Lutheran-Catholic Commemoration of the Reformation 2017“From Conflict to Communion” Special Seminar

Lutheran-Catholic Commemoration of the Reformation 2017
“From Conflict to Communion” Special Seminar (English)

Time/Venue:
22 September 2017 Friday, 9am-1pm [Public Holiday for Awal Muharram]
at St Francis Xavier Church, Petaling Jaya
(Including free lunch)

Topics
> Lutheran and Catholic Perspectives on Scripture and Tradition
> Towards a united Christian witness in Malaysia

To Register:
Email: sivinkit@stm2.edu.my

Or Whatsapp
Rev Dr Sivin Kit 012-9160809
Father George Harrison 012-2601782

CLOSING DATE. 18.09.2017

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The Masai Creed

Masai-Creed

 

Creeds are an important expression of our Christian faith both individually and corporately. For some, it’s a summary of what they believe; for others, the creeds also provide a framework to reflect on the mystery of God and his actions in history. I recall a comment from a member of the church once during a low moment in his spiritual journey, he told me reciting the Nicene creed, “We believe…” uplifted him when he left so alone as a Christian. In other words, the creed in this case reconnected his individual faith journey with the corporate journey of God’s people in the past to the present.

Besides the ancient creeds, I’ve always been fascinated how Christians in different contexts would articulate their faith in God. When I first came across the Masai Creed, I was captured by its capacity to bring together both the theologically significant and the contextually authentic (in this case African) elements that reaches across time and space to us here in Malaysia too. Here is the Masai Creed below:

We believe in the one High God, who out of love created the beautiful world and everything good in it. He created Man and wanted Man to be happy in the world. God loves the world and every nation and tribe on the Earth. We have known this High God in darkness, and now we know Him in the light. God promised in the book of His word, the Bible, that He would save the world and all the nations and tribes.

 

We believe that God made good His promise by sending His Son, Jesus Christ, a man in the flesh, a Jew by tribe, born poor in a little village, who left His home and was always on safari doing good, curing people by the power of God, teaching about God and man, showing the meaning of religion is love. He was rejected by his people, tortured and nailed hands and feet to a cross, and died. He lay buried in the grave, but the hyenas did not touch him, and on the third day, He rose from the grave. He ascended to the skies. He is the Lord.

 

We believe that all our sins are forgiven through Him. All who have faith in Him must be sorry for their sins, be baptized in the Holy Spirit of God, live the rules of love and share the bread together in love, to announce the Good News to others until Jesus comes again. We are waiting for Him. He is alive. He lives. This we believe. Amen.

I wonder what would a Malaysian Creed look like? I suppose this would be a work in progress where we might see one formulation some day. For now, I would recommend the Maasai Creed as one way to connect us with our fellow Christians in the African continent and Christians as a global community. Perhaps as we reflect deeper about our faith through the lenses of the Nicene Creed – and the Masai Creed in this complex and yet beautiful country like Malaysia, we would find some clarity how to articulate our faith as Christians in our time and space too.

 

~ Rev Dr Sivin Kit

Sermon Series: The End Is In Sight! (#CountdownToDoom2015)

The End Is In Sight

As we move towards the end of the liturgical year towards Doom/Christ The King Sunday, we will embark on a series of thematic Scripture Readings to guide our hearts and thoughts in preparation.

(Doom Sunday – also known as the Feast of Christ The King – is the last day of the church liturgical year. “Doom” in old English meant “Judgment” or “Destiny”. The whole month focuses on the 2nd Coming of Christ and the Final Judgment.) 

DATE TIME TOPIC READINGS SPEAKER
1 Nov 10 am 3rd Sunday Before

Doom Sunday

OT: Deuteronomy 6:1-9

NT:  Hebrews 9:11-14

Gospel: Mark 12:28-34

Pastor Augustin
8 Nov 10 am 2nd Sunday Before
Doom Sunday
OT: Job 14:1-6

NT: I Thessalonians 4:13-18

Gospel: Matthew 25: 1-13

Rama Ramanathan
15 Nov 10 am Sunday Before
Doom Sunday
OT: Daniel 7: 9 -14

NT: 1 Thessalonians 5: 1-11

Gospel: Matthew 25:31-46

Pastor Daniel
22 Nov 10 am Doom Sunday OT: Isaiah 35:3-10

NT: 2 Peter 3: 8-14

Gospel: Matthew  25:14-30

Pastor Augustin

If you’d like to follow or respond to the messages via social media, please hashtag it as #CountdownToDoom2015. Find us at:

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REMINDER – Worship & Liturgy Seminar – Session 2, 24 Oct 2015

Reminder – session 2 of our Worship & Liturgy seminar hosted by Bangsar Lutheran Church will proceed tomorrow 24 October 2015, from 9am – 1pm at The Father’s House, Bangsar Lutheran Church. An RM25 fee will be levied to offset costs for materials and lunch.

Taught by Rev. Augustin, the seminar will cover topics that include:

  • Worship in the Bible
  • Worship in the Early Church
  • Contemporary Worship
  • Lutheran Worship
  • Lutheran Liturgy
  • Adapting the Lutheran Liturgy
  • The Liturgical Year
  • Practical Helps on being Worship Lead / Liturgist.

This seminar / workshop will be good for all those in the worship ministry as well as others who may be interested. This is an open event – so, even if you’re from another church you are welcome to join us!

For Bangsar Lutheran Church worship leads and other worship enablers, attendance is compulsory.

Please email Rev. Augustin at revaugustin[at]yahoo[dot]com for enquiries or for more details.

Christ Alone: The Inclusive Gospel of Christ – Rev. Augustin

Slide2

In the world of the first century, the gospel encountered many kinds of people.

Many of the cities that the Gospel encountered were actually quite cosmopolitan, with different races, and different classes, of people interacting in their daily routine. There were Jews and Gentiles, rich and poor, slave and free, masters and merchants, rulers and the ruled – all sorts. Even with all this intermingling there were still strict rules – slaves could not sit at table with their masters, for example. The rich would not patronize the same shops as the poor. The nobility jealously guarded their bloodlines and heritage. It was a society that had many divisions and inequalities. In order to belong, one had to have certain prerequisites.

The Gospel of Jesus was radical because it was inclusive. There were no prerequisites. As Paul puts it, in Christ there is no Jew and Gentile, slave or free. The salvation of Christ was available to all, and not just a special few. The rich and the poor alike could hear the gospel, turn to Christ and believe.

But the inclusive nature of the gospel did not end there. The gospel of Jesus was the great leveler. Rich and poor alike sat at the same table for the fellowship meal. Slave and free alike sang together and prayed together. The same water that baptised the nobility baptised the common folk as well. All ended up in the same church with no divisions, only Christ. Jew and Gentile alike were co-inheritors of the heavenly inheritance.

That is not the end of the story, however. The Gospel of Jesus was not just available to all and level all differences, it also created a new people – a Christian people. As Peter put it, once you were not a people, but now you are the people of God – a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God. As Peter preached on the first day of Pentecost, the list of countries mentioned there reads like a who’s who of the nations in that time. Yet out of all those different backgrounds, 3000 people were baptised that day and the church was born – a church with one people – a people belonging to God.

Great beginnings, indeed. Sadly, of course, since then we have come a long way in putting back those pre-requisites, raising those divisions, and segregating the one people into many different kinds of people. We have to wonder sometimes whether we are committed to Christ alone without demanding pre-requisites, insisting on divisions or even raising ourselves one over the other. How could we? For we are all in the same boat, equally sinful, equally needing Christ alone.

Christ Alone: The Distinctive Offer of Christ – Rev. Augustin

Slide2

As the gospel went out into the known world, it encountered people from all kinds of religions and philosophies – particularly people from a Greco-Roman religious background. Many of the religions that the gospel encountered concerned man trying to placate the gods.

The greco-roman gods were a capricious lot – given to mood swings, internal bickering, eating, drinking and generally more concerned about themselves than about the world. The most a person could hope for was, even if the gods were not in favor, that they would leave him alone. Thus, a person’s religious obligations would consist of placating the gods with the right rituals, sacrifices, etc. so that they would not be inclined to zap him when in a niggly mood!

When the philosophers came in, they began to reject the idea of religion in favour of man’s ability to make his own way in this world, in effect trying to provide answers for the questions of life without resorting to religion. But for many people, relying on their minds to provide answers did not work out so well either and they were left empty without any source for help.

Into this space came the very unique and distinctive gospel of Jesus Christ – For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him, may not die, but have eternal life. The distinctiveness was in three very bold and radical truths.

Firstly, God loved the world. Unlike the gods of the time, God, the Father, loved His creation. He was not absent. He was not busy with His own agenda. He was not indifferent. He actually loved His creation. This was a radical notion at the time.

Secondly, God’s love was so great that He took the initiative to reconcile man to Himself. The Christian faith was not about man reaching out to God, it was about God reaching out to man.

Thirdly, this gospel was for ‘whoever believes’ – no other qualification was required. For those gentiles who were attracted to the message of the ‘one God’ of the Jews, the most they could hope for was to be proselytes. They could never be ‘Jews’ – and by extension, God’s true children. But here was God taking the initiative and saying – you do not need to be ‘pre-qualified’ – race, religion, righteousness, circumcision, etc. This invitation is for all.

Powerful indeed was this very distinctive gospel of Jesus in the context of the first century. Powerful indeed is this distinctive gospel in our own times.

Christ alone!