By Ps Dev Menon
Colossians 1:28 Him we proclaim, warning every-one and teaching every-one with all wisdom, that we may present every-one mature in Christ.
Last Saturday, more than 70 leaders (Session, BOD, Staff & AGLs) met for a half day retreat. We spent much of the morning reflecting on the state of Zion Bishan, using the words of Jesus Christ to the 7 churches in Revelation 1-3. This affirmed our conviction to prioritise the spiritual growth of every individual that joins our church – towards maturity.
Zion Bishan is a very different church from 10-20 years ago. We now have around 1500 members (not including regular worshippers and children). As such, the way we organise ourselves becomes even more crucial: to ensure realistic pastoral care (Exodus 18) and the proper discipleship/equipping of every-one, so they can fight in spiritual warfare
(Numbers 1-2 & Revelation 7).
We reiterated that our church is now operating a congregational model, with 8 distinct congregations, each led by their own CST (congregational shepherding team). The role of the CST is to ensure the spiritual growth of every-one in their congregation – via recruiting, training, and supporting AG leaders who will be confident and able not only to facilitate groups, but to ensure a reasonable amount of personal discipleship for every-one that joins their AG.
In addition, the CST will need to minister to every-one who is not yet in an AG (for various reasons); as well as handle pastoral issues beyond the capacity of the AGLs. This works best when the CST relationally-knows every-one who comes under their congregation, and vice versa.
We acknowledged that we are some distance from this ideal, and much work needs to be done to sort out operational issues, consider family structures, increase CS/AG leader training & engagement, and minister to the very real ‘grief’ that is triggered by any change.
The discussions went on for a long time, but in the end, I think we moved one step closer to a common vision. We thank the Lord for leading and guiding us thus far, and we look forward to the next season!