Category Archives: Grace Methodist Church

Fellowship and bonding during CNY visitations

CNY CNY visitations at GMC members’ homes. Photo credit – from various sources.

by James TC Wong

MAR 5, MIRI - As the new pastor-in-charge of Grace Methodist Church (GMC), Rev. Lenita Tiong took the opportunity to visit church members during the recent Chinese New Year (CNY) holidays.

Accompanying her were Associate Lay Leader Tan Kok Chui and some members of GMC. They visited homes of LCEC leaders as well as members who especially held Open House on the first day of the New Lunar Year.

These visits allowed the new Pastor to know her congregation better and vice versa. Frederick Wong, Honorary Captain of 4th Miri Boys’ Brigade, was elated to receive the visiting group on the first day when he held an Open House. “Though the visit by Pastor Lenita and the church members was brief, it meant a lot to me and my family. We really appreciate the singing of hymns and Pastor’s blessing prayer upon my household,” he said.

GMC Lay Leader Michael Lee praised God for the fellowship opportunity. “Pastor Lenita, leaders, i-Youth and the Boys’ Brigade visitations encouraged us greatly,” he added.

“It’s wonderful for our good shepherd to visit her flock during this festive holidays. Not only it provided time for fellowship and blessing, but also time for bonding as a family of God,” commented Paul Wong, the LCEC Vice Chairman.

For Aaron Tie, a New Zealand PR spending his first Chinese New Year in Miri, said the event was meaningful being blessed by the sincerity from brothers and sisters-in-Christ. “The worship and prayers for the families who opened their houses were so unique and important on the first day and I enjoyed it much. I am thankful that I could join the visiting group after the CNY Worship Service. It was a wonderful experience and a great start for the Year of the Goat,” he added.

Kuala Lumpur-based Sunway College student Emmanuel Lee also joined his parents Simon and Sally for visitation. The 18-year-old who was back for the CNY break said: “The best thing about it was we could actually gather and have fellowship with one another and even sang Christian songs in each house that we visited. It was indeed and enjoyable experience for me.”

For Rosanna Ting, wife of Dr. Roy Wong, it was a blessed visit from the good pastor and church members. “We had a wonderful time of fellowship, praise and worship and a blessing prayer. A very effective way of pastoral care. Thank you all for the much treasured visit,” she said. Her son Daniel Wong, who was back on holidays from his studies at the National University of Singapore, played the piano for the worship and singing during the home visitation. It was so good that the Associate Lay Leader gleefully declared that they would bring Daniel and the piano along for next year’s visitations.

After the weekend, Pastor Lenita also dropped by the GMC Ladies Fellowship Group to share blessings with them. The good shepherd and her team also visited house-bound members such as Michelle Chong and Alfred Sim, as well as Uncle Hong Yin Tiew who was recently admitted to a private hospital.

On a separate occasion, the 4th Miri Boys’ Brigade led by Captain Roseline Lee and officers also visited their members’ homes last Saturday as part of their scheduled CNY activity.

WHAT’S YOUR STORY? – Witnessing a spiritual awakening

IMG_3808a Photo credit image – James TC Wong

WHAT’S YOUR STORY? is a new series of life-changing testimonies by GMC members. Sharing stories of trials, and God’s faithfulness and love is our gift to the community.

by Y E Wong, Grace Methodist Church

MIRI - Year 2015 will surely mark a milestone in the annals of GMC. On Jan 4 Sunday Worship Service, God spoke to us through our new Pastor-in-charge Rev. Lenita. In her sermon entitled “The People of God”, the good shepherd tenderly reminded the congregation of how wonderful and mighty is the God we serve. Her inspiring and touching delivery on the importance of the word of God in our lives drove the message home. The anointing of God was very much felt when she continued to encourage the congregation to embark on the “Walk Through The Bible” exercise together as a family of God.

“Walk Through The Bible” is an initiative by the District Laity Commission to encourage the church members in the Miri District to read through the whole Bible in 3 years. This year we are reading from 2 Kings till Psalm 150 and the program requires participants to read only a chapter a day. And at the end of the week, there are some factual questions to be answered. These consists of simple True/False statements, filling in the blanks and multiple choice questions. The questions are set by the pastors in the Miri District and the target is for half the average attendees of Sunday worshipers participate and for these to obtain at least 50% of the marks.

After the service, 66 members immediately signed up to participate in the reading program. In the days and weeks that followed, registration came in like snowflakes through Whatsapp, email and sms. By early February, two weeks after the commencement of the exercise, we were still receiving registration which has hit a record high of 153 (for a small congregation of 230)! Equally encouraging is the response of over 90 participants who had submitted their answers. Praise the Lord!

We have no idea of the wonderful things God has for us when we humble ourselves and love God enough to live His Way. Let us continue to encourage one another to walk through the Bible together as one body!

LCEC INSTALLATION

GMC 2015-16 LCEC
Top pic – Rev. Lenita Tiong conducting the installation. Bottom pic – Congregation praying for the LCEC members. Photographer – Abel Wong Ing Hwa.

by James TC Wong

Feb 8, Miri - The newly-elected 2015-16 Local Church Executive Committee (LCEC) members of Grace Methodist Church (GMC) were formally installed this morning during the Sunday Worship Service.

Witnessed by the congregation, the solemn ceremony was conducted by Rev. Lenita Tiong, the Pastor-in-charge.

The LCEC is an administrative body whose functions are to administer the day-to-day life of the church. It is also responsible to the Local Conference.

All glory to God!

2015-16 LCEC

Pastor-in-charge Rev. Lenita Tiong
Lay Leader Michael Lee
Associate Lay Leaders Tan Kok Chui, Yung Teck Chung
Chairman Alex Tiang
Deputy Chairman Paul Wong
Recording Secretary Cheryl Chen
Treasurer Wong Sing Ngii
Finance & Stewardship Ngu Hieng Kiing
Membership & Evangelism Richard Lin
Program Monica Tiong
Missions Aaron Hii
Christian Education Charles Ling
Christian Literature Wong Yieng Eng
Social Concerns Chia Kah Pheng
Worship & Music Ling Zing Tieng
Property Management Desmond Ling
Children’s Sunday School Vivien Lim
Internal Audit William Law
Multimedia James TC Wong
PPRC Amy Shih
Boys’ Brigade Roseline Lee
Girls’ Brigade Eunice Ho
Elective Stewards Hwang Boon Huat, Yvonne Lee, Joanne Ting, Brian Hwong, Ha Wen Zhe

SMPC Dedication Day

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Clockwise – From top right SCAC President Rev. Dato’ Dr. Su Chii Ann blessing the new parsonage, Group photo in front of the new parsonage, Ribbon-cutting of the new chapel and SMPC office, Group photo outside the SMPC building.

Story by Peter Laguna Wong, Photos – James TC Wong

MIRI – Jan 31 2015 marks another historical day in the annals of Senadin Methodist Campus Gospel Centre (SMCGC), now officially known as Senadin Methodist Preaching Centre (SMPC). This day marked the officiation and dedication of the parsonage and the chapel as well as the office of SMPC. The event was graced by our President of Sarawak Chinese Annual Conference (SCAC) – Rev. Dato’ Dr. Su Chi Ann, our Miri District Superintendent – Rev. Simon Ting, Methodist church members from all around Miri, members of SMPC, as well as the Boys from the 4th Miri Company. Amidst the jovial anticipation, the noon started with a simple dedication service for the parsonage before moving on to SMPC’s chapel and office. And what a blessed noon it was, with singings of hymns and prayers and rites in a meaningfully memorable Methodist fashion before ending with a high tea fellowship session.

During the service, Rev. Dr. Su Chi Ann firmly exhorted all those present of the vision and mission of SMPC, summed up nicely in the form of the five ‘looks’:
1. To ‘look around’ for various existing opportunities to evangelize in Senadin.
2. To ‘look out’ for lost souls and those thirsty for the word of the Lord.
3. To ‘look after’ the congregation of SMPC and guide them to spiritual maturity.
4. To ‘look up’ to our Abba Father above to for strength and providence to carry out His great commission and to remain focused onto Him.
5. To ‘look forward’ to the years ahead, full of blessings and challenges for SMPC at every turn.

Rev. Dr Su reminded all as well that everything in the past, present and future are 100% God’s work, and we all should be rest assured in continuing to serve Him. At the same time, the Great Commission is also 100% our work, and therefore we should shoulder it with great fervour and faith.

This simple dedication service has also showcased the unity of the Methodist members. From SMPC starting out 12 years ago as a humble 1st floor shop lot, to its interior renovation and upgrading, to its extension to the adjacent lot, and now to having a chapel and office on the ground floor as well as a parsonage we can truly call our own – all these will not be possible without the benevolent givers, the expert planners, the fervent doers, the passionate prayer-warriors, and the ardent supporters from all walks of life tirelessly contributing all they can. For these we truly thank you all from the bottom of our hearts. SMPC will surely continue to grow and steadfastly be the channel of blessings. To God be the glory.

Pre-Christmas Celebration in Tudan

IMG_3522 Christmas Outreach @ Tudan for Connection for web
The famous tambourine dancers of GMT giving a performance.

by James TC Wong

Tudan, Miri - More than 350 Tudan residents attended a pre-Christmas celebration including singing songs of praises and tambourine dancing at Gereja Methodist Tudan (GMT) on Sunday night, Dec 21.

For the second consecutive year, Grace Methodist Church (GMC) has supported GMT in their Christmas event in the hope of sharing joy with the Tudan residents during the season of giving.

Guests Rolland and Gary said they were glad to be invited to the event for the first time. “Now we know the true meaning of Christmas and why Jesus was born, ” added the elated teenagers.

Another newcomer Ting Leh Hong felt blessed and joyful during the three-hour program. “I’m so glad I came here tonight,” she commented.

IMG_3548 Christmas Outreach @ Tudan for Connection for web
Everyone was served with delicious food.

A scrumptious dinner was served to all to end the celebration.

BB Love Box launched in Miri

IMG_3515 BB Love Box for Connection for web
The happy beneficiaries taking a group pic with the BB.

by James TC Wong, 4th Miri

Dec 22, Miri - To celebrate the Christmas season, the Miri Boys’ Brigade handed over gifts to 147 beneficiaries at Gereja Methodist Tudan (GMT) yesterday.

Affectionately named as the BB Love Box, the community project first started in Kuching in the year 2012 whereby the Boys’ Brigade members organize, collect and distribute presents to needy families irrespective of their race or religion.

An accommodating feature of the BB Love Box is that the beneficiary gets to pick three gifts from a wish list of five items; school bag, stationery, socks, lunch box or water bottle.

Witnessed by the GMT Pastor-in-charge Rev. Ling Biu, the gifts were handed over to the beneficiaries by BB Officers and Boys from 3rd Miri, 4th Miri and 5th Miri.

Speaking after the presentation, the Chairman of Miri BB Love Box, Captain Clement Hii (3rd Miri) said: “I’m so glad we are able to carry out this unique project in Miri for the first time. The Kuching Boys’ Brigade has done well by raising 3,600 presents; we will try our best to do more next year with the help from the public and other NGOs.”

i-Kasih Community Outreach

IMG_3458 i-Kasih Group pic for Connection for web
One for the album – church members and Pastors taking a group pic.

by James TC Wong

Dec 20, Miri – In this season of joy and giving, Grace Methodist Church has joined Mei Ann Methodist Church, Hwai En Methodist Church and Gereja Methodist Tudan in distributing food packs to the less-privileged families.

The food pack, consisting of Milo, rice, cooking oil and sugar were presented to 120 families residing in the Tudan Resettlement, Permyjaya, Batu Satu Kuala Baram and Kg. Pasir Lutong.

To aptly name the community project, “i-Kasih” was ingeniously coined from the English word ‘I’ and Bahasa Malaysia ‘Kasih’ which literally means, “I Love”.

A demographic study reveals there are 20,000 residents within a 10 km radius of Tudan, Permyjaya, Kuala Baram and Kg. Pasir mostly of the Iban race. Many are vulnerable families who find it difficult to cope with the increasing costs in daily livelihood.

IMG_3485 i-Kasih for CONNECTION for web
Two families residing at Kg. Pasir Lutong receiving the food packs from Methodist members.

“With this ‘i-Kasih’ outreach project, we wish to bless needy families in a small way. Through this, we hope Methodist churches can befriend beneficiaries and their families through future church-engagement events like the pre-Christmas Celebration to be held in Gereja Methodist Tudan (GMT) on Dec 21,” said Chia Kah Pheng, the Chairman for Social Concerns Ministry at Grace Methodist Church.

“Christmas is the season to share our love with the needy and to give them hope in the darkness. United as Methodists, we uphold our Social Principles to stand together with the poor and under-privileged group,” said Wong Kung Kui, the project organizer and Chairman of Gereja Methodist Tudan.

Rh. Tatom Mission Trip

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Sharing early Christmas joy with the folks at Rh. Tatom.

by James TC Wong

Nov 28-29, Miri - Nineteen people from Grace Methodist Church (GMC) including two from Senadin Methodist Campus Gospel Centre (SMCGC) and one from Sidang Injil Borneo (SIB) made a visit to Rh. Tatom, Selangau recently.

Organized by GMC, the purpose of the trip was to minister to the residents of Rh. Tatom and to celebrate the joy of Christmas with them.

“We’re thankful to God for this blessed opportunity to visit and minister to the people of Rh. Tatom,” said team leader Richard Lin. “Rh. Tatom is no stranger to us as we have been in contact with them for the past years and have seen them grown.”

BB Evangelistic Rally in Miri

IMG_2324 Rev Lisa asking a Boy to comment. for web
Rev. Lisa asking a Boy to share his thoughts.

by James TC Wong

AUG 16, MIRI - This year the Miri District Boys’ Brigade Evangelistic Rally was hosted by 4th Miri at its Sponsoring Church, Grace Methodist.

The annual event was well-attended by more than a hundred Officers and Boys from all the six Companies locally-based.

In her welcoming message, 4th Miri Captain Roseline Lee thanked all the Officers and Boys for their participation. “We are deeply encouraged and excited to see all the six Companies here today. We also want to take this opportunity to welcome you to listen to our Pastor’s rally message.”

GMC Pastor-in-charge Rev. Lisa Ting delivered an interesting exhortation containing the elements of evangelism.

She first began by asking the Boys’ perspectives on how fulfilling their lives were on a scale from one to ten. With the different responses received, Rev. Lisa then invited some of the Boys to share their thoughts on stage.

“If you stood before God now and if He were to ask you, ‘Why should I let you into my Heaven?’, what would you say?” continued Rev. Lisa, again receiving several enthusiastic responses from the floor.

During her 40-minute exhortation, Rev. Lisa also covered ‘Life’s Purpose’, ‘How to receive Salvation’, and ‘Living a fullest life with Christ Jesus’. The good shepherd also shared her personal story on her fears and hopes during her growing-up years; from a child to teen years and subsequently on to becoming a young adult.

“But ultimately you need to remember this verse from Romans 8:39 - No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord,” said Rev. Lisa as she summed up her message.

Following that, a group photo taken and light refreshments were served.

IMG_2356 for web
One for the album!

Celebrating 25 years To The Glory of God!

IMG_1813 for connection for web
CAKE CUTTING DURING LUNCHEON! Front row – LR SMCGC Pr. Tiong Huong Ong, Miri Methodist District Lay Leader Mr. Lau Kung Mei, GMC Lay Leader Mr. Michael Lee, SCAC President Rev. Dato’ Dr. Su Chii Ann, GMC Chairman Mr. Alex Tiang, Miri Methodist District Superintendent Rev. Esther Law, GMC Pastor-in-charge Rev. Lisa Ting. Photo credit – Chang Yi.

by James TC Wong

MIRI - Grace Methodist Church turned 25 years old with a simple yet meaningful celebration to honor God on Aug 10.

A thanksgiving service was held with SCAC President Rev. Dato’ Dr. Su Chii Ann as the guest-of-honor and preacher. Miri Methodist District Lay Leader Mr. Lau Kung Mei was also present to witness the joyful occasion.

In his opening sermon, Rev. Dato’ Dr. Su acknowledged and thanked the founding members of the church. “I’m delighted to see several of you today faithfully serving God and this church,” praised Rev. Dato’ Dr. Su. “With God’s grace, I believe your church will grow from strength to strength in the years to come.”

To avoid complacency, the SCAC President challenged the congregation to move out of their comfort zone and do more to advance God’s kingdom.

Drawing the verses from Mark 10:17-23, Rev. Dato’ Dr. Su recapped the parable of the wealthy young man who wanted eternal life but his worldly possessions stopped him from venturing forward to what Christ has to offer. “Eternal life is not a commodity to buy and sell. It is a free gift received with faith,” he reiterated.

“Ask yourself – after 25 years in GMC, how can I go farther in the future? What is lacking in me?” the good shepherd asked the congregation.

“Hence you need to be committed, and commitment means action, love and obedience,” elaborated Rev. Dato’ Dr. Su, giving more explanations with examples.

In closing, Rev. Dato’ Dr. Su summarized his sermon with the following: “Commitment needs action, Action without love does not last; Love without obedience is not real.”

Other highlights during the service included a hymn by the GMC Choir and the i-YA (youths) performing a dance. PPRC Chairperson Mrs. Amy Shih also gave a brief report of the church’s history and walked the congregation down the memory lane with a video clip.

Following the service, a celebration luncheon was held at a local restaurant. Proceeds from the sale of the luncheon tables went to the building fund of SMCGC (Senadin Methodist Campus Gospel Centre). SMCGC Lay Leader Fidella Tiew thanked the GMC members for their strong support. “We are very grateful for your love shown to us and we hope we can build our new church building together,” she said.

GMC Pastor-in-charge Rev. Lisa Ting, in her luncheon speech, thanked God for the blessed and auspicious event.

“People say time is a relative term. 25 years can be a long time or just pass like in the blink of an eye,” said Rev. Lisa. “In 1982 I was only four years old when seeds of foundation of this church were first sown during the English worship service at Mei Ann Methodist Church.”

Rev. Lisa then briefly touched on the growth of GMC and expressed her heartfelt thanks to all the members who did the church-planting in Taman Tunku, Tudan and Senadin.

Through the years Grace MC is known for its outreach and missions ministries, and warm Christian love, added Rev. Lisa

“We may have a small congregation but our members are faithfully embracing our Methodist quadrennial theme ‘Spreading Scriptural Holiness, Transforming the Nation’ as our spiritual compass,” affirmed the good shepherd.

Rev. Lisa summed up by asking the church members to join her in reciting the church’s purpose statement – ‘Building a strong and united church where every member is equipped with works of service through whom Jesus Christ is made known.’