The Next Lap – FAQ
8 January 2021
Moving from Cluster to Congregation – see details here: https://www.zionbishan.org.sg/2021/01/the-next-lap-moving-zion-bishan-forward/
Previously we were coming to Sunday service in Cluster-pairs once every fortnight. Now we will take this forward, forming 4 AG-based Cluster-Congregations that will attend fixed time slots every Sunday, in person.
Our primary motivation is to ensure the effective discipleship and pastoral care of every member in Zion Bishan.
Thus, each Worship Service will form its own Cluster-based Congregation, comprising a number of AGs. It will be led by a dedicated Shepherding Team comprising 1 Pastor & 2 Elders, supported by BOD members and ministry staff, who will collectively be responsible for (1) running the worship service, (2) discipling each individual and family (via their AGs), (3) taking care of the members’ pastoral needs, (4) fostering a healthy community life/culture.
Furthermore, we believe that aligning our Sunday Services by AGs will help us deepen our spiritual relationships, as well as allow the AGs to worship and serve together (please see the vision statement in the link in Q1).
We asked the Cluster and AG leaders to voluntarily decide on a time slot – not by personal preference – but out of a heart of love so that the whole church is able to return on a weekly basis. We thank God for all those who made sacrificial decisions.
No, the pastors and preaching team will continue to preach at all the services.
Our Conviction is that, as embodied persons, there is great blessing in following God’s command to gather together in person, that we cannot get virtually. This is not to say that livestream services are not without their benefits, as they have allowed shut-ins, the occasional visitor and overseas members to view the service in real time.
Our Concern is that while online services have helped people observe corporate worship in this time of pandemic – we have observed many negative effects on our members’ spiritual lives: challenges in being engaged and focused, a reduced sense of community, and a significant loss of reverence in coming before the Living God. In addition, studies have shown how social isolation has a negative impact on people’s overall well being, without them being aware of it.
No. Though we are encouraging all to come back physically for reasons stated in Q5, we will continue to provide the livestream for those who are unwell, on SHN or quarantined and thus unable to come in person – until the pandemic has ended.
Each AG has voluntarily committed themselves to a particular time slot. If you are in an AG, please check with your AG leader.
If you are not in an AG but are a member of the Church, please check with your Cluster Leader. If you are still not sure, please contact Pastor Dev (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Dn Danny (email@example.com).
If you are a regular visitor – you may join any one of the congregations, but we encourage you to be consistent in being with a specific Cluster.
You should register for that person to come with you for the same Sunday time slot.
No, but we do encourage you to go to the service that your AG has committed to, so that you can worship, fellowship and serve with your AG members.
Yes. While we encourage each member to worship, fellowship and serve with their AG at the same service, we do understand that some families with adult children are in different AGs across different congregations, and may wish to worship with their family members instead. Whatever your decision, we hope that you will settle into a stable congregation community.
In compliance with the MCCY approved plan, we must have four clearly separated zones of 50 pax, in order to hold services of up to 200 pax.
The plan dictates that we must have assigned entry / exit points into the church premises and the main sanctuary: Those sitting in the upper sanctuary will enter via the main gate, while those sitting in the lower sanctuary will enter via the back gate (facing the multi-storey carpark).
Do note that vehicle drop-off is permitted (once alighted please head directly to the upper sanctuary entrance).
Persons with mobility challenges may enter via the main gate, and head directly to the lower sanctuary entrance.
Families with young children going for CD should sit at the upper sanctuary.
Yes. CDs will run at all 4 English services in small groups – please read the FAQ here: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1UZlOvLpNSN8XUYpLqDmDQCWN6edltggfrd8XPIgjrdY/edit?usp=sharing
YD classes are also running at various timings. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for details.
Holy Communion will be conducted at all English services, the Mandarin/Cantonese Service and the Tamil Service on the first week of each month. It will be conducted on the 4th week for the Hokkien Service and on the 1st week for the Tamil Service.
Since the physical restrictions are likely to last for another year, we will need to reassess the situation once this takes place.
The 4 English congregations, together with the Ethnic congregations, will have further dialogues and prayer sessions to ascertain God’s direction going forward. However, the Shepherding Teams will continue to be responsible for the particular AGs, families & members under their care.
Again our primary motivation will be how best to disciple and care for all our members in each new season.