A Sunday For Children, A Farewell, And Being A Light To The Nation

It was quite a busy but blessed Sunday for us today.

For our children, Sunday School for the 2017 session kicked off today. It’s such a blessing to see our children grow up year by year. We pray that they will continue to grow in the Lord and the wonderful teacher-volunteers we have will be blessed, encouraged, and strengthened as they serve God and our BLC Family through their ministry to children.

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Photo credit: Carmen Loke

We were also blessed to have Rev. Dr. Hermen Shastri, General Secretary of the Council of Churches Malaysia, who preached a wonderful sermon on “Being A Light To The Nation”, as part of our sermon series during Epiphany. It was a good reminder that, to be a light – we are called to reflect Jesus, the True Light; and not presume to be the source of light itself.

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Photo credit: Sivin Kit

Finally, it was a bittersweet moment for us as we bade farewell to Derek and Theresa Holtby; who are returning to their home country. For the several years they have been with us, we have been blessed by their family: Derek’s talent with the trumpet as well as being a voice of conscience to us, Theresa’s wonderful kindness and graciousness, and also the wit, charm, and musical gifts of their children. We have been so blessed to have them in our midst; we are sad to see them go but are happy that this is part of God’s plan for them.

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Photo credit: Sivin Kit

 

 

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Becoming Family At BLC – Baptism, Confirmation, Membership at BLC

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We are starting this season’s round of Becoming Family (including for children) at BLC, this Sunday, 4 Oct 2015 for those who are interested in pursuing baptism, confirmation and membership at Bangsar Lutheran Church.

It will be a 12-week series, every Sunday, 8:30am-9:30am leading up to our Christmas service in December this year. Pastor Daniel will be leading the course.

You can find out more about Becoming Family at BLC here. For those who are interested in having their children baptised, you can find out more about Becoming Family – Your Child’s Baptism here.

All are welcome – please feel free to join us at The Father’s House.

4th Sunday In Advent: Love (Youth Sunday)

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Next Sunday, 22 December 2013, 10am, we will be celebrate the 4th Sunday in Advent with a Youth Service! (Learn more about the Advent season here)

What does this mean? Well, for starters, the service will be lead primarily by our young people. Come and join us this Sunday for what will definitely be an exciting service!

Scripture lessons this week:

Find out more about BLC’s Advent and Christmas 2013 celebrations here. All are welcome to join us – please invite your loved ones and friends!

Kickstarting Our Pre-Teen Sunday School! (Every 2nd and 4th Sunday)

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Greetings! The Pre-teens Sunday School began at BLC today with an exploration into… Greetings: from verbal and non-verbal greetings across cultures around the world, to the different greetings found in the Bible.

We learned why we share the peace of God at BLC on Sundays as a congregational greeting; we learned about each other’s names, ages, schools, and favourite flavours of ice cream; and then we greeted each other with a holy kiss. >.<

Just kidding!

But we did learn about that in the Bible. Last but not least, we also learned the proper way to shake hands by watching this excellent instructional video:

Join us every 2nd and 4th Sunday as we explore our world,  the world of the Bible, and become BLC BFFs with one another.

We are 9 through 12 year-old girls, boys, and camels. Be there or be… just be there. 😀

Dear Parents With Young Children In Church

This article came by way of Joyce, via Facebook: “Dear Parents With Young Children In Church.

Sunday SchoolThe children of BLC when I first encountered them in what seems like a lifetime ago (minus the adult Sunday School volunteers, obviously)

This really struck a chord with me. When my wife and I had just returned from our time overseas and were looking for a church, one of the key reasons that “clinched” the decision for us to stay at BLC was when I saw how children were a real part of our worship services. And because they were a real part of our church services, it was easier for them to become a real part of our lives.

Before we had children of our own, we helped other parents take care of their children, seeing them crawl between our feet and chairs, prevented them from falling, and even played with them with funny faces or distracting toys to help their parents keep them entertained. In fact, it was the interaction with these parents and their then-young children that my wife and I learned how to deal with ours.

So, this really encapsulates for me the original vision for the worship life of our church, especially when it comes to parents, children and families. I encourage you to read the blog in its entirety here.

When you [parents with young children] are here, the church is filled with a joyful noise. When you are here, the Body of Christ is more fully present. When you are here, we are reminded that this worship thing we do isn’t about Bible Study or personal, quiet contemplation but coming together to worship as a community where all are welcome, where we share in the Word and Sacrament together.When you are here, I have hope that these pews won’t be empty in ten years when your kids are old enough to sit quietly and behave in worship. I know that they are learning how and why we worship now, before it’s too late. They are learning that worship is important.

I see them learning. In the midst of the cries, whines, and giggles, in the midst of the crinkling of pretzel bags and the growing pile of crumbs I see a little girl who insists on going two pews up to share peace with someone she’s never met. I hear a little boy slurping (quite loudly) every last drop of his communion wine out of the cup determined not to miss a drop of Jesus. I watch a child excitedly color a cross and point to the one in the front of the sanctuary. I hear the echos of Amens just a few seconds after the rest of the community says it together. I watch a boy just learning to read try to sound out the words in the worship book or count his way to Hymn 672. Even on weeks when I can’t see my own children learning because, well, it’s one of those mornings, I can see your children learning.

I know how hard it is to do what you’re doing, but I want you to know, it matters. It matters to me. It matters to my children to not be alone in the pew. It matters to the congregation to know that families care about faith, to see young people… and even on those weeks when you can’t see the little moments, it matters to your children.

It matters that they learn that worship is what we do as a community of faith, that everyone is welcome, that their worship matters. When we teach children that their worship matters, we teach them that they are enough right here and right now as members of the church community. They don’t need to wait until they can believe, pray or worship a certain way to be welcome here, and I know adults who are still looking to be shown that. It matters that children learn that they are an integral part of this church, that their prayers, their songs, and even their badly (or perfectly timed depending on who you ask) cries and whines are a joyful noise because it means they are present.

I know it’s hard, but thank you for what you do when you bring your children to church. Please know that your family – with all of its noise, struggle, commotion, and joy – are not simply tolerated, you are a vital part of the community gathered in worship.

What Our Sunday School Kids Did For Stations Of The Cross

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In preparation for the Stations of the Cross, our Sunday School kids pulled together to put up one of the stations. 

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This colorful cross was made by the children of our Sunday School out of egg shells. Every egg represented each of our lives – cracked by sin, crushed by the world. Yet, a beautiful mosaic is formed when we see our brokenness in the context of the Cross.  

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With this Station, the kids are encouraging us to think about our lives – cracked by sin, crushed by the world. To cope, we try to cover it up, patch it back together, or simply just live defeated. However, we need to think about that heavy cross that Jesus bore to Golgotha and remember that the cross He bore was for us. Only when we can see our brokenness in the context of the Cross, will we start seeing our lives as the beautiful work of His hands.

So, please accept the invitation of our Sunday School kids to spend some time during this week’s Stations of the Cross, looking at the cross and reflecting on this thought.  

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