THE CHURCH OF JESUS CHRIST exists in and for the world as an expression of love and harmony in a broken world. In this spirit and confidence, The Methodist Mission in Nepal was instituted in Katmandu, Nepal by Bishop Dr Robert Solomon on Oct 20, 2008.
By God’s grace, over a period of 10 years since Methodist work first began there, there are now three families serving as cross-cultural missionaries together with a dedicated and faithful group of national pastors and evangelists. Jointly they have established six churches and five preaching points.
The Methodist Missions Society (MMS) has completed a three-year church-planting curriculum and thus has equipped the national pastors and lay leaders for the work of multiplying. We thank God for enabling us to purchase a property for Sophia’s Home, a permanent home for 50 disadvantaged girls, as well as giving the MMS the necessary funding to complete building a new facility in East Nepal to train 40 evangelists and church planters every year.
In November 2006, the then Executive Director of the MMS, the Rev Dr Norman Wong, appealed through Methodist Message, for help to provide a home for Wesley Methodist Church and Sophia’s Home in Nepal. Many responded but funds were still not enough to complete the full purchase of the two properties.
The alternative was to house Sophia’s Home and Wesley Methodist Church in the same location as all the girls in Sophia’s Home attend Saturday service at the church. However, the authorities disallowed this arrangement as it was not permitted in Nepal for children to live in a religious setting.
It is now the MMS’ plan to provide a permanent home for Wesley Methodist Church in the Methodist Centre as well as to optimise the use of the building and space. This is a big project and it requires the collective will of Methodists in Singapore. Just as the early Methodists from the US gave generously and sacrificially to help purchase land in Singapore and build Methodist churches, the MMS invites Singapore Methodists to give generously to The Methodist Mission in Nepal.
The cost of purchasing the land and development of the project is estimated to be NPR 25 million (S$500,000). So far, a reserve fund of NPR 6.2 million (S$124,000) has been accumulated. A sum of 11 million NPR (S$220,000) is needed to purchase a 5,000-sq ft piece of land.
The MMS’ prayer is to raise the shortfall of about S$96,000 before the price of land increases in Kathmandu. It is also timely to establish a Methodist Centre as the work in Nepal is growing at a fast pace. Already The Methodist Mission in Nepal is moving into its Second Annual Meeting with its own constitution and Book of Discipline, and is working on a roadmap for a centre of conferencing, learning and mission work in all 72 districts of Nepal.
Col (Retd) Quek Koh Eng is an Area Director of the Methodist Missions Society.