St Andrew's Church, Kowloon
|St Andrew's Church Kowloon|
Facade of St Andrew's Church
|Location||138 Nathan Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon, Hong Kong|
|Denomination||Anglican church, Province of Hong Kong Sheng Kung Hui|
|Founded||13 December 1904|
|Consecrated||6 October 1906|
|Heritage designation||Listed Grade II historic building in Hong Kong|
|Vicar(s)||Rev John Menear|
|Minister(s)||Rev Dale Hanson (Senior Associate Minister)
Rev Dan Evers (Associate Minister)
Rev Raymond Leung (Associate Minister)
Rev Alex McCoy (Associate Minister)
St Andrew's Church (Chinese: 聖安德烈堂) is located at 138 Nathan Road, Kowloon, Hong Kong. It is a church of the Anglican (Sheng Kung Hui) Province of Hong Kong and in the Diocese of Western Kowloon. It is the oldest English speaking Protestant church in Kowloon. While St Andrew’s commenced its life as a church for the expatriate community, it is now an international church with 90% of those attending considering Hong Kong as their home.
Sunday services are currently held at 8:30am, 9:45am, 11:30am and 5:00pm in English, and at 2:00pm in Mandarin (Putonghua). The Lord’s Supper (Holy Communion) is administered at the 8:30am service every Sunday. At all other services, it is administered on the second and fourth Sundays. Check the official website for the latest information.
The idea of building an Anglican church in Kowloon was first suggested in 1897 but no progress was made until 1904, when Sir Catchick Paul Chater offered HK$35,000 to finance the construction. The chosen site was next to a large garden area owned by Sir Paul, covering the area between Robinson Road (now Nathan Road) and Austin Road.
The war years from 1914 to 1918 were difficult for the church because many of its members came from the military bases on Kowloon and had to leave for duty elsewhere. The church was barely able to survive financially.
From 1942 to 1944, the congregation of All Saints Mong Kok used St Andrew’s for services as their church was used as a rice store. They were allowed back to All Saints in late 1944 and took much of the furniture from St Andrew’s with them, saving it from destruction when the main church building was turned into a Shinto shrine early in 1945.
The church organised its first Sunday school in 1947.
The Lych Gate and steps were added in 1954 to mark the 50th anniversary of the laying of the church foundation stone.
In 1978, St Andrew's Christian Centre (a 6-storey building that includes apartments, offices and a hall) was built to replace the damaged church hall. The Centre now houses different Christian organisations.
St Andrew's Church planted Resurrection Church (Sai Kung) in 1983 and Shatin Church in 1990.
In 1997, St Andrew’s held special services on the Sunday before the handover of Hong Kong to China. The morning service “Our Transition and Hope” was broadcast on the BBC World Service. In the evening there was a reconciliation service with local Chinese churches.
In 2006, the centenary refurbishment of the church received an Award of Merit from the UNESCO Asia-Pacific Awards for Cultural Heritage Conservation. The church was praised for "a thorough conservation approach which sought to fully understand the building’s significance and deterioration process before proposing solutions".
In 2009, the church launched its “2020Vision” which led to the construction of the "Life Centre", a new building at the foot of the hill, facing onto Nathan Road. Construction began in 2010 and was completed in 2015. The Life Centre houses a large auditorium and multi-purpose rooms, with a landscaped garden above. The design won a Merit Award from the American Institute of Architects Hong Kong Chapter in 2011.
The church was designed by the architects Leigh & Orange in the Victorian Gothic style. It is built of red brick and granite, laid on rammed earth foundations. The bricks on the external walls are exposed and pointed with a lime-based mortar. Interior walls are rendered with raised mortar joints and painted to represent the underlying brick pattern.
The stained glass in the altar and baptismal windows is the original glass, dating from 1906, made by William Morris & Co. of Westminster, London. More contemporary Art Nouveau style coloured glass was installed later in the West window and upper nave windows. To commemorate the church’s centenary, two pictorial coloured glass windows were installed in the transepts.
The church’s bell tower used to have a tall spire which eventually had to be removed due to repeated structural damage from typhoons. The bells are the original carillon of 8 bronze tubular bells from Harrington’s of Coventry, England, installed in 1906.
Other heritage buildings in the church compound include the two-storey Old Vicarage built in 1909, the Amahs’ Quarters and Verger’s Cottage, built at around the same period. All three buildings are constructed in red brick with granite detailing. The ensemble of church buildings currently has Grade II historic building status.
- History of St Andrew's Church
- "From British Colonization to Japanese Invasion" . HKIA Journal (Issue No. 45: 50 years of Hong Kong Institute of Architects): 47. 2006.05.30.
- Antiquities and Monuments Office: Brief Information on Proposed Grade 1 Items. Item#42.
- 2006. St Andrews Church Centenary Celebration commemorative booklet
- Rodwell, Sally (1991). Historic Hong Kong: a visitor's guide. Odyssey. ISBN 978-962-217-212-8
- UNESCO Asia-Pacific Awards for Cultural Heritage Conservation: 2006 Awards Entries for Culture Heritage Conservation: China
- 2013. St Andrew’s Church Building on our Heritage brochure.
- Antiquities and Monuments Office: List of Graded Historic Buildings in Hong Kong (as at 6 November 2009)
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