Sweet Madrigal Voices

No idea what “madrigal” is?  It is a style of vocal music composition or choral singing style that originated in Europe in the Renaissance and early Baroque period (or around the 16th century). Or in other words, this was the music that was making the Top of the Charts in Europe around the time the Portuguese were busy conquering Melaka.

The Philippine Madrigal Singers is a multiple award winning choir that employs the musical style but whose repertoire includes Renaissance music, Classical music, Filipino and International folksongs, contemporary and Avant-garde music, Opera and even popular music.  They are the first two time grand prize winner of the European Grand Prix for Choral Singing and were commissioned by UNESCO as Artists for Peace in 2009.

And now, the opportunity to listen to them perform live is here with us.  They will be performing at Trinity Methodist Church, Petaling Jaya, on the 5th and 6th of July at 8.30 pm.

Admission is by invitation upon donation.  Donation levels are at RM108, RM88 and RM68.  Proceeds will go towards The Trinity Methodist Church Building Fund and the Trinity Methodist Home for the Elderly.

Visit iLasso Tickets for more information.

Church Prayer (June 2012)

In accordance to our practice to have a combined prayer meeting on the last Wednesday of every month, there were no pastoral meetings this last week.  Instead 27 church members met together at the church to offer praise and thanksgiving to God and to pray.  It has been encouraging to see some new faces and numbers just below 30 for the last couple of prayer meetings.  This indicates that more are seeing the importance of meeting together for prayer.  However, we would love to see even more of the church to come to what is possibly one of the most important meetings of the church – where we pray and meet with God.

Our four elders led the service; Min Fook led us in worship singing songs of praise and thanksgiving including two songs in Bahasa Malaysia; Francis shared with us items of thanksgiving; Calvin Tan helped us focus on people, issues and items to bring to God in prayer and Tee Fatt gave the closing prayer.

We were encouraged through the reading of these two passages;

 
  
2 Chronicles 20: 15-17
15 He said: “Listen, King Jehoshaphat and all who live in Judah and Jerusalem! This is what the Lord says to you: ‘Do not be afraid or discouragedbecause of this vast army. For the battle  is not yours, but God’s. 16 Tomorrow march down against them. They will be climbing up by the Pass of Ziz, and you will find them at the end of the gorge in the Desert of Jeruel. 17 You will not have to fight this battle. Take up your positions; stand firm and see the deliverance the Lord will give you, Judah and Jerusalem. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged. Go out to face them tomorrow, and the Lord will be with you.’”
 
Psalm 29
Ascribe to the Lord,you heavenly beings,
ascribe to the Lord glory and strength.
Ascribe to the Lord the glory due his name;
worship the Lord in the splendor of his  holiness.
The voice of the Lord is over the waters;
the God of glorythunders,
the Lord thunders over the mighty waters.
The voice of the Lord is powerful;
the voice of the Lord is majestic.
The voice of the Lord breaks the cedars;
the Lord breaks in pieces the cedars of Lebanon.
He makes Lebanon leap like a calf,
Sirion like a young wild ox.
The voice of the Lord strikes
with flashes of lightning.
The voice of the Lord shakes the desert;
the Lord shakes the Desert of Kadesh.
The voice of the Lord twists the oaks
and strips the forests bare.
And in his temple all cry, “Glory!”
10 The Lord sits enthroned over the flood;
the Lord is enthroned as King forever.
11 The Lord gives strength to his people;
the Lord blesses his people with peace.
 

The passage from 2 Chronicles 20 reminds us that it is God that wins the victory.  It is He who fights the battle.  We are to obey and be ready to take our positions as directed by Him and to stand firm in our faith and He will bring things to pass according to His will.  It will not be achieved because of our efforts, our talents or our abilities.  Instead, it is God that we can rely on.  At the same time, Psalm 29 reminds us how powerful is God and how powerful is His words.  He speaks and it is so.  Together, the verses encourage us to ask for God to perform miracles and to grant things which are beyond our mortal control.

Some items for Thanksgiving:-

  • Thanks for everyone’s prayer support; the meeting on Tuesday related to possible land for a new church building went very well and the discussions are progressing to the next level.  This is a great example of something that is beyond the scope of our abilities but God is the one who works things out beyond our expectations.
  • Children’s Corner is continuing to grow.  Give thanks also for the new security door which will greatly enhance the sense of safety and security for teachers, kids and parents.
  • Youth Fellowship continues to see new people coming and their numbers are being added to each week.

Some items for Prayer:-

  • The meeting focus was to pray for evangelical and mission work.
    • Various Chinese work.
    • Ruby and those in her fellowship group.
    • NTM training program.
  • NTM programs and financial support.
  • Stuart Briscoe, one of our camp speakers, has a hectic schedule involving sharing in churches in Penang, Ipoh and Kuala Lumpur in about 6 days in November
  • Continue to pray for church building/land to be available.

Promised Land? Please Pray!

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

God has blessed our church and despite planting new churches and “exporting” members all over the globe, we find that we are again busting at the seams.  We need more space to accommodate the growing numbers that come for our worship services and for our various ministries such as the Kid’s Church, Children’s Corner, Cornerstone and Youth Fellowship.  And every time we have special programs like our Christmas concerts, we have to rent nearby auditoriums and halls with larger capacity to host the events. Larger premises will also allow more facilities for members with young children and opportunities to start new ministries or expand existing ones.

The leadership has been asking us all to pray for God to guide the church and to provide the land for a new church building or to lead us to existing premises that could be used for our purposes.  Since we have been praying the last couple of months, a couple of possibilities have been developing and we have been given an appointment for a meeting this coming Tuesday that could lead to significant progress towards one of these possibilities.

So please pray earnestly for God to make the way straight and to overcome any potential obstacles; that our leaders going to the meeting will be guided by the Holy Spirit, full of wisdom and heart; and that we as a church will be united in seeking God’s direction in this matter.

Promised land? Please pray. (and we will keep you posted on the outcome of the Tuesday meeting)

Did You Know About NECF?

Did you know that as of this year, our church, Bangsar Gospel Centre, has joined NECF Malaysia.  NECF gave us a warm welcome and acknowledge our new membership in their bulletin, Berita NECF (April – June 2012).   The picture below is from that issue.

 

 

Now some may be surprised that we were not members of NECF earlier but some of us might not even know what NECF is.

Well, NECF stands for “National Evangelical Christian Fellowship”.  NECF was born in May 1983 to bridge divisions, pool resources and to present a credible, united evangelical voice on matters of concern to the church in Malaysia.  It seeks to enable Christians within the nation live out their purpose and calling as agents of transformation in the various places and sphere of influence that God has placed and called each one to be in.

To learn more about NECF and our larger national family, visit their website or read the Berita NECF.

Father, Dad, Papa

PhotoCredit:  I Can Teach My Children.com


We may call him “Father” or “Papa” or “Dad” or something else but no matter what name we use, he is one very important and influential  person in our lives.

He is to be our provider, mentor, teacher, discipliner, defender and protector.  As head of the family, he is to be an example of God’s love for all of us as our Heavenly Father.   Of course, there is no perfect Father except God but if we have an earthly father with integrity who loves us and guides us along the right path, then we are truly blessed.

Psalm 103:13
As a father has compassion on his children, so the LORD has compassion on those who fear him;

Proverbs 3:11-12
My son, do not despise the LORD’s discipline
and do not resent his rebuke,
because the LORD disciplines those he loves,
as a father the son he delights in.

Ephesians 6:4
Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord.

Colossians 3:21
Fathers, do not embitter your children, or they will become discouraged.

Hebrews 12:7
Endure hardship as discipline; God is treating you as sons. For what son is not disciplined by his father?

Proverbs 20:7
A righteous man who walks in his integrity; How blessed are his sons after him. (NASB)

It’s a tough job.  So let us thank our Heavenly Father and give our earthly one a treat this Father’s Day (Sunday  17th June).

Praise Song: Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus & Faithful One

We had a number of interesting visitors at our church this last couple of weeks and it was gratifying to hear how they enjoyed participating in our Sunday Worship service.  One of our visitors, Oli, mentioned how he did not like 7-11 worship songs; that is, songs with seven words repeated eleven times!  Instead, he enjoyed our church’s mix of meaningful new songs and beloved hymns of old.

I think it is great that our church is able to sing both the new and the old in praise and worship to our God but this last two weeks, there have been a number of songs that were requested that were not too familiar to many of us.

So, here below, are two of the songs that kind of stumped us.  The first is the old hymn, “Turn your eyes upon Jesus”.  Many of our church members are familiar with this hymn but it seems that for decades, we have only sung the chorus!  We weren’t too sure when it came to the rest of this beautiful hymn.

The second song, “Faithful One” is a more recent song by Brian Doerksen and it has been in our songbook for years.  However last Sunday, one of our visitors had to lead us in singing that song as he was the only one confident enough about the song to do so.

So let us study these videos and add two more songs of worship to our collective repertoire.

.

.

Have a Laugh

I believe God has a great sense of humor.  I have experienced it in my life and I am sure most of you have too.  In the Old Testament, we read how Sarah also testifies to God’s sense of humor when God grants her a child in her old age – in an incident that is both joyous and humorous.

 

Sarah said, “God has brought me laughter,and everyone who hears about this will laugh with me. And she added, “Who would have said to Abraham that Sarah would nurse children? Yet I have borne him a son in his old age. ” (Genesis 21: 6-7)

 

Anyway, hope you enjoy today’s humor offering which is reproduced with permission.  Today’s thought is from 1 Corinthian 3 : 16;   “16 Don’t you know that you yourselves are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit dwells in your midst?”

 

(Copyright © 2011 The Zondervan Corporation)
By bangsarbeacon Posted in Humor

Word from the Elders (June 2012)

Matthew 2818-20 sets the missions mandate of the church of Jesus Christ. As a church in Bangsar we are committed before the Lord to fulfil Christ’s missions mandate. The task at hand is fraught with danger and difficulties. Acts 4 and 5 remind us that hostility and persecution awaits God’s church that’s seriously committed to carry out its missions mandate. We thank and praise God that the early church did not fail in fulfilling Christ’s missions mandate. It did not withdraw from the task when faced with hostility and persecution. Instead it stood resolute in fulfilling Christ’s missions mandate whatever the cost. The early Christians made a stand for God and declared that they must obey God rather than man. Likewise we too as a church in Bangsar must emulate the early church Christians. If we are to be faithful to the missions task before us, we need to be resolute in obeying God rather than man.

However as the early church Christians showed us, we are never up to the task in and of ourselves. We need God and we need God’s people. We need God to boldly stand on God’s side and overcome the overwhelming opposition lined up against us and to welcome the suffering that will surely be our portion and we need God’s people because this task is never to be done solo but as a church, as a family of God intent to be the army of God in this crucial spiritual battle. Thus together as a church we will earnestly seek God in prayer to tackle the task at hand. We will ask Him for boldness and the grace to endure suffering for Christ’s sake. We will ask Him for grace to be disciples willing to lose our lives for Christ’s sake and the Gospel’s sake.  And if we are willing to do this, then we will be ready for the challenges God will bring to us regarding His missions mandate In this month of June through His servants from NTM, IAM, local missions and those burdened for ministry in China.

Calvin Tan (Elder)

Praise Song: In Christ Alone

This song, “In Christ Alone”  has been chosen to be part of the led portion of this coming Sunday’s Worship Service which will focus on how our hope and our faith is in Christ alone.  Although this song has been sung before at our church, it has been relatively infrequent.  For the benefit of those who would like to know this song better, here it is.  Originally written by Keith Getty and Stuart Townend, this version is by Newsboys.

In Christ alone my hope is found
He is my light, my strength, my song
This Cornerstone, this solid ground
Firm through the fiercest drought and storm
What heights of love, what depths of peace
When fears are stilled, when strivings cease
My Comforter, my All in All
Here in the love of Christ I stand

In Christ alone, who took on flesh
Fullness of God in helpless babe
This gift of love and righteousness
Scorned by the ones He came to save
‘Til on that cross as Jesus died
The wrath of God was satisfied
For every sin on Him was laid
Here in the death of Christ I live

There in the ground His body lay
Light of the world by darkness slain
Then bursting forth in glorious Day
Up from the grave He rose again
And as He stands in victory
Sin’s curse has lost its grip on me
For I am His and He is mine
Bought with the precious blood of Christ

No guilt of life, no fear in death
This is the power of Christ in me
From life’s first cry to final breath
Jesus commands my destiny
No power of hell, no scheme of man
Can ever pluck me from His hand
’til He returns or calls me home
Here in the power of Christ I’ll stand

The Legacy She Left Behind

What legacy will I leave behind?  What will my daughter, my husband (although he’s convinced he will go before me!), my siblings and my friends remember me by?

I’ve probably got, by the grace of God, some years to catch up but for sure it’ll be nothing remotely close to the legacy my headmistress, Miss Elena M Cooke has left behind.

We feared but did not hate her.  She had a look that pierced your conscience and a rebuke so sharp you’d think twice before fouling up again – but it was those same eyes and tongue that showed and spoke compassion.

She could smell out the defiant, the troubled and the poor and she opened her heart and home to them and, in turn, got them to open their hearts, mend and dare dream dreams.

She taught us to strive for excellence in the most mundane and lowly of chores (like cleaning the school toilets).  She sharpened our eyes to look out for and straighten lopsided pictures on walls.  Chairs have 4 legs and all 4 legs are to be on the ground. Litter belongs to litter bins.

She taught us pronunciation (I remember being corrected when I told her the “photo-GRAPHER had come”; she said “Girl, it’s pho-TOH –grapher”!).  She drummed into us the art of articulation (that’s why every BBGS girl will proudly tell you we were the BEST in choral-speaking!).

So many more lessons and values BBGS and Miss Cooke instilled in us.  Never mind that some labelled us as “squares”.  We learnt to stand our ground as “loyal women with our race”, as our school song says.

Most of all, she introduced Jesus Christ to the thousands of girls who had the privilege of studying under her.  This must be the richest inheritance our dear Miss Cooke left to generations of girls who walked the corridors of the Bukit Bintang Girls’ School.

by Kiang Chew Peng

NOTE: BBGS School Song & Interviews with Miss Elena Cooke taken from “BBGS GOLDEN HERITAGE”