9TH SESSION OF THE GENERAL CONFERENCE OF THE METHODIST CHURCH IN SINGAPORE:
SEPT 8-13, 2008
THERE is evidence of God’s grace working in, among, and through us in this current quadrennium.
So saying, Bishop Dr Robert Solomon added that “if we trust our living God and act in obedience, He will continue to lead us ever forward”.
He disclosed in his Episcopal Address that “we now have 44 local conferences in our Methodist connection, with a total
membership of 35,221, as at July 31, 2007”.
During this quadrennium, three local conferences were constituted – Christalite Methodist Chapel (TRAC) on July 31, 2005; Agape Methodist Church (TRAC) on Dec 4, 2005; and Telegu Methodist Church (ETAC) on July 27, 2008.
“Though we have grown steadily in real numbers since we began with 10,515 members in 1976, our average annual membership growth has been declining every quadrennium.
“However, I am pleased to note that the declining average growth seems to have been reversed. This looks promising for us as I think it reflects the relative strength of the evangelistic and discipling ministries in our churches. One possible indicator of this is that the average worship attendance in our churches has grown steadily from 75.7 per cent of total membership in 1996 to 87.7 per cent in 2007. We must praise God for His grace and power at work among us.”
The Bishop also had the privilege of being involved in the consecration or dedication of seven church buildings.
They are: Living Hope Methodist Church (Consecration on Feb 5, 2005); Pentecost Methodist Church (Dedication on June 4, 2006); Telok Ayer Chinese Methodist Church TA2 (Dedication on Nov 12, 2006); Charis Methodist Church (Dedication on Dec 31, 2006); Kum Yan Methodist Church (Dedication on March 11, 2007); and Faith Methodist Church/Queenstown Chinese Methodist Church – joint premises (Dedication on Jan 19, 2008).
These new buildings represent better facilities for our churches to enable them to serve better their congregations and communities.
Besides the churches the Bishop also dedicated six new school campuses and buildings. They are Faifield Methodist Secondary School (on July 30, 2005); Methodist Girls’ School (July 14, 2006); Geylang Methodist School (Secondary) (Aug 25, 2007); Paya Lebar Methodist Girls’ School (Secondary) (Oct 12, 2007); Anglo-Chinese School’s (Independent) IB Campus (March 1, 2008); and Anglo- Chinese Junior College’s Centre for Performing Arts (May 23, 2008).
“God has been good and has blessed our educational mission with dedicated school boards, principals, teachers, chaplains, CMSs, local churches, alumni and parents that have strongly supported our schools,” the Bishop said, adding: “In our mission work, we have also been progressing steadily.”
He has been involved in the consecration and dedication of four churches and institutions in Thailand and Cambodia.