Patricia came to faith on an Alpha 15 years ago and is a self-professed “Alphaholic”. As an investment banker in Hong Kong, she began searching for God’s call in her life when God gave her a vision to start Alpha in the workplace. Her step of faith and obedience opened doors for her to see colleagues coming to faith, seeing their lives transformed, and people boldly living out their faith in the workplace. Since then, she has witnessed how God has used Alpha as a powerful tool to reach people beyond her workplace, to different districts and industries in Hong Kong.
“It is not only about ministering to people, but it is about ministering to people you work with every day, and who you probably spend more time with than your family. I’m truly humbled by how God can empower ordinary people to be His light in the workplace.”
Patricia now serves full time as the Executive Director for Alpha Hong Kong.
Below is her story, written when she was still in investment banking, of her experience using the tool of Alpha in the workplace.
I am an investment banker in Hong Kong, and I’m also an “Alphaholic”. I came to faith through Alpha 15 years ago when a friend of mine brought me to Alpha after reading about it from the newspaper. Since then, I’ve done Alpha in churches many times and also had the privilege of doing Alpha in the workplace.
Coming to faith was the start of a beautiful journey of knowing God. Over time, He also gradually reordered my desires and renewed my mind. And as I grew in my relationship with God, I felt convicted that I lived a compartmentalised life where work was a separate compartment in my walk with God. I work in ICC, the tallest building in Hong Kong where several global investment banks are housed. Yet, I saw little eternal value in my job as an investment banker. This urged me to start searching for God’s calling in my life.
As I dug deeper into this, God gave me new insight and shifted my mindset. I learnt that ministry can happen in the marketplace and we are called to be marketplace ministers. Through this I realised that the church is not confined to the 4 walls of a building but can also happen in the workplace.
The question then was – where do I start? I have to confess, the idea of talking to my colleagues about the gospel was quite daunting to me. So, I made the simple decision to start talking to God about my colleagues before I talked to my colleagues about God. I started to intentionally pray for my colleagues by name every day. It was just a baby step forward, but things started to move. God started connecting me with other Christians who worked in investment banks in the same building. We shared the same heart to bring church to our colleagues if we couldn’t bring our colleagues to church. Often, we find it challenging to invite colleagues to church because of the long working hours.
6 years ago, God gave us a vision to host Alpha in one of the investment banks so that we can bring church to people. But getting a venue to host a religious event in a global investment bank is no mean feat. Banks are paranoid about maintaining their neutral stance and don’t want to side with any religion. Banks also want to maintain a high degree of security and don’t want competitors to enter their premises. Yet, amazingly, every time when we took the courage to ask for a venue, God unfailingly opened doors for us. Year after year, He faithfully removed all the obstacles for us such that we managed to secure venues that allowed us to host more than 100 people each time for the past 6 years.
Through Alpha in the workplace, I’ve seen colleagues come to faith, lives being transformed, people courageously living out their faith at work, and Christian communities being formed to support and encourage each other. I’ve been incredibly blessed by Alpha in the workplace. I also count myself blessed to be able to walk with a group of brothers and sisters that are on fire for God working in the same building.
To me, there is something incredibly special about being able to do Alpha in the workplace. Because it is not only about spreading the good news. It is about using your sphere of influence at work to spread the good news. It is not only about ministering to people, but it is about ministering to people you work with every day, and who you probably spend more time with than your family. It gives you a channel to integrate your faith with your work. It is seeing God at work.
It thrills me to see how God is now connecting like-minded people to join hands in a city-wide initiative to envision how we can use Alpha as a tool to bring the good news to the marketplace. I’m truly humbled by how God can empower ordinary people like you and me in the workplace to be a city on the hill.
Are you ready to run an Alpha in YOUR Workplace?
If you would like to run your own Alpha at your workplace and have questions (i.e. How to start? How to create a mailing list to invite your colleagues? Where to get promotional materials? Are donations accepted?), don’t hesitate to reach out to the nearest National Alpha Office, or write to [email protected].