Pause or Reset – First Anniversary
Written by Ps Zheng Haoren
One year has passed since our nation embraced Circuit Breaker measures. In WIS Apr 2020, I had posed the question “Should we maintain the attitude of riding through this pandemic and reverting to our usual intense lifestyles again?” Eight months later, in WIS Dec 2020, I then queried “Do we prefer the world we have found at the end of this year or do we still prefer the world we had left behind?” Any thoughts?
Another four months have passed. Personally, I prefer the current “new world” 😊 It’s somewhat slower and healthier, saner even. We are now on another stage of the Phase 3 Circuit Breaker Reopening. Our pastors and ministry staff came together on Tuesday past for an in-person Staff Meeting, after a year of “Zooms”. I liked that, partly because we get to meet in the Chapel – more legroom for all.
So once more the question begs, “Will things ever be the same again as in pre-Covid times?” A research paper released in Jan 2021 had these findings: (1) Disruption will accelerate – the global impact of this pandemic will accelerate pre-existing transitions; (2) Politics will become more turbulent – fundamental questions about competence, nationalism, multilateralism, and democracy have resurfaced; (3) Pandemic habits will persist – we will see more robots, practice of telemedicine, and digital business & commerce; and (4) Opportunities will abound – in developing better healthcare systems & infrastructure, and tackling climate change. More details @https://theconversation.com
Well, we have to accept that things will never be the same again. We are in a “Reset” time zone in global history. Is this a new experience? Not at all, considering that the world has undergone 4 industrial revolutions and 3 eras of protestant missions in the last 250 years.
What is the main change at Zion Bishan? It is the way we do church, so to speak. The 7 Apr 2020 national Circuit Breaker implementation quickly led us to discover serious gaps in our pastoral care structure in the English Services. We immediately recognised the strengths of our Ethnic Services arrangements and learned from them. We have now more or less settled into four English Service Congregations.
How are we doing currently? Logistical arrangements are in place and we need to persist in being flexible and cautious in adapting to the gradual relaxation of rules and restrictions as a result of the national vaccination programme. As a Church, being the body of Christ remains unchanging. We have now an extended vision: A City on a Hill, A Light to the Nations – A Christ-witnessing Church with Multiple Congregations to serve Communities. That is what we aspire to be. May God help and enable us to live out the spirit of One Church, Multiple Congregations!