BARKER ROAD METHODIST CHURCH LAUNCHES NEW MINISTRY FOR SINGLES: connect@brmc
AFTER praying for three years, finally on May 6, 2006, connect@brmc became a reality when 50 excited people gathered at Wesley Hall at Methodist Centre for a simple Dedication Service. It is the new ministry at Barker Road Methodist Church (BRMC) for singles – unmarried, widowed or divorced – aged 35 years and above.
Despite an afternoon downpour, God answered our prayer for good weather just before the start of the gathering.
The event began with a time of praise and worship led by Ms Jacqueline Yeo and accompanied by Ms Clara Chong, who came to our rescue when we needed a musician.
Ms Grace Ong, the Chairman of connect@brmc, introduced us to the ministry’s Mission and Vision (see sidebar). Then followed lively testimonies from Ms Joanna Loo, who attended our earlier kelong retreat in January 2006, and by Ms Wu Siew See, who joined the book study in March 2006 when her cell group from her own church was discontinued.
A surprise awaited the guests when Ms Ong danced with tambourines and brightly coloured ribbons to the inspiring tune of a Mandarin worship song, “Arise and Glorify God”. The audience was delighted.
The highlight of the event was the Rev Malcolm Tan’s inaugural address entitled “Single but yet not alone.” The Rev Tan, Pastor-in-Charge of BRMC, based his talk from the book of Ecclesiastes 4:9–12, popularly chosen by wedding couples.
He began by sharing that there are two different approaches to the singles ministry. One view is that it is for confirmed singles seeking similar friends. Another is that it is a place to look for a spouse.
Both are extremes, he said, and he proposed a balanced view that we are here (no matter what our pre-disposition to the state of singlehood or that of marriage) to encourage one another in our life’s journey and to provide Christian companionship as we form a mutually supportive community in Christ.
However, in the journey of life, circumstances may change unexpectedly and people may find themselves no longer single. Hence, singlehood may not always be a permanent state for everyone.
Yet, being permanently single should not mean that we would be alone either.
The good news is that for the Christian, we have the Lord Jesus who is always with us as pointed out in Matthew 18:20.
The text also tells us that we have the companionship of other believers in our life’s journey, with whom we can meet together in Christ’s name.
The Rev Tan cautioned that some people may not be prepared at all for marriage and cited the example of John Wesley, whose temperament appeared to be more suited for a single life, while his brother Charles was known to have enjoyed a happy family life.
The Rev Tan encouraged everyone at connect@brmc to come together and give mutual support and encouragement no matter where life’s journey takes them so that although currently single, they are yet not alone.
The event ended with a dedication of the committee members, followed by dinner at the ACS (Barker Road) canteen.
Grace Ong is the Chairman of connect@brmc.
Ministry’s vision and mission
JEREMIAH 29:11 “For I know the plans that I have for you” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, to give you a future and a hope.”
Vision: To present every single-adult matured in Christ.
Seek God in all that we do.
Serve the Lord locally and in missions.
Study God’s word together.
Support and encourage one another.
Our prayer is for: God to raise up a community of love among us, that will fulfil Jesus’ command in Matthew 22: 37–39 to “love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind, and love our neighbour as yourself.”
These are the officials of connect@brmc: Chairman: Ms Grace Ong; Secretary: Ms Wee York Ming; Treasurer: Ms Murniawati Wirijia; Hospitality: Ms Ruth Seah; Publicity: Ms Jacqueline Yeo.
For enquiries, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Website: www.brmc.org.sg/church life/singles
Watch out for these new programmes: October 2006 – Teaching English as a foreign language in Myanmar; December 2006 – Mission trip to New Delhi; August 2007 – Trip to Korea and prayer mountain.