26 Nov—2 Dec 2007

Issue No. 44          

 

The closing prayer at the BGST fundraising dinner brought not only the much awaited funds but also sighs of relief for the 5 of us in the DOC.  We were a motley bunch of untested fundraisers, quite unnerved by the humongous million dollar sum that the Council Chairman had tasked us to raise. But the good and great Lord raised prayer warriors from different quarters to calm our nerves.  Besides the BGST community of council, faculty, staff and students (especially via chapels), prayer intercessions were also made individually and corporately at several churches’ prayer meetings and by pastoral teams.  Indeed the 4 months of prayer modeled after Nehemiah helped to instill in us a sense of waiting in prayer, in faith, in quiet patience as we are taught to “run with patience.” (Hebrews 12:1). 

 

One of the first predicaments came when we did a U-turn from a modest seafood restaurant to a posh hotel venue. It created a situation of mixed feelings - consternation yet jubilation – because it was hard to reconcile the expense involved with the need for funds. But by God’s grace we made it through this seemingly contradictory situation. It would indeed be ungracious not to acknowledge the unexpectedly magnanimous gesture of a BGST supporter for what it was – simple, clear-hearted generosity to ensure  the success of the fundraising project.

 

The DOC has much to thank God for. The event not only raised $825,000 but also brought a higher level of awareness of the School to at least 1,000 more people in the Christian community.  We earnestly pray that the distribution of vouchers for a free sampling of BGST classes may increase student enrolment to fulfill the School’s calling to train and develop the whole people of God in serving His church better.

 

In the months of managing the fundraising work, the Lord had from time to time, made us “see troubles” as part of our humble learning process.  Disturbing news like decline of support from certain churches, unfilled tables, last minute withdrawals, “wrong type of guests” targeted, etc. compelled us to “go down to the depths of the earth” (Ps. 63:9), travel subterranean passages, and lie buried among the dead.  But not for even one moment was the bond of fellowship and oneness between God and us strained to the point of breaking.  And ultimately, from the depths, God did “restore our life again.” (Ps. 71.20). 

 

Despite the many twists and turns along the fundraising route God provided us one smooth, straight portion.  This was marked by such persons who supported the cause such as our keynote speaker, Prof James Houston, who came all the way from distant Vancouver at his own expense and the brother-in-Christ who underwrote the table costs at Fullerton Hotel.  Throughout, we are reminded to be steadfast, “because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain” (1 Cor. 15:58).  And as is written in Nehemiah, we  experienced the true joy of serving the Lord, “for the joy of the Lord is your strength.” (Neh. 8:10).     

 

 

 

And was that something … our night at the Fullerton!

Our biggest fundraising project to date took place on 9th November. We have called on  you to pray with us and we thank you for the support that you’ve shown. Now to bring the event to a proper closure we give you two perspectives on the project by way of reflection from someone who was in the thick of  its organization and another who attended the function.

 

Chairman of the Dinner Organising Committee, Siew Kim Siang writes:

 

On being invited, my initial feeling was excitement, then intrigue. Excitement because I was being given the opportunity to dine at the prestigious Fullerton Hotel, a true monument of luxury and elegance in Singapore and because now I would get to see how the other half  lived.

 

Arriving at 7.00pm, I hurriedly tucked in my shirt before throwing on a tie (desperately

trying to look the part!) and taking the stairs down to the bar to join the guests who were arriving in steady streams. Immediately, a waiter thrust a cold Pepsi into my hand which was much appreciated since I had worked up quite a sweat rushing to make it to the hotel on time from work. I then began mingling with the guests, some who were familiar faces from church, while others were new friends in the making.

 

Thirty minutes passed and we were then directed to our tables inside the dining-room. As we were being seated, Kim Siang, a church elder and BGST Council Member welcomed us and helped to settle us in. We were then treated to a choir presentation by some of the BGST’s male student-body, before Dr Quek Swee Hwa opened us in prayer, blessing the food, and sharing a little of BGST’s history with us. By this time, we were all hungry and eagerly devoured the first dish which arrived promptly.

 

The invited guest speaker, Professor James Houston who flew in especially from Vancouver, shared a message after the fourth dish, speaking about his love of teaching and the importance of theology in training people for lay-ministry. Dr Toh See Kiat, also a church elder and Chairman of BGST Council got up to speak near the end of the banquet and shared on the philosophy of BGST and their strategy for training and equipping laity for ministry. He also pointed out how the fundraising money would be used, and then motivated the diners to ‘partner-up’ with BGST by helping to support it financially, and to pray for its success.

 

All in all, it was a great night at the Fullerton Hotel. Over $800,000 was raised and not only did we all experience warm fellowship together, but the Kingdom of God has now been able to take a greater hold in the hearts of those who have become partners of BGST, and also in the future benefactors of BGST who will receive first-class theological education from note-worthy lecturers who make up the committed faculty of BGST.

A guest, Jeremy Witherow, a pastoral staff member of Mt Carmel BP Church, gives us his impression of his night at Fullerton:

Text Box: Weekly Highlights

Faculty News

1. We warmly welcome Mr Chong Ser Choon as our new part-time lecturer in Spiritual Theology. He is also the Director of Trinity Life Centre.

 

2. Dr Ng Peh Cheng will be away from Nov 27 to Dec 12

· to represent BGST at the Manila Marketplace Consultation &

· as Convener of ATA VET to accredit 2 theological education institutions in Hong Kong

  

Staff Recruitment

Applications for position of Admin Support Staff are invited from interested candidates who meet the following requirements:

· Passed “O” Levels

· Good working knowledge in MS Office

· Has initiative, is independent, responsible & a good team player

· Mature (male applicants preferred)

· Able to work shift hours  

Interested candidates, please  send resume via email attachment to Ms Serene  Woon  admin@bgst.edu.sg by 5 Dec 2007.

 

 

 

31 Tanjong Pagar Road, Singapore 088454   Tel: 62276815   Fax: 62276816   Email: bgst@pacific.net.sg

 

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