17 April 2020
PASTORAL LETTER IN CIRCUIT-BREAKER TIME
I bring you greetings in the blessed name of our Triune God, His ways and thoughts are higher than ours, his steadfast love never ceases, and his mercies never come to an end.
As Singapore enters the second week of elevated safe distancing measures, we, the church, must brace ourselves for the deepening impact of not meeting together. Our physical presence as the body of Christ is both a witness to the unchurched and a comforting ministry to the saints. The current circumstances are certainly forcing us all to rethink how to be church in terms of fellowship among believers and outreach to pre-believers. We also have to be creative in how ministry continues to be expressed and carried out. It is likely that the changes that we make will stay with us for a long time even after the COVID-19 pandemic is over. For example, it is not hard to see that the church will continue to harness technology for teaching, fellowship and outreach as it is has begun to do at very short notice.
Meanwhile, as we adjust towards a new normal, our commitment to Christ and his church cannot be less. We must be even more intentional and deliberate in the disciplines of discipleship. It is on this note that I wish to share with you four ministry platforms in which you can participate.
Discipling children Parents of P5 and P6 children are reminded to join with their children to participate in the Crossbeam video lessons that are live streamed only at 9am on Sundays. This will enable you to lead your own children in discussion after the video presentation. You may then join in the worship service via video streaming at a later time in the morning.
Prayer We have moved the weekly prayer meeting online to 8am on Sunday. This serves as a good way to prepare for the worship service at 9am. Ps Nat coordinates the prayer meeting. Please contact him for access to the online meeting platform.
Bible Brother Daniel Sim leads a group of men in reading the Bible on most Sundays of the month. This is one way in which we can be encouraged and held accountable in taking in Scripture. Any man who wishes to join may contact Daniel directly or if not, you may also check with me.
Virtual fellowship Just so that we can see familiar faces during this time apart and don’t forget what our brothers and sisters look like, please send photo images of yourself and your family participating in worship at home to email@example.com. We wish to show them at the end of the service every week.
As you would already know, we would not be able to hold congregational worship services at least until after 4 May. Our weekly worship service has gone online and is streamed at 9am on Sunday. Please visit the Hebron BP Church website at hebronbp.org for the link to the video stream. You will need a Facebook account to gain access. We are aware that some of you who do not have Facebook accounts have been unable to do so. We apologise for this but wish to assure you that we are taking steps to make the video stream available on other platforms as well.
The pastoral team and the Session members continue to be available for prayer, pastoral care and encouragement. Please do not hesitate to contact me or any of the pastoral team or Session member should you need help. At the same time, may I remind you that you can also encourage your leaders as many of you have done. Even a short text asking, “How are you?” will speak volumes of brotherly love and mutual concern. Do not underestimate your own ability to bless!
May God bless and keep you and your loved ones in his grace. Take time to commit to memory Ephesians 4.22-24, our theme scripture for the year, which says,
22 to put off your old self, which belongs to your former manner of life and is corrupt through deceitful desires, 23 and to be renewed in the spirit of your minds, 24 and to put on the new self, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness.
May this season of separation help each of us grow and be transformed ever more into the likeness of Christ.
Rev Wong Shin Hoe
Hebron Bible-Presbyterian Church