Methodist Church

3 Annual Conference churches worship under one roof

Pastors and leaders of the three Toa Payoh churches pose for a picture with Bishop Dr Solomon (fourth from left). They are, from left, the Rev John Chiok (Pastor-in-Charge, Toa Payoh Chinese MC), Pastor Raymond Sim (Toa Payoh MC), the Rev Chew Eng Pin (Assistant Pastor, TPCMC), the Rev R. Prabhu (Pastor-in-Charge, Toa Payoh Tamil MC), the Rev Derrick Lau (Pastor-in-Charge, TPMC), Mr T. Jeevanantham (Lay Preacher, TPTMC), and Mr Tay Kiam Kan (Lay Leader, TPCMC). — TPMC picture.

Toa Payoh Methodist churches celebrate World Communion Sunday 2003

WORLD Communion Sunday — Oct 5, 2003 — was the day which brought into sharp focus the significance of our Methodist Connection.

It was celebrated by the three Annual Conference churches at Toa Payoh Methodist Church. This was the first time ever that the three churches have held a combined worship service.

Congregations from Toa Payoh Chinese Methodist Church (Chinese Annual Conference, CAC), Toa Payoh Tamil Methodist Church (Emmanuel Tamil Annual Conference, ETAC), and Toa Payoh Methodist Church (Trinity Annual Conference, TRAC) gathered at the first-floor Shalom Hall, second-floor Sanctuary and third-floor Praise Gallery of the church in Toa Payoh to worship together and commemorate the Lord’ Supper as a united body of Christ.

Bishop Dr Robert Solomon, who was the guest preacher, also administered the Lord’s Supper. After the service, the more than 1,000 members and guests of the three congregations adjourned to the car park for a mini-carnival-cum-lunch fellowship.

Bishop Dr Solomon shared the sermon “Being the Body of Christ” from the scripture text of 1 Corinthians 12:12 and 13. He made three points:

1. The Unity of the Body of Christ
We share the same name as Christians, bearing the name of Christ. We are all baptised with the same baptism – in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. We serve the same God, we have the same purpose and we are one body of Christ.
2. The Diversity in the Body of Christ
Diversity is natural and important for the body to function well. Our diversity must be a blessing and not a curse to us.
3. The Body of Christ as Community
It is important for us as a community to be differentiated and not divided. Love is the glue of the community. It is the work of the Holy Spirit to bring the community together.

This year marks the 67th Year of World Communion Sunday. It is celebrated on the first Sunday in October. It is one of the most venerable of “special Sundays.” The day has taken on new relevancy and meaning in a world of globalisation and in a time when fear divides the peoples of God’s earth.

On this day Christians celebrate their oneness in Christ, the Prince of Peace, in the midst of the world they are called to serve — a world ever more in need of peacemaking.

World Communion Sunday (originally called World Wide Communion Sunday) originated in the Presbyterian Church (USA). In 1936, for the first time, the first Sunday in October was celebrated in Presbyterian churches in the United States and abroad. Today, besides the Presbyterian Church, the United Methodist Church, Christian Church and United Church of Christ are some of the denominations celebrating World Communion Sunday.