GB has played a large role in my life since the age of 9. My life in GB has become a special journey where I have developed and grown from a young leader to the mature and confident adult I am today. I have gained many invaluable and inspiring lessons from the weekly badgework lessons. I thank God for blessing me with the gift of music as it is an honour to serve and glorify Him through playing the piano, violin and singing during GB worship sessions. I was inspired to compose The Girls’ Brigade International 125th Anniversary Theme Song, ‘Celebrate in Girls’ Brigade Together’, to testify God’s fruitful and overflowing love throughout the past 125 years as girls’ lives have been transformed and enriched all around the world. As we celebrate with this song, may we all remember His love for us will guide us through every situation in our lives.
The Girls’ Brigade Singapore Anniversary Celebration Dinner was held at Shangri-La Hotel Island Ballroom on Sunday, 3 September 2017. It was certainly a wonderful time for Girls’ Brigade members, Alumni and friends (all 990 of us) as we celebrated GB, where memories of food, fun, fullness and fellowship abound.
Our Guest of Honour was the Minister for Foreign Affairs, Dr Vivian Balakrishnan. Mrs Joy Balakrishnan also graced the occasion. Celebrating with us were representatives from the Ministry of Education, Heads of Uniformed Groups, Church and School Leaders, our Past GB Presidents, Brigade Chaplains and our partners in the ministry.
We were especially honoured to have with us, the leaders of The Girls’ Brigade International. The International President’s Committee members present were Ms Vivienne Aitchison, International President, Mrs Lynne Rogers, International Treasurer, and International Vice-Presidents of the five Fellowships: Mrs Priscilla Penny (Africa), Mrs Tay Poh Imm (Asia), Mrs Hazelann Boreland and Ms Quindell Ferguson (Caribbean-Americas), Dr Claire Rush (Europe) and Mrs Renelle Neale (Pacific). We also had leaders and representatives from Girls’ Brigade Asia: Chairperson Nancy Shaw (Hong Kong), President Tnay Yong Hua (Malaysia), President Imelda Casuga (Philippines) and Executive Member Mrs Lawan Pitakton (Thailand).
The highlights of the Celebration were the naming of the GB orchid – Papilionanda The Girls’ Brigade Singapore and the launch of our GB Aspirational Values through a meaningful and beautiful sand art presentation by Ms Tan Sock Fong. God’s amazing grace led 11 harpists (from ages 13 to 78 ) to perform together after only six lessons on the harp! Our GB girls also did us proud through their tin whistle performance. Members from the 53rd, 71st and 72nd performed three hymns.
There was a gift of a book for everyone. ‘Rainbows in the Rain’, a GBS 90 Anniversary Publication, is a legacy from the late Captain of 45th Singapore Company, Ms Sally Wong. Girls, whose lives Sally had impacted, worked tirelessly together with their Chaplain, Dr Sandra Tan and Sally’s family, to put together a book, a tribute to their beloved mentor and friend. Dr Low Guat Tin wrote and connected the stories to bring forth a publication that is a compelling read.
GBS honoured two ladies for their sterling work in GB. Mrs Tay Poh Luan and Ms Hee Piang Chin received the Distinguished Award.
The video presentation showcasing the various GBS 90 Anniversary events and achievements of Girls’ Brigade Singapore was an exciting visual. It captured the milestones of the ministry. We thanked God for His faithfulness throughout these 90 enriching years as we raised our voices to proclaim to God – “How Great Thou Art!” Aptly, we ended the night of celebrating God’s goodness with our Girls’ Brigade vesper ’Captain Divine’.
To God Be the Glory.
Mrs Tay Poh Imm,
Chairperson, 90th Anniversary Celebration Dinner
GBS Brigade Vice-President and International Vice-President, Asia Fellowship
Greetings from Vice-President of Asia
From the day we are born into this world, we all begin running a race. The race of life is not a sprint but a marathon. Running a marathon requires endurance. We must train well and develop physical strength as well as strength of character, so that we will be fit to endure the challenges for the long journey. For life’s race, we need to equip ourselves with the best so that we will be able to complete the RACE.
Relationships – We need to choose our friends wisely. It is helpful to have friends who call out the best from us and encourage us when we are down. Cultivating strong friendships will help us keep our confidence and self-esteem as we grow to understand ourselves and our giftings. Humility helps us to keep a realistic balance and view of ourselves. Glean the best from those around you who are experienced and wise. Accept their counsel and advice.
Attitude – We must be constantly searching for knowledge, growing and developing ourselves to be life – long learners. We need to set our goals as they help us chart the milestones in our Life. As we recognise our giftings, use and share them in our areas of influence, we will find the journey purposeful. We need to be accepting of others and allow them to grow and develop too. We will gain more strength and resilience along life’s journey so we will need to constantly review and be aware of the changing landscape around us. A good, positive attitude in life will keep us from unnecessary worry and fear. We need to be aware of our challenges and find ways of overcoming them. Be open to receiving help from others.
Commitment and Courage to Complete – In the marathon of life, it is comforting to know that God has given each one of us a different race. We do not need to compete and strive with anyone else. Engaging in unhealthy competitions cause much stress and unhappiness. God wants each one of us to align to His plan and purposes for us and complete the race set before us with commitment. There are others who will journey with us but our goal should be to complete our race and not compete. There are different seasons in life where we will move at a different pace. Be accepting of these times and circumstances. We must continue to move on courageously, confidently and purposefully amidst trials and complete the race set before us.
Excellence – In all our endeavours, we must be excellent in everything good and put away things that cause us to stumble and fall. Keep focus and keep faith.
“Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, … let us run with endurance the race that is set before us…” (Hebrews 12:1)
May God enable each one of us to complete our RACE as we trust Him to guide us.
Tay Poh Imm (International Vice-President, Asia)
Hong Kong’s Joint GB Camp
We just had our GB Joint Camp on 1-2 of May, our camp echoed with the GB International theme 2016 – Be Courageous. We had all together 60 young girls and more than 30 elders joined the camp. Participants were divided into 8 groups, with both the navigator (elders) and junior cadets in each group. They had to finish different tasks and complete some challenging games together. All these aimed at encouraging them to step out of their comfort zone, loving and respect one another who they didn’t know well.
We had a camp song for this event named ‘We can do all things’. Every time when we sang it with actions, the whole venue was immediately filled with joy and energy! Everyone became a powerful child in Jesus’ love and grace, despite all the physical or ageing limitations.
One of the activities we had – The 5 love languages, they had to finish 12 different tasks with whom they met in this camp, including writing cards to cheer them up and drawing little pictures to express appreciation to them. Through the one-hour game, they learnt to serve and to be served, understand and to be understood, and care for one another including themselves.
It was very impressive and encouraging to see that the navigator and junior groups went on very well throughout the camp. Despite the big gap in ages, there were no generation gap in communication and daily activities between the two groups, the younger ones were willing to wait and help the older ones, while the elders were enjoying in sharing their ideas and thoughts to the littles, taking care of the junior cadets like their own grandchildren.
May God’s love and joy continue to fill in our hearts, especially in our loving elders and kids!
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