Van Zel and Cer Thlia Tial
Van Zel and Cer Thlia Tial arrived in High Point in the late spring of 2009. They grew up and were married in a town called Than Thang (which is about 24 miles north of Hahka, Chin, Burma). They fled Myanmar about 5 years ago. First Van Zel traveled to Malaysia and then his wife Cer Thlia Tial followed him down to the capital city, Koula Lamphur where they sought refugee status under the United Nations.
While in Malaysia Van Zel worked for Cambara Highland, a large agricultural enterprise that grew plants and shipped them to Europe and Singapore. Cer Thlia Tial worked as a waitress at a hamburger shop.
Van Zel was raised in a Christian family, attended church throughout his life. At age 15 he was baptized before he finished secondary school. His mother passed away 10 months ago from the stress and danger in the village. His brothers have all fled, one to Germany, another to Georgia, U.S., and a third is still in Malaysia. Only his father remains in their hometown, pray for his safety.
Cer Thlia Tial was orphaned in her teen years. Her mother passed away in 1994 and her father in 2001. She has three brothers who remain in the Chin state and seem to be relatively safe.
Last August Cer Thlia Tial gave birth to their son Chris Van Lian Cun. Van Zel works for Artistree in Kernersville making picture frames. The family resides in the Sadaf Apartments on Hamilton Street.