Christians embody Scripture teachings in their lives
— Says Aldersgate Convention speaker
SINGAPORE Methodists will again gather around their Wesleyan heritage next month when the Rev Dr M. Robert Mulholland discusses the topic, “Shaped by the Word”, during the 2006 Aldersgate Convention from May 24 to 27.
This year’s Aldersgate Service will now be held at Barker Road Methodist Church instead of at Lee Kong Chian Auditorium, ACS (Barker Road), as had been announced previously. The Rev Dr Mulholland will preach at the May 24 service beginning at 7.45 pm.
This service, which is always held on the same date, regardless of when it falls during the week, commemorates the anniversary of John Wesley’s experience of assurance in 1738. The service, which promises to be rich in worship and music, will also include a presentation of long-service awards to pastors from the three Annual Conferences.
In addition to preaching at the Aldersgate Service, the Rev Dr Mulholland will deliver three evening public talks, also at Barker Road Methodist Church, on May 25, 26 and 27. Each talk will begin at 7.45 pm.
A leading exponent of “biblical spirituality”, he will offer a series of presentations on “The Word” for the evening talks. The talk on May 25 entitled “The Word: Became Text” explores how the church understands Scripture. God’s Word became text in a way that corresponds to the affirmation that the Word became flesh in Jesus Christ.
This is important to understand, according to the Rev Dr Mulholland, in light of the prevalent Enlightenment and postmodern ideas. There is an objective quality about the reading and hearing of the Word, not just some private, subjective experience open to anyone’s interpretation. As Christians, we do not merely read Scripture. It speaks to us.
The presentation on May 26, “The Word: A Place of Transforming Encounter with God”, will explore how Scripture is a place in which people can meet God in powerful, new and transforming ways.
The Rev Dr Mulholland believes that one of the principal roles of Scripture is to destroy or “deconstruct” our “conventional worlds” of perceptions, meanings and values, and summon us into a radically alternative “world”. In other words, the Word sometimes confronts us in those areas that need to change.
The last of the three evening talks on May 27, “The Word: Becomes Flesh in Us”, probes the “incarnational dimension” of Scripture. Christians do not just read and study Scripture, but embody its meaning in their lives.
Besides sound biblical teaching, the evening talks will include choir music and congregational singing, as well as opportunities for questions and answers.
The Rev Dr Mulholland, a United Methodist minister, is a professor at Asbury Theological Seminary in Kentucky.
The Rev George Martzen is Minister Attached to The Bishop’s Office.
AS PART of Aldersgate Convention 2006, a full-day seminar will be held on May 27 for those interested in leading the evangelistic course, Christianity Explored, in their churches.
The seminar will be held at Sophia Blackmore Hall on the 6th floor of Methodist Centre in Barker Road from 9 am to 4 pm. The Rev Rico Tice, an Associate Minister at All Souls Church in London who developed the course, and Mr Barry Cooper are the presenters.
Christianity Explored is a 10-week programme developed by All Souls Church in London. It is similar to the Alpha Course. The course is being introduced to local Methodist churches.
The registration fee for the seminar is $65 per person, but those who register before April 28 will only have to pay $50. Groups of 10 will also be accorded the special fee of $50 per person even after April 28. The fee includes lunch, tea, and handouts.
Registration forms are available at your Methodist church or online at www.methodist.org.sg
You may also use the registration form printed on the facing page of this issue of Methodist Message.