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Rev Dr Gordon Wong elected new Bishop of the Methodist Church

by Juleen Shaw // September 7, 2020, 5:59 pm

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Rev Dr Gordon Wong (seen here at the 2018 TRAC Annual Conference) was elected from 46 candidates at the Methodist Church’s 12th General Conference today, held online for the first time. Photos courtesy of the Methodist Church in Singapore.

Rev Dr Gordon Wong, 59, was today (Sept 7) elected the new Bishop of The Methodist Church in Singapore (MCS).

He will be consecrated on December 4, 2020, taking on the role of spiritual leader for more than 44,000 Methodists.

At the General Conference 2016, when Rev Dr Chong was elected Bishop. (L-R) Rev Dr Gordon Wong (President of Trinity Annual Conference), Rev James Nagulan (President of Emmanuel Tamil Annual Conference), Bishop Chong Chin Chung, Rev Dr Gregory Goh (President of Chinese Annual Conference).

Rev Dr Wong was elected from 46 candidates at the Church’s 12th General Conference, held online for the first time. The General Conference, from Sept 7 to 11, takes place once in every four years.

“We have learnt that the lack of a physical church building need not stop us from loving God and neighbour with heart, soul and mind.”

Since he began service as a Methodist pastor in 1986, Rev Dr Wong has served as Pastor-in-Charge of Cairnhill Methodist Church, Christ Methodist Church and Covenant Community Methodist Church, and pastor of Fairfield Methodist Church and Barker Road Methodist Church.

In 2013, he was elected President of the Trinity Annual Conference (TRAC), a connection of the 21 English-speaking Methodist churches in Singapore.

He is currently serving his second term in the role. He was also the Bishop William F Oldham Professor of Old Testament at Trinity Theological College, where he lectured on the Old Testament, Hebrew and Homiletics for 17 years.

Rev Dr Wong, whose published works include books on the relevance of the Christian faith (God Makes Sense), commentaries on the book of Daniel (Faithful to the End), Habakkuk (God, Why?), Isaiah (The Road to Peace: Pastoral Reflections on Isaiah 1– 12) and Ruth (The Power of Love), holds a BA (Honours) from the London School of Theology and a PhD from the University of Cambridge.

The most pressing role of the Church moving forward, said Rev Dr Wong, would be “to love God and neighbour together despite our different definitions of such love”.

Rev Dr Wong succeeds current Bishop Dr Chong Chin Chung, who will retire after his four-year term ends in December 2020.

“These past four years have been most meaningful, especially interacting with all the local churches of the three annual conferences, and visiting our mission fields,” Bishop Dr Chong Chin Chung told Salt&Light. “I thank God for all the leaders, their faithful service and mutual support of one another.” 

Today’s election was a smooth one, despite being conducted online, he added.

Rev Dr Wong is married to Lai Foon, with whom he has two children, Deborah and Jeremy.

“I am thankful for the Lord’s faithfulness in bringing forth Rev Dr Gordon Wong as our next Bishop. He is a faithful servant and a courageous leader with a shepherd heart. I am happy to be handing over the reins to him.”

Upon his election, Rev Dr Wong said: “May the Lord have mercy on us all as MCS faces the future together, serving the community as best we can in these still very uncertain times.”

Of the past six months of upheaval, he told Salt&Light: “We have learnt that the lack of a physical church building need not stop us from loving God and neighbour with heart, soul and mind.”

The most pressing role of the Church moving forward, he added, would be “to love God and neighbour together despite our different definitions of such love.”

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About the author

Juleen Shaw

Salt&Light Managing Editor Juleen hails from the newsrooms of Singapore Press Holdings and MediaCorp Publishing. She has had two encounters with baptismal pools. The first was at age four when her mother, who was holding her hand, tripped and fell into the church baptismal pool, taking Juleen with her. The second was when she actually chose to get baptised.