Installation Last Sunday in the Christmas service at Sembawang, by the grace of God, we also had the joy of installing Rev Mark Tay as pastor to minister to the congregation there.
Following the Bible Presbyterian form for such events, we first read to him a scriptural charge before the congregation. This was taken from 1 Peter 5:1-4. To seal the sacramental vocation, a series of questions were then addressed to both the pastor and the congregation; all of which were answered in the affirmative. We then prayed with the laying on of hands on Rev Mark Tay to consecrate the installation to God.
Pastor Mark Tay is no stranger to the BP church . During his school days in the sixties, he was with Life BP Church at Gilstead Road and was active in the youth group. He dedicated himself to the Lord’s service at the church camp in 1966. He later joined another church which sent him for Bible training at the Prairie Bible Institute in Alberta, Canada. He went on to Southeastern Bible College in Alabama, USA where he graduated with B.A in Bible and Theology .
He gives us the following insight into his years overseas: “Throughout my years overseas from 1970-1976, besides studying in the bible school, I would be spending my entire summer visiting among supporting churches in the southern states of USA. I was involved in children’s work, Vacation Bible School, Sunday School, Children’s and Youth Camps, revival meetings, radio ministry, Bible correspondence work, Missions conferences, etc.” He was ordained by a group of pastors in South Carolina before his return to Singapore, where he pastored his church from 1976-2001.
From 2001, Pastor Mark went on an extended sabbatical. One of the main reasons was to take care of the spiritual needs of his family. He and his wife Christina have six children — Andrea, Rebekah, Teresa, Timothy, Gail and Fiona. They were very happy and contented as they served the Lord together in the early years of his ministry. But as his church responsibilities increased, and his children grew, he became greatly stretched. He felt that the Lord wanted him to take the time to minister to his family. The church agreed to his request and he stepped down as Pastor in 2001.
As he tended to his family and continued in church work, the Lord led him to “tent making” as a real estate agent. This was a new ministry for him which enabled him to reach out to many people in the marketplace, and through one of his clients, he was introduced to the Christian Business Men’s Committee (CBMC). This further gave him the opportunity to minister to the professionals and business people.
The Lord led Pastor Mark and family to Sembawang BP Church in mid-2009, where he has been worshipping with us ever since. We are thankful to the Lord for sending Pastor Mark to us in His own good time to take up the pastoral ministry of the Sembawang congregation. The Elders have interviewed him and commend him for this appointment.
He shares with us: “After prayerful consideration, I felt God’s peace that this is indeed His will for me to take up the pastoral ministry with Sembawang BP Church. I know that there will be many challenges ahead but I am reminded and assured that His grace is sufficient for me.”