90 years old and going strong – Paya Lebar Methodist Church celebrates God’s goodness

90 years old and going strong

It happened on a bus one day last June. Out of the blue, an elderly woman spoke up and asked the teenager seated beside her for some help. While the request was unexpected, it was—especially in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic—not unknown.

But God—He knew what it was about.

By His leading, the “chance” meeting turned into a multi-faceted mission through which a group of young people from Paya Lebar Methodist Church (PLMC) helped this Aunty clear her home, clean it and create a painting to brighten her living space.

Unbeknownst to them, their Holy Spirit-inspired work of art mirrored flowers on to those printed on the blouse Aunty wore on the day they presented the painting to her.

To all involved, it was a mind-blowing experience of “Immanuel, God with us” from beginning to end: it was God who orchestrated the meeting; God who gave form to the work and function to the painting; God who ordained the mutual blessing.1

Similar threads of divine intervention run through PLMC’s 90-year history. Hence, instead of marking the church’s 90th merely on her 10 July birthday, the entire 2022 has been designated “The Year of Celebration”, slated for observances that remember God’s amazing goodness and faithfulness in the past, while yet positioning the church to receive what He is unveiling for her in the present and in the future.

“God has woven the lives of past and present generations into a glorious ‘tapestry of power and love’, which is the theme for our year-long anniversary celebration,” said Rev Dr Kow Shih Ming, Pastor-in-Charge of PLMC, in his 2022 vision statement.

The slate of activities includes:


The digital exhibition highlights milestones in PLMC’s history2, as well as the contributions of pastors and members. Referencing the book of Exodus’ multiple exhortations to “remember”, Rev Dr Kow said: “Remembrance challenges us to consecrate ourselves afresh. In seeing how in the past a consecrated community is blessed to bless, we are inspired to similarly consecrate ourselves to be blessed to bless. When we celebrate what God did, it builds our faith. If this is what God did, God can do it again—and more.”


With the world still in the grips of the COVID-19 pandemic, our much-anticipated Church Camp has evolved into a Church Conference instead. Sub-themed “Generations Unbroken”, the conference (16 to 19 June) sets out to “cross-honour” and embrace the Kingdom destiny of each of the church family’s multiple generations. Keynote speakers include Pastors Edmund Chan, Chern Hock Chye and Nicholas Choo.


With our church vision as “A Family Blessed to Bless the Community and the Nations”, blessing others in the name of Christ is part of our church’s DNA. Ministries launched in the previous year’s Churchwide Engagement Programme, “40 Days of Blessing”, under the banner “Project Safe Place”, will continue, kicking off in 2022 with a blood donation drive on 6 Feb. From March to June, “Let’s Eat Together (Don’t Say Bo Jio!)” hospitality will be extended to poor and needy individuals and groups, and other pre-believers that PLMC worshippers come into contact with, with the aim of building “a bridge of relationship where Jesus can walk from our hearts into theirs”, Rev Dr Kow shared.


The anniversary celebrations will culminate with “A Christmas Tale”, a musical planned for 22, 23 and 24 Dec. This will showcase God’s plan of redemption for man from the beginning of creation, right through to the rebellion and the turning away of His chosen people, through the prophets, right up to the birth, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

All are welcome to join us. For more information and registration, go to in December.

In addition, we will celebrate blessing the community and the nations with about S$1 million or more through the 90th Anniversary Blessing Fund. $900,000 of the Blessing Fund to bless 90 ministries and organisations will come from the church budget. The other $100,000 or more that will go to the community will come from PLMC worshippers. The second offering received on 11 of the Holy Communion Weekends in 2022 will be designated for the community through the 90th Anniversary Blessing Fund. Direct donations to the Blessing Fund will likewise be used to bless the community.

Rev Dr Kow said, “My prayer is that every PLMC worshipper, young or older, will give in faith so that they can experience the blessing of being a generous giver to the Lord.”

Finally, all the work going into the Anniversary Celebrations will yield no eternal significance if we do not depend on God in everything we do. We must learn to live the truth found in the words attributed to Augustine: “Pray as though everything depended on God. Work as though everything depended on you.”

Hence, we will have a church prayer meeting once a month in 2022. We started this during “40 Days of Blessing”. In 2022, we will continue to have this church prayer meeting on the first Wednesday of every month.

We give all thanks and praise to our Eternal God who has richly blessed Paya Lebar Methodist Church throughout these 90 years. To God alone be the glory!

1 Watch the full testimony at


Filipino Ministry
Migrant workers outreach
Outreach to community
Outreach to community
Community outreach
Paya Lebar Methodist Church
Stained glass of PLMC sanctuary
Sanctuary at PLMC
PLMC sancturary
Worship service

Text and photos courtesy of Paya Lebar Methodist Church