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Tuesday July 3, 2012
SEVERAL religious leaders at some churches reminded their followers during Sunday worship services that the charges against City Harvest Church were directed at individuals and not the church, or religion in general.
Church-goers should not speculate or gossip, but leave the matter to the courts, they said. Some also asked their congregation to pray for City Harvest Church members.
Its founding pastor, Kong Hee, and four senior church leaders were charged with allegedly misappropriating millions of church funds.
At Sunday morning’s service at the Singapore Expo, Kong again declared that he maintained his integrity, and received a standing ovation from an exuberant crowd of 6,000, many with banners of support for him and his pop-singer wife Ho Yeow Sun.
Pastor Lawrence Khong of Faith Community Baptist Church urged his congregation to pray, instead of talk about the case with others, especially on social media. He also asked them to pray that the good community work of the church would endure.
Church-goers at New Creation Church were asked by Deacon Matthew Kang not to speculate or blog about the case, but to pray for the church instead.
Meanwhile, the unusual move by City Harvest Church to issue a statement dismissing the allegations of before the case has gone to trial has fuelled questions of its intent.
Insiders said the church deemed the statement necessary to allay the concerns of its 30,000 members.
An executive member who has been with the church for more than a decade said City Harvest, in making that strongly worded statement, was seeking to lift the congregation’s spirits and “unite them”. — The Straits Times / Asia News Network
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