The response to our current Alpha Courses is encouraging, both at LYnC (youths) on Saturday and the regular one on Wednesday evening. We are offering our friends and walk-ins an opportunity to explore the Christian message in the context of small group conversations and friendship. Christians can also choose to participate in this Course to clarify or refresh their faith. Being held in the city, it is convenient for office workers to pop in for dinner, hear the talk, get into small groups and leave by about 9.30 pm. For this and other reasons, we put in more effort to offer “home-cooked” meals. These always open up the hearts of our guests and incentivise everyone to participate in the dinner where the conversations begin every Alpha evening. This small group experience continues if they do join the Baptism and Membership (Confirmation) Courses and the Connect groups. This small group track complements the large group Worship Services.
We are also in the process of forming a Worship and Creative Arts Ministry, which includes music, dance, drama, audio-visual (sound) etc. It can help to give support for better coordination of the various teams, groups and activities at both the CNS and Nave. There are Cathedral-wide events which can be better organised and supported. As creative arts are also used for evangelism and missions, this will be another aspect for this ministry to look into.
One of our LYnC leaders and staff serving at CITY Community Services, Kenneth Ernest has started the 6-month Youth Pastor Discipleship Training Course conducted by YWAM Singapore. Joshua, who has served a year in a southeast Asian city, is also participating in the Course. Do pray for them as we continue to train and prepare those who are considering serving in the full-time ministry for the longer term.
According to statistics, we have at least 1 million followers of Christ in this city. As most of them are active in their faith, try to imagine the amount of Christian or faith-inspired activities daily and weekly. I have learned long ago that when it comes to the Lord’s work, release and encourage rather than control will bear much fruit in the long run. This is also in keeping with how the world has changed these past 30 years with the advent of the Internet. We have progressed from communications through sound waves (radio), airwaves (TV), audio visual via storage (i.e tapes, movies, DVDs) to wireless digital. So what is so special about the Internet age? Isn’t wireless digital only another step of progress, a change in degree and not in kind?
One word - interactive. Radio, TV and movies involve only active participation of a few and make the majority passive consumers. But the computers and now, smartphones empower the individual to “create content.” Encyclopaedias are now almost obsolete with the advent of digital-pedia. We now have millions of writers, thinkers, speakers and so on, all creating their own connections and sub-groups. The exponential people to people connection and empowering of the individual to contribute actively means that traditional forms of centralised control, leadership and management are no longer the only ways to get things done, or the most efficient. In the Church, having both a unified and led vision (for the sake of unity, community and synergy) and an environment where individuals can thrive (for the sake of creativity, initiative and personal ownership) is vital. SAC herself has to navigate through some of these societal changes but as always, we know the Spirit is leading His Church.
Sister Judy Teo officially retires in July. She has served in the Cathedral for 27 years. Retirement is never an easy thing but I trust that in the church community, we can approach this differently for all the good reasons. Let’s continue to show our support and appreciation for our dear sister who has served us so well and will continue to do so in other ways.