“…and on this rock I will build my church…”
Church of Singapore was founded by the late Bro Goh Ewe Kheng, the late Bro Cheng Kai Ho, and the late Bro Huang Jen Shen. In 1963, there was a mighty outpouring of the Holy Spirit in Singapore and Malaysia. Many Christians, including our 3 founding elders, were baptised in the Holy Spirit. Church of Singapore was founded in December 1963 to take care of these newly Spirit-filled Christians who were hungry for the Word of God and knowledge of the Holy Spirit.
Our first meeting place was under a canvas roof at 8 Siglap Plain. As the number of believers increased, a new meeting place was urgently needed and we started meeting in an old bungalow at Mt Sophia that was due for demolition. At this time, the number of English-speaking members increased and the service language was changed to English and Mandarin.
In 1965, a church member learnt that the rooftop of a pre-war control building was available for rental. After successful negotiations, we moved into 145 Marine Parade Road.
As the church grew, there was a pressing need for more space. In 1977, the chief tenant offered us the chief tenancy of 145 Marine Parade Road on the condition that we continued to operate a school under the name “Tung Ling”. With that, “Tung Ling Bible School” was established in 1978.
We also branched out into Church of Singapore (Balestier) in 1979, Church of Singapore (Bukit Timah) in 1981, Church of Singapore (Woodlands) in 1987 and eventually, Church of Singapore (Harvest) in 1996.
Apart from branching out, we also sent our first missionaries for church planting work in 1977.
By the late 1980s, the church membership has grown to approximately 1,000. Our leaders started engaging the owners of 145 Marine Parade Road to purchase the property. In 1987, the owner finally agreed to sell the freehold property to us. Praise the Lord!
In 1989, the old building was demolished and construction of the new building began. During this time, our services were held in Odeon Katong Theatre and 41 Koon Seng Road. The new building was finally completed in 1992.
To better serve our community, we joined hands with three other churches and para-church organisations to found St Luke’s Hospital in 1991. Tung Ling Student Care Centre was also set up in 1995.
A new branch, Church of Singapore (Harvest) was set up in 1996. We also made further forays into community work by establishing Tung Ling ElderCare Centre (which eventually became Tung Ling Community Services) in 2000.
After occupying 145 Marine Parade Road for over 20 years, we saw the need for a series of upgrading works to improve and upgrade our facilities. This commenced in 2006.
Moving into the Future
By 2007, our congregation size has grown to over 3,000 members. And in 2013,
we celebrated our 50th anniversary with a series of celebratory events – an Open
House, a Combined Church Camp, High Praise and a Thanksgiving Celebration
Dinner. As we continue to grow and expand, construction works started for the
building of a new hall, Zion Hall, and it was completed in 2019.