Saturday, July 14, 2012

Christian concert cancelled due to City Harvest woes

One of Singapore's biggest annual Christian concerts has been cancelled due to the current woes of the leaders of City Harvest Church (CHC).

Festival of Praise, which brings together members of more than 30 churches in Singapore, is said to be one of the most important events of the local Christian calendar.

Its snazzy shows with overseas performers are usually well-attended, said The Straits Times in its report.

In an open letter on its Facebook page, Canon James Wong, who is the founder and president of Festival of Praise Fellowship, announced the cancellation of the concert which is in its 26th year.
He said: "It is with the heaviest of hearts that the Committee announces that Festival of Praise 2012 has been canceled."

The concert, which is usually held at the Singapore Indoor Stadium, was supposed to be staged at City Harvest's auditorium at Suntec Singapore as its usual venue was unavailable.

Mr Wong said that apart from the venue, CHC had also volunteered to provide manpower in terms of hospitality, ushering and security matters relating to the Festival.

CHC's Kong Hee is the Executive Director of the Festival of Praise, as he has been for the last few years.

Said Mr Wong: "However, as you might know, Rev. Kong and City Harvest Church are currently undergoing a challenging period. In view of this situation, the Committee has decided not to go ahead with this year's Festival."

The paper reported that news of the cancellation came as a shock to some, who have been attending the event regularly.

In response to some comments on their Facebook page, festival organisers said: "It is not just about Rev Kong. His staff and members are heavily involved in this year's FOP. For the best interest of the church members, the Committee has decided to cancel for this year."

The Straits Times reported that efforts to reach the festival organisers, City Harvest Church and Canon Wong were unsuccessful.

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