It has been a long "winter." Just when we thought that spring was round the corner, this season kept getting longer. Our lives have been disrupted. For some, it has been severe.
Our common life as a church was also affected. Working within the restrictions for each phase, we have experienced creativity and resourcefulness as the worship life of the church was kept afloat. While diminished in form, it was not in spirit. Revd Joseph You spent a year with us (2020) and it was always be too short with all the restrictions. But many of you will treasure his warmth and heart in his pastoring. Then as 2021 began, I came into the picture. We meet each other - behind masks. We gathered onsite with the various restrictions, only to retreat to online again for about a month with the Delta surge. I will always treasure the post-Service "getting to know you" meetings at the Conference Room. Somehow, the dynamics of the meeting was such that there were often deep and personal conversations. Those conversations were invaluable.
I should also mentioned that our Worship and Music (Zimrah Ministry) were stellar in their commitment and have been flexible and adaptive with the changing needs. Having to serve in two services every weekend, whether recorded or "live" was demanding. And then there was a the 24-hours window "ART" testing season.
It is no wonder that we can all breathe a sign of relief (or shout a whoop of joy) when singing and eating is finally allowed from 29th March. Church life is almost returning to normal. I am sure that some of you are not out of the woods yet, may it be challenges in your career, health, studies or the need for elder-care. Undoubtedly, the social and emotional effects of "long covid" will remain with us for some time to come. We need to continue to be compassionate, understanding and support each other.
That said, we will always have good reasons to celebrate. We can almost hear the words of Nehemiah (chapter 8) that this is not a time to weep, but to rejoice. This weekend, it will be my privilege to cook and give a meal treat after each Service. A few of our ladies will also be chipping in. Something local and something nice. It will also be Holy Communion weekend.
We recall the early church (Acts 2:46,47):
And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they received their food with glad and generous hearts, praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to their number day by day those who were being saved.
Amen. May this also be true of MPCC. See you soon.