Love each other as I have loved you

wesley church sibu

It has been a while since I last attended a church service. By “a while” I actually mean 18 years (!!!). I stopped going when I was 13 – it used to be a family affair before that. We’ll all go for the 7:30 am English worship service followed by brunch.

I’ve been meaning to find a church that I’m comfortable with in KL and made a promise to myself that I’ll start looking last Sunday but since I was in Indonesia, today was the first day I stepped foot inside one.

wesley church

Wesley Methodist Church is a relatively small assembly in Sibu that my family goes to. It can best be described as a conservative Methodist church with strong fundamentalist teachings. The service is very orderly, quiet and steeped in tradition.

I told my dad of my intention to join them for the morning service – my dad is very involved in the church, he’s one of the ushers today so we had to go earlier. I wolfed down a huge chunk of chocolate generously spread with peanut butter (buried would be a better word, I scooped up a good quarter of the contents of the jar) and we all arrived well before the service started.

I was surprised that a lot of the older members of the congregation still recognize me. I didn’t see a lot of new faces, it doesn’t attract a lot of young people due to the reserved and orthodox nature of the church.

church sarawak

Don’t expect loud music and fervent singing, it’s all about solemn hymns with subdued piano music here. I don’t think the church believes in any music written after 1900. smirk

I did enjoy the service though. I sat beside my mom while my dad was performing his duties as an usher. I remember as a kid, we always looked forward to eating at our favorite places right after Sunday service but I quit going to church when I went to high school.

I went for brunch with my parents at my dad’s favorite kampua place after that. The kampua is quite different from Sibu’s normal kampua. It’s somewhere in between kampua and kolo mee. This is the part I miss the most, spending quality time with my parents!

church brunch

I got my mom and dad batik from Jakarta and we’re going to have a nice sit-down dinner later to celebrate Father’s Day.

It’s good to be back! :)

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24 thoughts on “Love each other as I have loved you

  1. hi hb. happy to see u spending time with ur mum. my friend took me to church few months ago when some bad things happen to me. is called -dumc- have u been there? it help me a lot. come to dumc when u come back to kl,, its in pj a friendly church and very big. :-)

    • Thanks Lisa! :)

      Yeah, I know about DUMC – it’s close to where I used to live.

      It’s called Damansara Utama Methodist Church but they split from the other Methodist denominations to become an independent church.

      This happens a lot, there’s a lot of politics involved in religion, but yeah, that’s not the point.

      Sure, I’ll give it another try when I come back. Thanks Lisa! :D

  2. Good to see you back in Sibu to spend more time with your parents especially Father’s Day. About going to church, yeah, I am a bit like you but my last time at the church was 4 years ago at New Fu Yuan Methodist Church, even though I was baptized a Catholic.
    Sorry to hear about your mom, I hope she is better now. Although not as serious, my mom was hospitalized for a heart condition last February. She is better now although movement and activities are limited due to her blindness and heart problem.
    Finally, read all about your adventures at Genting. It’s probably a good idea not to test any more of Uncle Ling’s infamous feng shui where you can win a little but ultimately the house will always win. Good luck mate.

    • Hello there Paul! :)

      Yeah, it’s good to be back for a while.

      Cheers for the concern and sorry to hear about your mom. I wish her all the best!

      Thanks bro! :D

  3. ur father looked laid-back and ur mom looks bored hehe and also ur dad is fatter from previous pic in previous post, maybe cos of his shirt is baggy here. i didnt know ur a christian till this post lol

    • Haha! Interesting observations, not really reflective of the situation though. :)

      You know what?

      I think our family has a non-photogenic gene. None of us looks good on camera. :D

      I’m not a Christian…yet, it’s still work in progress.

  4. Good to see you spending quality time with your parents HB. Heart warming photo that last one :)

    I’m not the most religious person myself. Had a 3 year hiatus from church but recently have started attending church again.

    • Thanks Vincent! :)

      Yeah, it’s good to spend time with my parents, I haven’t been back in a while and I don’t want to regret not spending time with them while I can.

  5. Praise the Lord, alleluia!!!

    Ah! That looks like Ah Kiat – the coffee shop at the end of the block where MAS office used to be. They’ve closed down the office now and moved all the way up to the airport.

    • Thanks Arthur! :)

      Yup, that’s the one – the owner has remained the same since I was in high school over there. It’s popular among Methodist students last time, not so much now, I see it attracts a more office based work crowd for lunch.

  6. Yippie, you’ve finally returned to Church! Praise God for guiding you back, Huai Bin! =)

    Pardon me for my ignorance, but I’ve always thought that there is only praise and worship in Christian Churches until I read your post. From what you wrote, could it be that it’s a little similar to a Catholic Mass?

    Regarding Churches in KL, you could check with Uncle Google for a list of them as the only one I know is the same one that has been suggested by Lisa.

    • Hey there Ciana!

      Yup, I’m trying to find a church that suits me.

      Well, it depends on the church really but Wesley Methodist Church is one that clings to tradition. It’s quite a fundamentalist church, very organized service e.g.

      1. Silent prayer and meditation
      2. Call to worship
      3. Hymn
      4. Unison prayer
      5. Pastoral prayer
      6. Prayer song
      7. Pianist response
      8. Responsive reading
      9. Sing Gloria in Excelsis Deo
      10. Scripture lesson
      11. Sermon
      12. Tithes and offerings
      13. Doxology
      14. Greetings and announcements
      15. Benediction

      It’s very much like an Anglican/Church of England church – somewhere in between that and a Catholic church (which has more “scripted events” – in gamer terms ;)).

      The breakaway churches that becomes independent do so due to politics but officially a lot just want to attract a younger congregation with more rock music and fun and games.

      Thanks, I’ll do that. God bless you Ciana! :D

      • That is exactly why I like this church- no gimmicks.
        Hb, such a blessing to see how much you’ve sobered and grown in the last 6 months.
        Still crass sometimes but grown-up.

        • Heh! Thanks mate.

          Yeah, no flashy stuff, it’s a church, not an entertainment center. That’s why I like it too, looking for the sister church in KL. :)

  7. Most folks fear about funerals as reason why they go to church. Other than that, religion is almost irrelevant.

    The same people that cried preached about Jesus this Jesus that are the same that voted corrupt govt every 5 years. Very sickening.

    It is hypocritical and that’s why I seldom attend church mass anymore and make me sick to see same hyprocrites proclaimed themselves sitting high and pretty with Jesus.

    I feel more peaceful with own prayer at home or wherever my heart tells as Jesus always be with you.

    Yes, you and Jesus always together with or without the church as middlemen.

    Why should you fear that nobody will bury your body during funeral? Jesus never impose such fear in order to believe Him.

    In fact, private funeral parlour now have cremation service for Christians with some one-off creation package fees it’s all done until the day you’re gone.

    Remember, church are man-made authorites and mostly far from Jesus teachings. Look at USA Mormon church. Jesus surely have big time casting and exorcising the sex devils out of them alone!

    If Jesus came down now and look at Church folks pretend themselves in lavish luxury wayward fake church lifestyle, what would Jesus think about them?

    Far from humble preaching style by Jesus!

    Have you ever heard Church mass praying for the poor? No! All the church leaders pray for good health for corrupt leaders running our country wild and crazy, welcoming corrupt leaders in church events especially during election fever!

    Jesus would never approve this kind of church system!

    How often you see the church fight for the hardcore poor, the sick, the handicapped, the unpriviledge folks nowadays (as what Jesus used to fought)? How about some of the rural kampong churches that left to rot, any of those Church folks dare to speak up for govt fundings?

    Is this how Church view justice done thru silence? If Jesus dared himself till get hung on cross for what he believes, nobody should tell you who is the real Christian by the amount of mass you’ve attended!

    Faith can never be measured nor the sins weighted in kilograms. Your deed to yourself and others is what matter the most. A lawyer atheist that give pro rata free legal service to the poor is far holier than a greedy corrupt church-goer politician that pretend faking himself at chuch mass fishing for sympathy votes prior to election. Fine actor indeed!

    Anyway just remember this: You and Jesus can always connected in prayer WITHOUT the church middlemen faith agent!

      • Yeah, there are a lot of churches that rakes in the dough, with pastors flying private planes and throwing their daughters elaborate million dollar 16th birthdays. It’s disgraceful since these are the same pastors that asks for donations and tithes.

        The Old Testament states that 10% should go to the church and a lot of pastors exploit that but what they forget is that the Bible ALSO says:

        1 Timothy 5:8 – Anyone who does not provide for their relatives, and especially for their own household, has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.

        I give what I feel comfortable giving. Of course I understand churches has expenditure and expenses but during the times when I need the money more for my family like NOW, I’ll just give RM 50 or a little more (not 10% like the Old Testament proscribes – there’s a reason the 10% rule was there but it’s too long to write down and not really applicable nowadays). I’m sure God would understand since it’s in the Bible itself.

        Family first, not the church.

        The Bible itself says that in the First Epistle of Paul to Timothy, Chapter 5 verse 8.

        Yup, I totally agree with you – faith is about your personal relationship with God, not the church. :)

    • Hello Lieutenant Dan Taylor.

      Yup, I *totally* agree with the gist of your comment in principle.

      It’s called the opiate of the masses for the reason – there’s a Scottish proverb that goes “Danger past, God forgotten”.

      That’s not the reason I go to church though, it’s more about quality time with my parents.

      …and bro, there’s no one who agrees with you more about “Christian” hypocrites – I’ve written a lot of blog posts about this topic. :)

      I hate those holier-than-thou people who acts like good Christians only once a week and sin for the next six days.

      I also know a lot of the high profile sex/pedophile cases in organized religion especially Catholic churches and the problem of corruption and greed and the love monetary things (the love of money is the root of all evil) plaguing certain megachurches in Singapore (also here and especially in the US).

      These megachurches also puts the pastors as “superstars” instead of putting Jesus as #1 and that has put me off church for a while until I heard something from my dad when I told him about this.

      The gist of it is – don’t look at the Christian, look at CHRIST!

      All humans sin, and I agree that your relationship with Jesus is a very personal thing. You should do what feels best to you, whether it’s church or just praying alone at home.

      In fact, the Bible itself advocates this – the New Testament (one of the disciples or Paul (Saul Paul, the persecutor of Christians before the road to Damascus fame and his letters to various churches around the world) says that you *don’t* need to go to a church (paraphrasing here).

      It’s what’s inside your heart and soul that matters.

      There are many ministries around the world e.g. Benny Hinn and several other high profile and controversial pastors that has put money before God. I won’t judge them, only God has the power to do so.

      Well, at the end of the day, I know that I’m not going coz of my mom’s condition or my dad’s wishes but coz of myself. I really do want a closer relationship with God.

      I know it can be hard sometimes with all these money loving pastors and evangelists with private jets and their spoiled 16 year old daughters throwing million dollar parties.

      …but like my dad said “Don’t look at the Christian – look at Christ”. :)

      It’s your personal relationship with Jesus that matters, and that’s what I’m doing. Cheers for comment bro and you’re absolutely right – NO ONE needs a middleman e.g. church or pastor to have a relationship with God.

    • Cheers! :)

      I know of the church. It’s an independent one that broke away from the main Methodist group, not a big fan of megachurches but will give it a try.

      Thanks JY!

      • There is Wesley Methodist in kl, near pudu.
        Trinity ain’t that bad too.
        Why I’ve not gone back in the last 10 years is still beyond myself.
        Maybe I’m just preparing to be ready.
        When God says Go, you Go!

        • Thanks for that!

          Trinity Kuching is the sister church of Wesley in Sibu, I spent my first 7 years in Kuching, I was just born in Sibu coz I was early and it was Cheng Beng. My sister is born in Kuching.

          I’m trying to find the KL sister church too – is Wesley Methodist in Pudu the one? Thanks mate! :)

  8. Hey, this is indeed a heartwarming post. May God bless u with greater & mightier things ahead as u begin a brand new season in ur life ;)

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