This memo is updated on 17 June 2020.
Phase 2 is almost here. Some of you have been awaiting this for a long time for various reasons. Your business may now be opened, or you may now finally be able to meet up with your family and friends. I thank each and every one of you for adhering to the government’s guidelines over all this challenging time. I pray that as we move into this new phase, we will continue to be socially responsible and continue to keep our focus on God’s vision and mission for our church.
The church has never closed
Though we discuss the reopening of the nation, know that the church has never been closed. In these 3 months, we have seen people come to receive Jesus as their Saviour, we have people being baptised in the Spirit over Zoom, we have worshipped in our own homes. We have grieved and rejoiced with our spiritual families in their times of sorrow and joy. No matter which phase we are in, we believe each will offer unique opportunities to show and share the love of Jesus.
Phase 2 – Let us be motivated on how we can share the gospel of Christ better!
Phase 2 means that we are now able to meet face to face in certain environments. And in this (and every) period, our vision and mission remain the same: Love Neighbours, Make Disciples, Plant Churches. In this unique time, more people are open to the gospel. We should go forth and spread the love of Christ more creatively instead of shrinking back. Whether we choose to meet physically or online, let our motivation be how can we serve and reach people as Christ would.
I know many of us long to meet. Let us gently remind each other to practise good personal hygiene and to be socially responsible. Let’s also love one another by being understanding and sensitive to others. If there are members in your group who choose to not meet in person, look for ways to include them when you do gather, such as through video conferencing. If you plan on visiting someone’s home, be considerate of your host’s home and family members.
A new normal – God is still and will always be with us!
As society cautiously enters a new normal, let us take heart and remember that God is with us. Though we navigate through uncertainties, we can boldly hold onto God, ‘our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.’ (Psalms 46:1) Let us place our faith in Jesus, who has promised us that He will surely be with us, to the very end of the age (Matthew 28:20)!
Senior Pastor Jeff Chong
17 June 2020
Not at this moment. One important aspect of our service is expressing our gratitude to God through worship. Singing is currently not allowed as it is considered an activity with high risk of transmission. With that consideration, we will still be meeting online for service.
Much as we would love to meet face to face, strict measures have to be in place to ensure the safety of these gatherings and to keep the risk of the community spread low.
To ensure the safety of our people and make our gatherings conducive, all meetings and classes will be held online till further notice.
This means that small groups of 5 people and below can meet physically for fellowship, life group or mentoring if they adhere to safe distancing and personal hygiene practices such as wearing a mask, staying home if they are not well, and washing hands.
The government advises all to be:
• Be socially responsible
• Practise good personal hygiene
• Ensure safe distancing and adhere to safe management principles
• Use SafeEntry when required, and check in and out using the TraceTogether app
• Keep number of contacts small and limited to your regular circle of close contacts, to protect yourself and your families
• Seniors, who are especially vulnerable, should continue to exercise extra caution and stay at home as much as possible
Let us be good testimonies for Christ and love people by considering the vulnerable among us.
As the Singapore government advises, singing or speaking loudly are considered activities with higher risks of COVID-19 transmission. As such, we advise against having these activities at this point when we gather in person.
Yes, you can consider going in small groups of 5 or less. As you meet up physically with your neighbours and school mates, do be sensitive to others’ comfort level as you interact.
The principle to this is to keep number of contacts small and limited to protect yourself and your families as the nation slowly reopens. For now, we would advise that you try to stick to a same small group when meeting physically.
Yes you can do that in an F&B outlet, or in public spaces, provided that there is a safe distance between groups. Groups should not mingle.
More information on this will be released at a later date.
• 下载 “合力追踪” (TraceTogether) 手机应用程序
It is now almost eight weeks since the start of the Circuit Breaker, I pray that you are keeping well in the Lord.
This weekend would have been our annual Hope Conference. It is usually when I get to spend extended time with all of you and to meet our global leaders in the Hope Global family. It is a time I cherish a lot and I truly miss seeing everyone and worshipping together.
As the nation eases towards safe re-opening in the next weeks, there are still measures in place that aim to minimise the risk of new surges of cases. In March, the leadership team had discussed and decided to move all in-person gatherings online until 30 June 2020. This includes Service, Life Groups, classes, mentoring and all other meetings. As we observe the situation, we will likely need to continue online gathering and we do this out of a heart to love – to be socially responsible and do our part as a citizen of the nation.
I want to thank and affirm all of you who are innovating, trying new ways to reach out and disciple, and most importantly, for trusting God in this season. I have heard many stories both locally and globally of how people in our church continue to love neighbours, make disciples and plant churches. The staff team and I have also been learning from leaders both local and global on how we can better reach and disciple people through new platforms. The focus has not changed. The mission is not to gather our church on the world wide web. The mission is to take the church to the whole wide world!
The Equip team has also been working on an online Grow Portal since late last year, and we are now ready for you to make full use of the library of resources and the various seasons of classes through this one-stop shop. More details will be given to you this weekend. I encourage you to take the time to look through the resources and classes!
The COVID-19 Hope Fund was also launched a few weeks ago. We have seen many of you come forward to give generously and we have also processed a number of applications. I am proud of our spiritual family and how we come together to care and love tangibly those who are in our midst, and I urge you to be involved by giving generously and applying if you are in need.
This weekend, I will be sharing with you some takeaways from my time away on Sabbath, and I know you will be blessed by the word of God. See you online this weekend
为了把新病例减到最低，接下来我国将进入安全重开的几个星期，这期间仍然会采取一些阻断措施。在三月份，领袖团队决定把所有面对面的聚会带到线上，直到2020年6月30日。这包括主日崇拜，小组聚会，课程，牧养以及所有会议。在我们观察局势的当儿，很可能会继续带着爱心 – 具有社会责任感并公民应尽的责任，在线上聚会。
We have been hugely blessed to hear so many positive testimonies when our church went fully online for Services and Life Groups for last weekend. There were stories of people joining us to fellowship online and even people receiving Jesus into their lives for the very first time! This speaks volumes of the truth that church cannot be closed because it is not a building. We are the church and even in such times, we do not stop being the church!
The COVID-19 pandemic has been an intensely challenging period for the world. As a pastors’ team, we are praying that God will be the strength of your heart as you go through this season (Psalms 73:26). We are also praying for the hope we have in Christ be displayed through all believers. We invite you to join us in daily prayers for the next two weeks.
In this difficult times, we take heart in Scripture in Romans 8:28 – “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” As we recognise our helplessness, let’s take heart in the sovereignty of God and consider what good God can work in us and through us in this season. For a start, we can be intentional to reach out to others through text or social media, to ask how they are doing and to offer up prayers. Let’s shine brightly for Him during these dark times.
The number of cases locally has been rising. Government has advised Singaporeans on tighter safe distancing measures, which work best when more people do it together. With the desire to love our neighbours and indeed be better together, Hope Singapore will be moving all our gatherings online till the end of June 2020. We strongly encourage all seniors to stay home, and stay connected through phone or text. Our Hope Conference will also be postponed to 2021, and refunds will be given to those who have already registered. This is so that we can all play our social responsibility to help reduce cases of local transmission in Singapore.
As we take this extended step, we will certainly miss the opportunity to gather physically. At the same time, we thank God for technology that allows us to have our gatherings online. This is an opportunity to consider alternative forms of expressing our faith to the watching world, to preach the good news through new mediums to new people groups. As we look forward to meet in person again, let us also not miss what God is wanting us to learn in this season.
Throughout church history, the body of Christ has not only survived but thrived and flourished through troubled times. In the same way, let us be a generation of believers who will take the Christian faith deeper into our hearts and further into the community. Christ is leading us, and the church would not cease because we are the church. Let us BE the church and spread the message of hope!
27 March 2020
在艰难之时，让我们谨记罗马书8章28节的经文 – “我们知道，为了爱神的人，就是按他旨意蒙召的人的益处，万事都一同效力。” 我们面对自身的软弱时，越是要牢记神依然掌权，专注于神在我们的生命并通过我们所能成就的善工。比如，我们可以更刻意的发简讯或通过社交媒体去向未信的亲友传扬福音，关心他们的生活，并提议为他们的需要祷告。让我们在这黑暗的时期为主去发出光芒！
随着本地的确诊病例不断升高，政府提出了让新加坡人更严格去保持安全距离的措施。这需要每一个人的通力合作才能奏效。基于爱邻舍的心，和全国人共同的努力，新加坡希望教会将会把我们的所有聚会转为线上，一直到2020年的6月份。我们强烈鼓励所有的年长者待在家中，并通过手机和短讯保持联系。我们今年的希望大会也将延后到 2021 年，那些已经报名的人将获得全额的退款。这一切都是为了减少新加坡本地疫情的传播，以尽到教会的社会责任。
Services will be available weekly on
Parents, you are the best role models for your children. And we are here to support you! Download the guide to see how church would look like for kids this season. Also check out the weekly HopeKids Online Experience!
Let us continue to live and give generously!
Let us look to our sovereign God and pray together! Pray for Singapore and the nations with our 14-day COVID-19 prayer guide, or soak in God’s presence and be ministered by our intercessors at our weekly Online Prayer Rooms.
Pastor Jeff recorded a message for us during his sabbathical leave and reminds us “The darker the night, the brighter the light.” Let us look to Jesus!
Services will be streamed live through church online at all usual service timings. This means that at your usual service timings, instead of making your way to a physical location, you make your way online!
Your leaders may be asking you to join the service together. After the service, your life group will continue to meet and pray for each other online through the various online tools available for discussion.
We have also prepared a 30minute service video for your child. Feel free to download it and go through it with them!
Be intentional to connect. Hope is better together, even online!
In what we have shared above, we believe it is wise and loving to limit in person gatherings during this time.
Should you be meeting up individually or in smaller groups, we recommend you practice safe distancing guidelines as proposed by the government. This is how we can do our part to be loving to others!
All Equip classes and other LG team meetings this weekend will be moved online. Other events in the weeks to come may be postponed or moved online.
One of the ways we can show God’s love is by participating in government endorsed measures, including safe distancing. That’s why we’re not gathering together in person – because this is one of the best ways we can love others right now. Yet this does not mean isolation! We recommend that you go out of your way to cultivate personal contact with your neighbours and whomever God has placed in your way. Make phone calls, text, notice and meet a need while being aware of the safe distancing measures.
BIBLE APP DEVOTIONS
教会的主日崇拜将在周末同样时段通过Church Online 的网站播出。中文堂的聚会则会在在星期六的下午4点版在脸书上直播 。