Adventist church schools in Singapore reach more than students
Like all mothers, Wang Lihong, Lia Hai Ying and Wei Yan Li want their children to have the best future possible and for them the means to do that is through education. With their children, they left China over two years ago for an opportunity of an education in Singapore but they found much more than a textbook could supply.
Since they entered the country on a ‘companion pass’, they cannot be employed in Singapore and depend on what their worker husbands send them from home. They never heard about Jesus until they enrolled their children at the San Yu Adventist School (SYAS).
The women were invited to a Bible study group where they fellowshipped with the members of the Thomson Chinese Church-Chinese Adult Ministry. Peter Foo, the senior pastor and adviser for the spiritual department of the school, facilitated a few Bible study sessions alternating with his assistant, Elder Fam, and other group leaders. The group uses modules entitled Search for Certainty.
"Through this class, I know the love of God and the people in church are always happy, praying and singing. That's what I want (that) I cannot find in my life,” said Lia Yai Ying who attends a Chinese fellowship class on Saturday afternoons.
"I (carried) burdens and challenges when I came to Singapore. I didn’t have money and no school accepted my daughter but San Yu Adventist School and Thomson Chinese Church were kind to accept my daughter into the school. The church members pray(ed) for me... Therefore, I found the hope and peace in Christ,” said Wei Yan Li.
On occasions like a holiday trip back home or through communication over the internet, these ladies would share the gospel with their friends in China as well as their friends in Singapore. Because of the lively participation of these women, the church grew (to 50) with interested visitors and new members.
“They learn fast and are smart as they can memorize church history and have finished reading the Bible in a year. Since they have never given any emphasis to religion in the past, they readily accepted the gospel of Christ,” said Foo.
Members in Thomson Chinese Church are mostly transient like these ladies who have to return to China after their children are done with school in Singapore.
Foo added, “We cannot always strategically plan for them to later serve the church in Singapore as leaders since most of our members cannot stay permanently. The ministry of our church is like a training center for these new members with the hope that they can continue to serve and sow the seed of gospel wherever they go.”
On October 4, Pastor Foo performed their baptism as these three women gave their hearts to Christ as a result of this partnering between school and church in Singapore. So now wherever they may go, they will carry with them a relationship with Christ, a solid Bible understanding and lessons in faith that will last beyond a lifetime.
SYAS is a fully self-supporting school owned and operated by the Seventh-day Adventist Conference in Singapore. It is a product of a merger between San Yu High School and the Seventh-Day Adventist School-Singapore with a history that spans for a century since its beginning in 1907 when it was then called Eastern Training School. Today SYAS has an enrollment of over 400 students from 21 countries as the school imparts its philosophy (Thy Word is Truth) in sharing truth through education from God's Word - the Bible.
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