#GettingToKnowYou – BLC Council 2015-2017: Leigh Wong, Secretary & Education

retary [Since we have just installed our BLC Council for 2015-2017, we thought it would be good to get to know them better. To do that, we are posting a profile of each council member – a profile a day for the next 7 days! The profiles will cover the roles and responsibilities of each council member, as well as a short question-and-answer interview – in their own words.]

[Update, 17 Jul 2016: Leigh Wong has accepted a job position overseas; so he has stepped down as Chairperson and will serve as Secretary. BLC is delighted and proud to announce our first-ever Madam Chairperson – Rubini Murugesan!]  

Leigh35Bday

Leigh Wong is secretary of the Church Council (2015-2017), as well as the Council Member overseeing the education portfolio.

As Secretary, he is responsible for the following:

  • Chiefly responsible for maintaining the administrative records of Bangsar Lutheran Church
  • Keeps accurate minutes of all meetings of the congregation and of his or her Council in a volume provided by the congregation, and shall see to it that all necessary records are properly maintained and permanently stored, with copies of minutes of all congregational and Council meetings being sent to the Lutheran Church in Malaysia.
  • In partnership with the Council Chairperson, to follow up on action items on Church Council meeting matters.
  • Keep the membership rolls of the congregation, reporting them periodically to the Church Council and to the Lutheran Church in Malaysia. This includes being responsible for maintaining an accurate record of all baptisms, confirmations, communions and attendance at various services, classes and meetings sponsored by this congregation.
  • All necessary records shall be maintained in the Parish Registrar, which shall be and remain the property of the congregation.
  • In partnership with the Council Chairperson and Pastor, submit a written report to the Annual Meeting of the congregation and to the General Meeting of the Lutheran Church in Malaysia.

For the education portfolio, he is responsible for:

  • In partnership with the Pastor, to be chiefly responsible to encourage spiritual growth through education and lifelong learning by supervising and coordinating BLC education programmes and initiatives
  • Provides oversight to ensure Bible Studies as well as other congregational learning programmes are carried out smoothly
  • Key liaison with LCM HQ on education matters and programmes, including LBTI classes
  • To lead the Education Core/Committee, if there is one

Getting to know… Leigh!

Tell us briefly about yourself?
Well, first of all, the “Leigh” is pronounced “Lee” as in, “Tengku RazaLEIGH“. I’m happily married, to a wonderful woman whom I’ve dated since college, and we are constantly astounded and amused by our three sons. I currently lead media relations and issues management at an international energy company. No one believes me when I say that I’m actually an introvert – although I’ve very recently learned that there’s such a thing as an “outgoing introvert” (for real – look it up!).

How long have you been at BLC and what were your first impressions about it, when you first came?
I’ve been at BLC since 2004, and when we first stepped into the church, we went, “Whoa, is this a cult?! What’s with the non-descript bungalow, dark atmosphere and… is that cross made up of light boxes from IKEA?!” Now that lightbox cross is one of my fondest highlights of the church sanctuary.

What was your initial reaction to being asked to join/remain in Council?
When I was first asked in 2009, I had to decline due to ministry commitments with The Boys Brigade. I was then asked again in 2011, when I felt more of an, “All right, it’s time to commit to serve BLC as my faith community…”. Then, when I was asked whether I had any violent objections to staying on, I couldn’t think of any (well, violent ones anyway). This year, I decided to volunteer as Chairman because I saw an opportunity to serve in a capacity where I could more directly help partner with Pastor Augustin for the ministry of BLC, beyond merely managing administrative concerns. It is certainly a leap of faith for me as BLC is a wonderful, unique and unusual community. It will be a challenge to deftly maintain this unique aspect of the church while also discerning how we can propel the ministry forward.

What do you do during your free time?
This free time you speak of, it sounds familiar…

What’s your favorite…

  • Food? Nasi lemak. Once, on summer break in Malaysia, I had nasi lemak for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, 5 days in a row. #truestory
  • Drink? Wine
  • Movie? No particular one, but I’m a sucker for SciFi, fantasy and comic-related ones. (My guilty pleasure is B-grade sci-fi – Sharknado FTW!!!)
  • Smell? Babies
  • Music genre? Acoustic and vocal jazz
  • Book or literary genre? Superhero comic books
  • Conversation topic? Nonsense

What would you consider your strength(s) and weakness(es)?
I have a type-A personality, which typically results in things getting done but, unfortunately, not always with the adequate tact.

Can you share what your personal dream and aspiration is, for the next 10 years?
To have a personal dream and aspiration in the next 10 years!

What is your dream for Malaysia (or the world), for the next 10 years?
To be able to pass to my children a Malaysia based on that vision I grew up loving – a place of peace, harmony and unity; natural beauty; as well as awesome food!

What does it mean for you to follow Christ today?
Learning to actively listen to Him moment by moment… as I march to the beat of a very, very different drummer.

What do you think God is saying to you lately?
What does it mean to be a Christian in my context today – as a postmodern, urban, time-starved, family man with a corporate job?

What’s the most random thing you can think of right… NOW?
Goofy and Pluto are both dogs – but why is one different from the other?

What’s the best way(s) to get in touch with you?

#GettingToKnowYou – BLC Council 2013-2015: John Cheah, Chairperson & Education

[Since we have just installed our BLC Council for 2013-2015, we thought it would be good to get to know them better. To do that, we are posting a profile of each council member – a profile a day for the next 8 days! The profiles will cover the roles and responsibilities of each council member, as well as a short question-and-answer interview – in their own words.]

John Preaching - Camels

John Cheah has been elected as chairperson of the 2013-2015 Church Council, as well as the Council Member overseeing the education portfolio.

As chairperson, he is responsible for:

  • In partnership with the Pastor, to provide general oversight and coordination among the Church Council to further the ministry of BLC
  • To call for and chair/be the presiding officer at all meetings of the Church Council and of the congregation. (In the event of the president’s inability to perform his or her duties, he or she may appoint a Council Member to serve in his or her stead)
  • Provides oversight for church administrative matters and is chiefly responsible for the BLC Administrator’s role.
  • In partnership with the Pastor and Secretary, submit a written report to the Annual Meeting of the congregation and to the General Meeting of the Lutheran Church in Malaysia and Singapore.

For the education portfolio, he is responsible for:

  • In partnership with the Pastor, to be chiefly responsible to encourage spiritual growth through education and lifelong learning by supervising and coordinating BLC education programmes and initiatives
  • Provides oversight to ensure Bible Studies as well as other congregational learning programmes are carried out smoothly
  • Key liaison with LCM HQ on education matters and programmes, including LBTI classes
  • To lead the Education Core/Committee, if there is one

Tell us briefly about yourself?

  • Hometown: Kuala Lumpur
  • Age and/or birthday? 27 Sept
  • Occupation? Works in a bank
  • Baptism date/year? 1997
  • Single/married? Married
  • Number of Children and names? Christine (4 yo) and Daniel (1 yo)
  • Spouse’s name? Su Shen
  • If married, wedding anniversary/years married? 9 years
  • What you do for a living? Similar to (c)

How long have you been at BLC and what were your first impressions about it, when you first came?
Su Shen and I first attended BLC in mid 2003
First impressions: Cozy, warm and friendly, family centric

What was your initial reaction to being asked to join/remain in Council?
Glad for the opportunity to serve in this capacity

What do you do during your free time?
Read, play online games with children

What’s your favorite…

  • Food?
  • Drink?
  • Movie?
  • Smell?
  • Music genre?
  • Book or literary genre?
  • Conversation topic?

No favourites at this time

What would you consider your strength(s) and weakness (es)?
Strengths: Enjoys talking and eating…
Weaknesses: Excessively

Can you share what your personal dream and aspiration is, for the next 10 years?
Run my own training consultancy

What is your dream for Malaysia (or the world), for the next 10 years?
A safe place for my children to grow up in

What does it mean for you to follow Christ today?
Making a difference at the workplace

What do you think God is saying to you lately?
Uncertain… the only word that comes to me now is BALANCE

What’s the most random thing you can think of right… NOW?
Lunch

What’s the best way(s) to get in touch with you?

  • Catch me on a Sunday
  • Call: +60 16 3110 595
  • Email: johncheah[at]gmail[dot]com
  • Facebook: john.cheah.984[at]facebook[dot]com
  • Twitter: @JohnCheahSC