Melbourne (墨尔本) Asian Seventh-day Adventist Church

Wu Chook Ying 2014

Basic Demographic Information

Official Name: Melbourne Chinese Seventh-day Adventist Church

Church Administrative Unit: Victorian Conference, South Pacific Division

Date Officially Formed: Date?, 1980

Founding Minister: James Wong

Church Website: ???

Current Address: Street address??, Forrest Hill, Victoria, Australia 9999

Date on which Current Sanctuary was Dedicated: Date??, 1987

Current Membership: ???? at the time of writing.

The Beginning

In the mid-1970s a large number of Asian immigrants, associated with the Vietnam War, arrived in Australia. Some came to Australia under great hardship, with hardly any more than the clothes on their backs. Furthermore, many could not speak English. Many were staying in hotels in Melbourne. Mrs. Linnie Pohan [whose parents are Mr. and Mrs. Lin Chung Hsi (林忠喜)], in conjunction with the SDA Community Services, rendered assistance by providing them materials goods donated by the public and finding jobs for them.

By 1978, there were already a number of Chinese Adventists living in Melbourne, and a group of five families formed the Asian Adventist group. Pastor James Wong (黃文華) and his brother-in-law Lee Yan Tuck (李恩德) led out the first meeting of the Asian group and it was held in a classroom at the Nunawading SDA High School. Present were fifteen baptized members, three children and about ten non-Adventists. The first few meetings were conducted in mandarin. Later, English and Mandarin were used.

Two years later, 1980, a room at the Nunawading Camp Ground became available and it became the new home until 1983. Members were busy with church choirs, ensemble, camps, branch Sabbath schools, and other activities. The Asian Company continued to grow as new members migrated from other countries. The church leaders then made plans for a permanent home. Their prayers were answered when in December 1983. With just $6,000 in the church bank account, the church acquired this church property Where? in a wonderful display of God’s providence. Half of the amount was donated by the Chan Chun Foundation, popularly known as the “Crocodile Foundation”. The other half was raised through private donations by our members, through pledges and fund-raising activities, and from some members of the Sydney Chinese Adventist Church.

Church Officially Dedicated

The Forest Hill Asian Church is a little United Nation in the South Pacific. By 1987 the year of dedication, the church had members representing 22 nationalities, namely: Australia, Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Philippines, East Timor, Vietnam, Kampuchea, Laos, Taiwan, Japan, South Korea, New Zealand, Fiji, Romania, Holland, Poland, South Africa, Yugoslavia, China and Burma.

In the last 20 years, with the pastors and many committed members, the church has continued to grow, spreading the word of God and impacting lives with engaging programs, thus resulting in many new baptized members and their spiritual growth.

All through these 20 years the following people have served the church as pastors: James Wong, Choo Wei Fong (朱偉煌), John Chan (陳元度), Isaac Foo (符潤), Stenic Gangadoo [short-time overseeing], Paul Kolanko [short-time]. In April 2014, the new pastor is Terrance Sim (沈天送) from Peninsular Malaysia.