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Posts Tagged ‘Capt. Roseline Lee 4th Miri’

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Flor Nera Woodford reminisces the sweet Methodist International Fellowship Night in Kapit way back in Dec 1964. At her left hand is the Bentara Bintang Sarawak (BBS) Award to her late husband.          

A tribute to Lt. Edward Woodford of 4th Miri Company, The Boys’ Brigade in Malaysia

By Lt. James TC Wong, 4th Miri Coy

My wife Roseline first received news of Eddy’s passing via her Whatsapp a day after our return from Sibu whereby over the weekend, we had attended the Boys’ Brigade Sarawak State Council’s AGM and 1st Sibu Company’s 50th Anniversary celebration.

Though we knew Eddy’s health and gait had deteriorated over the past few years, and conditions worsened a couple of months ago, still the news of our former BB Officer’s demise ached our hearts.

Roseline received a call on the afternoon of March 19 from Amy Lau of GMC, asking if she would be attending Eddy’s funeral wake. Amy had also hoped that my wife could share a few words during the wake as Captain of 4th Miri which Eddy had served previously for more than 10 years. Sensing my wife’s sad apprehension, I quickly volunteered to do it on her behalf.

The wake was held at a commercial funeral home at Riam at 5:00pm on Mar 20, a day after Eddy’s passing. Most of the people present were from GMC. Pastor Linberg Wong, from Agape Grace Methodist Preaching Centre, led in prayer. He also spoke fondly of Eddy, and so did Alex Tiang and Keith Chin who reminisced the good times they shared in mission trips and church activities.

Below is the full text of my eulogy delivered during the wake service:

Mrs Flor Nera Woodford and family,

On behalf of 4th Miri Captain Roseline, Honorary Captain Mr Frederick Wong, Chaplain Mr Tan Kok Chui, and fellow Officers – I offer you our deepest condolences.

Rev. Law Hui Seng, the previous Pastor-in-charge of GMC, has also asked me to convey his deepest condolences.

The writer of the Book of Ecclesiastes writes:

To everything there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:

A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted;

For us today, we have lost a wonderful, church brother. For the bereaved family, Flor has lost a loving husband, and the family; a caring dad, granddad.

It would be time to break down, a time to moan, a time to weep, a time to heal; and a time to build up in due course.

The loss of someone dear can be sometimes surreal and traumatic.

I, for one could not accept it when my dad suddenly passed away in 1986.

And at that time my wife and I just started working in Brunei and our first born son Aaron never had the chance to meet his granddad.

It took me years to get over my grief because I loved my dad so much.

We, at 4th Miri Company also love Eddy and Flor.

Eddy together with Flor, were part of the founding Officers in 2002 when 4th Miri was formed. Pastor Law Hui Seng was a strong supporter of the Boys’ Brigade Ministry. Led by Honorary Captain Mr Frederick Wong, the team of dedicated Officers and Helpers began the ministry by recruiting Juniors from Sri Mawar Primary School because the church simply didn’t have the numbers.

Now into our 17th year, 4th Miri Company, our church-based ministry has expanded to two schools with membership adding the Sarawak’s BB membership to 4,000 members in 40 Companies.

Like all church ministries, we face challenges from time to time. But we are encouraged by Eddy’s “I can do it” attitude. Eddy and Flor never stopped serving in 4th Miri if they could. They only stopped during the past few years when they faced frailty and health issues.

Many of you know Eddy as the cheerful and happy-go-lucky man. But I can say many of you don’t know that Eddy was instrumental in setting up a BM ministry that eventually led to the formation of Tudan Methodist Church.

In 2005, Eddy proposed to Rev Law Hui Seng to start a BM ministry in the areas of Pujut 7 and Tudan. The first family contacted were the Gemongs. Together with 20 others, Mr Gemong and his family were the first group to be baptized. During Tudan outreach, Eddy and Flor together with several GMC members like Mr and Mrs William Ketit, Mr and Mrs Mak Mek, Margaret Lee and Audrey Lui persevered relentlessly in the BM ministry.

Eddy was also passionate on short-term missions to Ulu Belaga, Kapit, Balingian and Rh. Tatom in Selangau. His talent in languages and dialects made his a ‘people’s person’ – easy to relate to and get along with.

Eddy is my role model. Eddie never missed any prayer meeting for no good reason. At that time, prayer meeting was on Tuesday night. I would see him and Flor seated at the aisle left seats.

It was hardly surprising to see him present or participate at church events because he made the effort to be available.

I want to thank God for sending Eddy to me and my family, to 4th Miri Company.

Till we meet again, Eddy, Rest In Peace, my dear brother.

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Wedding of Eddy and Flor on Dec 18, 1965 at Kapit Methodist Church. Photo credit: Flor Nera Woodford.

Born Edward Kenneth Thomson Woodford in 1937 in Kuching to an Australian father and an Iban mother, Eddy grew up and studied in Sri Aman and Kuching. He worked as an Overseer in the District Council from 1961-1967 in Kapit.

In early 1960s, many Americans believed they were standing at the dawn of a golden age. Kapit soon became a thriving evangelism hub for American-sponsored Methodist missionaries as they built school and hostel to cater for the local indigenous children’s education.

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Eddy and Flor in Kapit. Photo credit: Flor Nera Woodford.

It was in Kapit that Eddy met and fell in love with his future wife. The beautiful, petite Methodist missionary Florentina Nera hailed from San Roque, San Manuel, Pangasinan, The Philippines. Initially Florentina was reluctant to commit to a relationship as she was on a working contract. Eventually true love prevailed and the couple tied the knot on Dec 18, 1965 at Kapit Methodist Church with the wedding service conducted by Reverends Burr Baughman, Joseph Andrew Fowler and Terence Joseph.

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Eddy and Flor taking a stroll by the river in Kapit. Photo credit: Flor Nera Woodford.

Over the years, Eddy also worked in commercial companies in Sarikei, Bandar Seri Begawan and Seria before joining Sarawak Shell Berhad. He retired in 1992. Besides actively serving in church ministries, Eddy was also passionate in community services and deserving of the ‘Bentara Bintang Sarawak’ (BBS Award) in 2000 by the then TYT Sarawak Abang Muhammad Salahuddin Abang Barieng.

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Lt Eddy (4th from left) attending the BCM 2005 in Miri. Photo credit: Flor Nera Woodford.

Daughter Sharon remembered her dad with much love and gratitude. “Dad was strict and straightforward. He seldom raised his voice or got angry. He was responsible and looked out for his family whenever he could. Dad was thrifty but not with time. He would make time for his family and other people who needed his help. He didn’t express his love but I know he loved us a lot.”

The Boys’ Brigade Sarawak State Council Executive Secretary Lt Hu Wei Ung commended the dedication of Eddy and his wife. “Despite their advanced years, Eddy and Flor were always enthusiastic about BB and the advancement of Christ’s Kingdom. We were very privileged that they were our team in Sarawak,” he added.

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Eddy during his church mission trip to Ulu Kapit. Photo credit: Flor Nera Woodford.

This Easter, as I conclude this tribute, and when no words are enough to express our gratitude to Lt Edward Woodford – let us take a moment to ponder and appreciate the ‘Eddys’ in our lives; the  Officers (past and present) who dedicated themselves unconditionally to The Boys’ Brigade. Sure and Stedfast, all glory to God!

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Cutting of the 15th Anniversary Cake. Photo credit – Aaron Wong.

by Lt. James TC Wong, 4th Miri Coy

June 18, Miri – A wonderful BB Enrollment Sunday as we celebrated our 15th Anniversary. Yes, God has sustained us!

The narrative of this journey first began in the year 2002 when then the pastor-in-charge of Grace Methodist Church Rev. Law Hui Seng, and a small team of like-minded church volunteers shared the same vision to start the Boys’ Brigade (BB).

“I can still remember it was a great struggle for us. We went to Sri Mawar Primary School to recruit. We had just a handful of boys joining us initially,” commented Rev. Law. “We held our weekly parade at the school and subsequently we moved the parade to the church.”

“And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus.” – Philippians 4:19

Success is seldom the work of one but a team. Our salute and appreciation go to the pioneering officers; our first Captain Frederick Wong (now Honorary Captain), Eddie Woodford and his wife, Flor Nera, Tan Teck Choon, Vincent Kueh, Tiong Tung Yew, Margaret Lee, Anthony Ho and Moses Goh.

4th Miri group photo taken in 2003. Photo credit – 4th Miri Hon. Capt. Frederick Wong.

Our appreciation also goes to our other past two Captains; Clement Chin and Andy Chew who were dedicated to the BB ministry. Past and present, we also extend our thanks to our fellow officers and helpers who braved to undertake such a challenging ministry.

A big ‘Thank You’ to Rev. Law Hui Seng for his ‘never-give-up’ attitude to introduce BB to SJK (C) Chung Hua Pujut. Despite getting rejected by the school in 2008, Rev. Law never gave up hope. The good shepherd, as I remember, encouraged the congregation to pray earnestly during the weekly prayer night for acceptance. The breakthrough came two years later. The increase to the Boys’ membership greatly motivated and encouraged us!

Following Rev. Law, the next pastor-in-charge in GMC was Rev. Lisa Ting. Rev. Lisa during her four-year tenure, encouraged the BB ministry enthusiastically and never once missed our Enrollment Sunday!

Capt. Roseline Lee delivering her report during the 2017 Enrollment Sunday.

By God’s grace, my wife Roseline became the fourth Captain in the year 2010. Since 2015, she has been appointed as the State Secretary in the Executive Committee of The Boys’ Brigade Sarawak State Council. Presently Sarawak has 40 Companies with more than 4,000 Members.

In 2015, after many prayers and with God’s grace, Capt. Roseline was able to introduce BB to SMK Dato Permaisuri. We were overjoyed because it meant that our ministry covers three clusters; one church-based and two schools.

We will continue to glorify God as we march on in BB!

4th Miri Company group photo. Photo credit – Aaron Wong.

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Group pic of BCM2018 Sarawak Committee members present last night.

by Lt. James TC Wong, 4th Miri

MAY 15, MIRI – During last month’s Brigade Council Meeting in Muar, it was announced that Miri was unanimously chosen as next year’s AGM venue.

It is a great honor for Sarawak Boys’ Brigade State Council to host such an important event in the calendar of The Boys’ Brigade in Malaysia.

About 200 Officers, Delegates and Observers throughout the country are expected to attend.

Prior to this announcement at the ongoing meeting in Muar, BB Sarawak State Commissioner Hon. Capt. Hii King Ong briefly introduced about Miri. Following that, a powerpoint presentation given by 4th Miri Capt. Roseline Lee received a warm response and applause from the participants.

The BCM2018 Sarawak Committee was formalized last night after receiving the prayer blessing from Rev. George Wong Hin Hung, former Chaplain of the Sarawak State Boys’ Brigade. The good shepherd also gave a short exhortation to the committee members present. He urged them to be extra diligent and hardworking in the BB ministry. “You all have the means to reach out to the indigenous groups of students in the rural areas. You have a duty and you have the capability to do so,” urged Rev George.

BB Deputy Sarawak State Commissioner and Northern Region President Hon. Capt. Lawrence Wong was elected as the Organizing Chairman with BB Sarawak State Commissioner Hon. Capt. Hii King Ong and Honorary BB Sarawak State Commissioner Hon. Capt. Lo Hoi Fook as Advisors.

Other members include Capt. Patrick Tiong (2nd Miri), Capt. Kenneth Law (3rd Miri), Capt. Roseline Lee (4th Miri), Hon. Capt. Ling Yew Kwong (5th Miri), Capt. David Wong (6th Miri), Capt. Tiong Hee Kwong (7th Miri), Capt. Mutang (1st Beluru), Capt. Edmund Wong (7th Kuching), Lt. Hu Wei Ung (ES, SSC), Lt. James TC Wong and Helper Aaron Wong (both of 4th Miri).

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