I made my first trip to Free Community Church on Easter Sunday with my good friend Ian. He wanted to visit and I decided to come along.
Anyway, it was a surprise. I was expecting a rather traditional setting based on what I'd seen on their website - namely, readings from lectionary texts, but I was in for a surprise.
The church was located in a building, not unlike one you might find in an industrial estate, but the sanctuary was rather "contemporary-evangelical" like. Spot lighting. Cushioned chairs set in a semi circle over a slightly raised stage. Modern looking musical ensemble plugged in and ready to worship.
Worship was lovely. The keyboardist was really good looking and he played really well too. The rest of the musicians weren't too shabby either.
The pastor wore a white collar and I was rather surprised by that - over how traditional he is. So Pastor Miak Siew preached and I tried to be as attentive as I could. What I couldn't shake off was the fact that there was a reason why they changed the song they sung for worship from "Jesus died for our pardon" to "Jesus died for our freedom". The reason was because he did not believe in substitutional atonement.
And I was like in a state of shock as he said this midway through the sermon. As he continued explaining, I just stared at him in wonder.
What about this verse then:
He himself is the sacrifice that atones for our sins—and not only our sins but the sins of all the world. (1 John 2:2 NLT)
Okay never mind that.
Ian and I were invited to have lunch with some of the girls in the church. They were extremely friendly to these two newcomers. It was nice eating with them. I personally prefer the fellowship to the service. That's saying a lot.
Well, I feel like FCC is a great place for Christians who feel like they are outcasts in their church, people who have been kicked out of their church, those who want to find an LGBT affirming church and non-Christians who are LGBT who are exploring what Christianity is about.
However, after the second visit, I can safely say that I wouldn't be visiting again anytime soon. Their theology just doesn't gel with me. It's a pity because I really enjoy the company of the people, but I have a difficult time trying to reconcile what the pastor says and what I have come to learn about God from the Bible that's all.
That being said, everyone should go take a look before labelling it as evil. I don't think they are evil. I believe they want to follow God with all their heart but the theology's a bit warped. So to each his own. Now I kinda understand why they're not in the National Council of Churches Singapore and with good reason. Still, it's what some people call home. It's what they call home after being unable to find it in another church. So you tell me what needs to be done.