I am like many others stood by Pastor Kong and the other 5 accused since day 1 of the trial started. I came to accept Christ in 1999 at CHC and have ever since been actively involved in cgrp and ministry.
Like most, we found our other half here, got married and started a family. My wife and I gave our youth – energy and monetary sacrifice ever since the Building Fund started. We often got persecuted for our faith. Faith when we do not have enough money to eat or even to take the bus back home. My parents will always tell me why do I want to make myself so difficult in giving to the building fund and have not enough or no money even for basic living expenses. I told her as a student, I am more than blessed and I am giving for the future, for our building. The famous saying goes “if we build God a house, he will build ours…” and also “the future is ours…”
And true enough we got our building in JW, which was a testament in those times which was unheard of in the Christian domain. We ran through a lot of problems such as contractors running away halfway and things not ready even up to the day whereby service was to start. But we still stood up and rise to the occasion together with Pst Kong and Sun. Things then wasn’t just about pledging and just giving to the building fund. It was about rising up and be counted, to be part of God’s plan to build a church debt free…..
I can still remember shortly after a year, we were told that JW was not big enough and we were holding multiple services to accommodate the growing congregation and thus Building Fund have to be raised again. Basically, we needed a new land and building. The Arise and Build campaigns were challenging, we were giving almost every year in that window, often in tears when we run to the front and put our pledges. It was sacrificial. It was holy. It was our life and commitment. But I believe what we have received outweighs more than what we have given and therefore, I am not bitter or resentful about the giving part to the church. What was unacceptable to me was how the church dealt with the information and its accountability to the members.
Clearly since the trial started, we are often told to be in unity and love one another, messages and sermon in CHC became like a week in “unity bonding” week out “forgiveness” theme. When questions were raised to our zone pastors, it was normally very superficial and touch and go kind. We were told not to ask any more questions as this is a court case or simply they will use “I cant comment any further but just leave it to God and pray about it.”
It became a struggle, a void because we were told to stand strong for 4 years! And to pray and believe the accused. I had doubts, most of us had and even when those forerunners of faith that left the church, we questioned why did they leave. They were branded as haters, had issues with God and church. But when I look at them and how the conduct themselves, I thought to myself – are you really sure? These people were cell leaders, musicians, key ministry leaders that fought even inch and centimetre with Pastor when the church began. Have they really lost it or do they really have deep underlying issues, that was what was running in my head.
No. They weren’t. They probably had seen things not seen or experienced by members like me and 29,000 of us did. I was not naïve, I just decided to stick around and banter with the rest, praying and believing for God to work HIS hand on the church. And so, Pastor Kong maintained his integrity on stage was his signal to us that he will give his side of story before the court.
Have he? Disappointingly no… I could count Brother Foong to sleep just based on the dialogue he gave in court a few days back…commonly used “I do not know/ I cant remember”, “I leave it to the board members to make those decisions….” Is this maintaining his integrity? Or maintaining status quo – as if nothing have ever happened?
These 3 weeks or so have been a revelation to most of us, if not sensational to the press who are having a field day. What we have read on the news be it mainstream or City News have given us an insight of how the church was run, managed and who are the people actually pulling the strings behind. What is their motivation? What is their role involved? Some questioned you might ask…
But the biggest question is what have they done to disclose to their members? We as members were simply cajoled like sheep back to the pen when we wandered out seeking for answers. They did not protect us, they did not bother…….we were simply on our own.
I guess we are all looking for closure and to move on with our lives….and I know of many still sitting on the fence, pretending nothing have ever happened or “let the dust settle down” attitude.
I beseech you to make a choice and to come to reality. Make a rational choice on what facts are presented to you and not rely on past emotions or sentiments. Please do not even listen to others on saying “you should leave the church now, don’t you get it? They are liars and deceivers!” BUT rely on God to put forth that conviction in your heart whether you stay in CHC or leave. DO NOT SIT ON THE FENCE ANYMORE…..the time is near and sooner or later the choice you make will be an even heavier one.