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our journey

OUR STORY

starting small

1958 – 1960

Our journey began in 1958, when siblings Henry and Margaret Khoo, both teachers with huge missional hearts, were led to open up their home on King’s Road as a place for their students to learn about Christianity. King’s Youth Group, as we were known then, consisted of students from Bukit Panjang Government High School and Duchess Primary School, where the Khoos respectively taught. With their friend Herbert Woon, they provided tuition for the youths and conducted Bible study classes.

In 1960, as numbers grew, the group moved to Nanyang Kindergarten, opposite the Khoo’s house.

becoming Bukit Timah EFC

EARLY 1960s

The King’s Youth Group joined the family of the Evangelical Free Church (EFC) in 1961, after being introduced to Rev Eric McMurray, an Evangelical Free Church of America (EFCA) missionary. We shifted to a house on Yarwood Avenue and called ourselves Bukit Timah Evangelical Free Church (BTEFC).

In 1964, we officially registered as a local church under the EFC in Singapore. This move was supported by another missionary, Rev Ben Sawatsky, who composed our church constitution and aided with the registration process.

We owe a great debt to EFCA for sending missionaries across the world to Singapore and supporting the work financially. This served as the catalyst for our own firm commitment to missions work years down the road.

12b King Albert Park

1958 – 1960

In 1968, we moved again when the lease at Yarwood expired. Singapore Bible College became our home for two years. During this time, we steadily grew in number. End 1969, we successfully secured a plot of land at 12B King Albert Park (KAP) — our home for the next 29 years — with support from churches in the US, donations, and interest-free loans.

We commenced our first meeting at KAP on 4 January 1970. In 1975, Rev Lee Twee Kim, who had attended the King’s Youth Group as a teenager, began leading BTEFC. He would serve for 30 years, till stepping down in 2005.

multiplying & moving again

1980s – 1990s

Growth continued through the 80s and 90s as Rev Lee and the leaders taught God’s Word boldly and cared for the flock in a warm family church setting. Rev Lee also put in place the small-group structure to ensure all members would receive adequate pastoral care. All these laid a strong foundation for our priorities and our personal tone of ministry in years to come.

Our commitment to missions took shape with our first Missions Committee formed in 1984. And in the early 90s, we sent out our first missionary families to Africa and Japan. 

In 1993, we were informed that our permit to use 12B KAP as a church would expire in 1994. This was heart-breaking as we were in the midst of upgrading our premises. When it became clear there was no possibility of permit renewal after multiple appeals, we began our search for a new location, sensing that God was directing us to a heartland estate. Thankfully we were allowed to stay on in KAP while looking for a new place.

becoming Woodlands EFC

1999