Saturday Ladies' Bible Study: Interview with Chan Yoke Meng
Chan Yoke Meng (wife of Tony Chan) has been actively involved in leading the Saturday ladies' Bible study for quite a few years. Together with Esther Chan, they are involved in a weekly inductive study of the Scripture. In this post, we interview Yoke Meng regarding the faithful ladies who come for Bible study, how it got started and how we can pray for their needs:
1. Good morning, Yoke Meng! Please describe the Saturday ladies' Bible study at GBC.
Hello to all the readers on the blog! We have been using and still using the Precept Bible Study materials for our study. Most of the time we do a study on the books of the Bible. Once in a while, we do a topical study like studying the covenant. The workbook provides 5 days of homework and the facilitator runs through each lesson with the group before we listen to Kay Arthur teaching from a DVD.
2. Could you give us an idea of how this bible study got started and what it aims to achieve? What is the purpose of an all-ladies' bible study?
This study was introduced to us by Susan Griffith many years ago. When she left GBC around the time of my retirement from a teaching career, I took on the challenge to continue gathering the ladies to come to study. At that time, it was difficult for people to join other Bible studies like Bible Study Fellowship (BSF) as they had a long wait list! So, I started a class at GBC for our ladies' convenience to save them the trouble of hunting around for a class. Also, most people prefer to come to their home church rather then to travel somewhere else to study the Bible.
The purpose is of course to get people to study God's Word and to discover truths for themselves.
We actually started with a morning class so the ladies could come. The advantage of having an all-ladies class is sometimes they feel freer to share without the men around. It is also easier to make the applications relevant to them.
3. What is the greatest challenge to keeping this study going? Conversely, what is the greatest encouragement? Could you name one of each?
Initially, we came together on a weekday morning but gradually realised that there were some who were interested to join us who had day jobs. One or two even have to work on Sat mornings. So we changed it to a Sat afternoon according to people's needs.
However, Sat afternoon is family time, as well as as time to catch up with housework for most people so it can be a challenge for some to come regularly.
For me, the greatest encouragement is to hear the ladies' testimonies at the end of each study when they share what they have learned and how their lives have been impacted by God's word.
4. How can we pray for this ministry, that it may keep bearing fruit?
Pray that the ladies will find time to do their homework diligently. You know how it is - with a full time job, caring for children and some for elders as well, it can be difficult. Pray also for more to come forward to be facilitators.
5. How could an interested person get involved in this ministry?
If a person would like to join us, they can approach myself or Esther Cher. We welcome any one even when we are in the middle of a book study. When we start a new book we usually put a note in the church bulletin. If a person would like to help us facilitate the lessons she can talk to me and I can explain what is involved in this ministry.