Are these testimonies to the work of the Holy Spirit?
- A 94-year-old worshipper walking 10 km each way to attend church
- A crippled lady in her 60s making her way to church
- A 70-year-old man bringing his handicapped wife, who is crippled from the waist down, on a tricycle to attend church
It reminds me of the words in Zechariah 4:6 – “Not by might, nor by power, but by my spirit, saith the LORD of hosts.” (KJV)
In 2009, the Methodist Missions Society (MMS) organised a ‘Vacation with a Purpose’ trip to HS*. On a Sunday morning, intending to join a local church for worship, the team was disappointed at not being able to locate one. The team leader, TCK, returned a few months later, determined to look for a church. After some enquiries, he was informed that there was a local church in GC village. He decided to venture to this village in spite of the challenges to get there due to the poor transportation system.
He embarked on a faith journey, following the main road that leads to the village. Turning a corner into a small mud track, he started walking into the village, not knowing whether there was actually a church at the end of it.
After walking for about half an hour, he began to have doubts. However, his desire to locate the church encouraged him to continue walking. His determined effort was rewarded when he saw a cross in the distance. He had arrived at GC Church (GCC)!
It was the beginning of a wonderful partnership, one that has grown over the last seven years.
GCC was started by five families led by three elderly believers. Through their faithful witness, a Christian community was established. Although the Elders had no theological education, they zealously shared the gospel with the villagers. Many of the initial worshippers were elderly and had very little education, yet the gospel was shared beyond the village. As a result of their faithfulness, three other worship centres and new believers grew in the TP Lake area under the TP Christian Council (TPCC).
GCC was further blessed when the Government approved a 2,700 sq m parcel of land to build a new church building. The new building was funded by donations from other local churches in HS and ZJ. In 2013, MMS signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Elders of GCC to help build an annex building, adjacent to the church, for ministry. This ministry is in partnership with the TPCC.
In 2014, MMS started its ministry partnership with the TPCC and the formation of a ministry team to oversee the various ministries. These included:
- Pulpit ministry
- Conducting the BTC programme
- Disciple Programme
- Sunday School
- Bible study group
- Outreach through English language classes
The future certainly looks bright as GCC moves into social outreach ministry, and sending small ministry teams for missions exposure. Its partnership with MMS is also growing with greater opportunities for our Methodist churches in Singapore to participate in and help grow ministry capacity in GCC.
The transformation of lives in GCC is truly the work of the Holy Spirit. From its humble beginnings, through the faithfulness of the largely elderly pioneers with a passion and desire to share the gospel, GCC is now a growing and multiplying church, making disciples who live Christ-centred lives and bringing glory to our wonderfully loving God!
*Initials used due to sensitivity
- for the GCC community as they live in faith and grow in maturity
- for transformation in the lives of the younger generation
- for our Methodist churches in Singapore to participate in growing the ministry in GCC
Photos courtesy of the Methodist Missions Society
Col (Ret) Quek Koh Eng –
is Area Director at the Methodist Missions Society. He worships at Charis Methodist Church.