BPCIS Update, 30 June 2024

MISSION ACCOMPLISHED? Imagine an ocean liner sailing from 1914, before the World Wars, into the new millennium, till 2009, before it morphed into a “ship hotel” berthed on reclaimed land. Such is the amazing story of MV Doulos, for a time owned by Operation Mobilisation (OM), taking the gospel to 601 ports in 108 countries around the world! 

In a week’s time, 70 pastors, elders and ministry leaders will meet in Bintan, in the refurbished ship, for our annual BPCIS Retreat (8-9 July). Appropriately, our speaker is Lawrence Tong, International Director of OM, and our theme “Mission Accomplished—Not Yet” comes from the words of Jesus:

“And this gospel of the kingdom will be proclaimed throughout the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come.” Matt 24:14 ESV

The gospel has yet to reach every ethnic group, but with the pace of globalization, the reach of the internet, and the mass movements of peoples, will it happen in our generation? 

MISSION NEEDS PEOPLE. The month of camps is over. Thank the Lord for our churches that crossed straits to Malaysia and Indonesia to bond as a community and to refocus on our mission. Almost every one of our 11 churches is calling for more staff, both ministry and pastoral staff. This is a good sign; it shows that God’s work is growing. 

But it’s good only when the call is heeded. The Apostle Paul teaches that Christ, the head of the Church, gave gifts: “And he gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the shepherds and teachers, to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ….” Eph 4:8, 11-12 ESV. Do we believe that to every local church Christ the head has given gifted men and women to serve, equip and build up the body? 

Recently I have been encouraged to hear of young people planning to go into vocational ministry (“full-time ministry”) after serving out their bonds, and older ones planning early retirement to go for theological studies to serve in lay capacity (without remuneration). If you believe the Lord is calling you, there are apprenticeship programmes in our churches where you can serve for a limited period while seeking God’s direction. Contact me for details. 

LOOKING FORWARD. Pastors’ Wives Fellowship will meet Saturday, 6 July. BPCIS Games Day will take place Saturday 20 July. Our post-Retreat no-agenda lunch will follow on Tuesday 6 August. Finally, our Annual Presbytery Meeting will be held on Saturday 21 September, with guest speaker Tim Weerasekera on “AI and Implications for Church and Ministry”. Please uphold these events with your prayers and participation. 

Pastor David Wong
General Secretary, BPCIS

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