On 29-Aug2014, some 14 potential and newly-appointed missionaries who had earlier submitted their applications with the Methodist Missions Society (MMS) graduated from a two-month intensive training programme.
The MMS has put in special effort over these couple of years to motivate, train and prepare Methodists in Singapore – MMS missionaries, and members of the Methodist churches – to serve in missions.
The training programme consists of modules designed to equip for effective ministry in the field. This includes a module on Methodist Essentials, where participants benefited from learning about Methodist heritage, doctrines, theology, spirituality, and disciplines. In the Spiritual Formation module, especially ‘Hearing God’, participants experienced greater intimacy with God, having been encouraged to set aside time daily to be in God’s presence.
Other important modules include global missions, cross-cultural dynamics and communications, indigenous church planting, practical ministry skills such as holistic counseling, homiletics, teaching and disciple-making. They were also blessed by the Leadership Development module, which touches on spiritual leadership, leadership multiplication, conflict management, leadership resilience and dangers.
Also, participants undertook a field trip to the Asian Civilizations Museum to familiarize themselves with various cultural worldviews and share their learnings. They were also required to be actively involved in a “Building Redemptive Bridges” project with people of the field that they would be serving in. Modules like Catholicism, with special reference to Timor Leste, and Buddhism, with special reference to Thailand and Cambodia, were included in the training programme.
The MMS deeply appreciates the dedication and service of Methodist pastors, missionaries, lay leaders, as well as a number of non-Methodist missionaries and ministers for their time and effort in teaching in the training programme.
In 2015, the MMS organised a series of missions courses open to members of the Methodist churches. In January 2015, almost 80 people turned up for the first one-day course entitled ‘Building Bridges with People of Different Religious Worldviews’, where Dr Jeanette Hui and Dr Ashok Kumar taught the key features of popular religions. Participants gave feedback that they benefited greatly from the course.
Most of the 25 participants in the ‘Bivocational Missions’ course were young Christian professionals, and were motivated by guerst speakders Mr Kua Wee Seng, Dr Tan Lai Yong and Mr Kenneth Bong’s testimonies of being both professionals and ministers in a cross-cultural content.
The ‘Missional Business’ seminar challenged emerging entrepreneurs to launch Christ-centred companies that not only make profit but also meet the physical and spiritual needs of the people they touch. The inspiring and challenging seminar drew 35 participants comprising emerging young entrepreneurs, experienced businessmen, and more. They key-note address by Dr Stanley Ling was followed by a forum with Mr Alvin Tan, Mr Ong Teong Hoon and the Reb Erick Tan – committed Christians experienced in missional business.
On 21 November, 15 participants graduated from the Kairos course jointly organized by the MMS and Simply Mobilizing. The Kairos course is a nine-session, interactive course on world Christian missions, looking at biblical, historical, strategic and cultural dimensions of missions.
Moving forward, with the guidance and help of the Holy Spirit, the MMS will continue to motivate and equip Methodists to serve in missions. To God be the glory!
The Rev Lee Shuit Kuin is Training Director at the MEthodist Missions Society (MMS).