that these students will see and hear about the love of Jesus through our volunteers.