Bringing Methodists, from home and abroad, together

The annual Methodist Retreat is a way for Methodists, both local and international, to connect with one another and reflect on what makes us distinctly Methodist. It is also a time for the participants to be ministered to, spiritually and emotionally. From 17 to 19 Aug 2018, 53 participants from more than 30 Methodist churches in seven countries got together in Batam to contemplate the theme “One Methodist Church” and the anchoring verse, Ephesians 4:3–6.

Bishop Dr Chong Chin Chung opened the three-day retreat with an exhortation for each one of us to be a Paul or a Timothy on our journey of serving the Lord and His people. We were reminded that God (and the Church) does not owe us anything, but He will also not short-change us.

On the second day, the Rev Dr Daniel Koh shared on the history of The Methodist Church in Singapore, and what the future holds as the three Annual Conferences continue to work towards the vision of becoming one.

On the last day, the Rev Dr Wilfred Ho shared on John 21, a passage familiar to many of us who have been called to ministry. He emphasised that God shapes our lives, especially through tough times, often without our realising it.

There were also group sharing sessions, experiential and thought-provoking games, and time for individuals to reflect on their personal journey with God. It was heartening to see the close bonds growing among Methodists from Singapore and overseas.

Kjelti Koh is in her third year at Trinity Theological College (TTC) and the student co-ordinator for this year’s TTC Methodist Students Retreat. She is a member of Charis Methodist Church and currently serves in the youth ministry.

I had been struggling with God over what I had lost since going into full-time ministry and His not giving me what I wanted. Through Bishop’s message, God reminded me that I had chosen to answer His call, and nobody—not even God—owes me anything. I just need to repent and continue to be faithful.
Melody (Cairnhill Methodist Church)

I was thankful for the opportunity to meet other members of the Methodist family, especially those outside of Singapore, who shared about the cultures and challenges they faced back home.
Yinhong (Geylang Chinese Methodist Church)

The retreat was a time for reflection, relaxation and learning, as well as a reminder about how God works in our lives through godly people and also a world-wide organisation like the Methodist Church.
John (attached to Ang Mo Kio Methodist Church [ETAC])

I hope that we will continue to emphasise the distinctiveness of Wesleyan doctrine and theology, which are not covered much in our theological studies, and yet a precious part of being Methodist.

Photos courtesy of Trinity Theological College