Good News for newcomers to Singapore

By Nevin Nitschke

In the 1980’s, as Singapore made plans to build the tall infrastructure that fills its skyline today, many workers were recruited from other countries, including Thailand, to provide the labour. The Lutheran Church in Malaysia and Singapore (LCMS) realised a need to bring the gospel of Jesus Christ to the Thai community who were living […]

In the 1980’s, as Singapore made plans to build the tall infrastructure that fills its skyline today, many workers were recruited from other countries, including Thailand, to provide the labour. The Lutheran Church in Malaysia and Singapore (LCMS) realised a need to bring the gospel of Jesus Christ to the Thai community who were living and working in Singapore. The Thai Good News Centre (TGNC) was established in 1989, as a partnership between LCMS and missionaries from the Finnish Evangelical Lutheran Mission (FELM) and the Norwegian Mission Society (NMS).

In August 1996, the TGNC was officially recognised as an organized congregation of LCMS, and then in March 1998, with the Lutheran Church in Singapore (LCS). Since its formation seventeen men who received support and encouragement at the Centre have come to know Jesus. On their return to Thailand, these men studied theology (for one year) at the Luther Seminary in Thailand before returning to their home villages and starting churches.

Rosanna Hutagalung, a former missionary who served in Thailand, is now supervising the ministry at the Centre. As a young woman, Rosanna worked very close to the Thai Good News Centre and spent a year there as an Intern while studying at Singapore Bible College.  She served in Thailand for 18 years, returning to Singapore for three months of furlough in 2020. But COVID-19 struck, borders were closed and she was unable to return to Thailand. In December 2021, the Bishop of LCS (Rev Lu Guan Hoe) invited Rosanna to serve at the Centre. She considered this invitation as the Lord calling her to stay in Singapore.

Since the pandemic the Thai Good News Centre has changed its mission focus. Many foreign construction workers in Singapore returned to their home countries and many others stayed away. Singapore has now reopened its borders but it will take some years for the large number of workers to return. So, the mission of the Thai Good News Centre has adapted. The focus is now on building relationships with Thai women who have married Singaporean men, and who work in the shops surrounding the Centre. These women are often from rural Thailand, they know little English, nor are their husbands highly educated. Often, they have married in the hope of being able to send money back home. Few, therefore, have married for love. There is often a significant age difference between the couple (sometimes as much as 40 years) which causes strain on the marriage.

Rosanna and parish worker Kawee, minister to these women, inviting them to share their burdens. Kawee and Rosanna listen to their challenges and pray for the women, encouraging them to release their cares to our Heavenly Father. The Holy Spirit has been present through this ministry and three of the women have been baptised.

Each month, the Centre distributes dry food to the Thai people living nearby. A tract is included in the packages offering English lessons at the Centre. They want the Thai people to know that there is a place they can come and be open and vulnerable and feel safe.

Rosanna and Kawee have a deep love for the Thai people and want these people who are now living in Singapore to know of the love of Jesus. Rosanna and Kawee recognise their purpose as the same as Paul and Appllos’ in 1 Corinthians 3. They plant the seed, through the Thai Good News Centre and it is watered but God makes it grow. They are co-workers in God’s service and thank God that he has allowed them to join him in this ministry.


Many of our partner churches are working in new territory for the kingdom of God; therefore, spiritual attack is their everyday reality. As a member of a congregation, school, or family, or a couple or individual, you are invited to commit to praying for our partners in mission. For regular prayer point updates, go to www.lca.org.au/international-mission/act-now/pray

Read more stories about our partner church in Singapore at https://www.lcamission.org.au/category/stories/international-partners/singapore/

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About the Author : Erin Kerber


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