Queenstown Lutheran Church is the second Lutheran Church in Singapore. Built at a cost of $150,000, the Church was opened on 13 March 1966 and dedicated on 1 May 1966 as an extension to the Lutheran Church of Our Redeemer at Duke Road. The Church was built with funds from the United Lutheran Church in America.
The façade of the church features a bold, pyramidal roof that allows rainwater to drain quickly and high internal spaces for air to flow effectively. Other design features include a sanctuary with striking geometry and multicoloured strips of glass panels inserted next to the cruciform, which bring light into the sanctuary.
Queenstown Lutheran Church first started as a Sunday school in 1965 when founding pastor, Reverend John Nelson, started evangelistic work in Queenstown. Services were held in both Mandarin and English. After the Church building was completed, a number of other ministries were started to serve the neighbourhood. Among these were cooking, sewing and language classes, the Boys’ Brigade and recreational sports.
William Wong, 55, was a long time worshipper at the Church. He recalled, “There were few forms of entertainment in the 1960s and children from the neighbourhood would gather at the basketball court for a friendly match every evening. When Bill Bolm, a youth missionary, started the Boys’ Brigade in 1967, my mother enrolled me into the Company so that I could learn to be self-disciplined.”
The Boys’ Brigade 26th Singapore Company from Queenstown Lutheran Church took part in many parades and ceremonies over the years. On 13 May 1967, the Company was part of the Singapore Battalion Boys’ Brigade which held their first church parade at Queenstown. Richard Khoo, 76, was an officer with the Company. He remembered, “There were around 1,500 officers and boys at the parade. We marched from the Lutheran Church at Commonwealth Crescent to Faith Methodist Church at Commonwealth Drive before ending at the former Baharuddin Vocational School.”
Today, the church continues to play an important social role in the neighbourhood by providing counselling services and tuition classes.
Queenstown Lutheran Church, 1966 (Courtesy of Faith Methodist Church)
Recreational sports such as basketball were held within the Church premises, 1967 (Courtesy of William Wong and Richard Khoo)
William Wong, 55, was the drum major of the Boys’ Brigade, circa around 1970s. (Courtesy of William Wong and Richard Khoo)
Weekly drills for the Boys’ Brigade were conducted at the Basketball Court , circa around 1970s. (Courtesy of William Wong and Richard Khoo)