Kong Hee receives standing ovation for 10 minutes from 6,000 CHC members who rally behind him
Posted by temasektimes on July 1, 2012
Disgraced founder of City Harvest Church (CHC) pastor Kong Hee may be in the public spotlight for the wrong reasons lately, but he still commands strong support among loyal CHC members, judging from their response during a church service yesterday evening at the Singapore Expo Hall 1.
Over 6,000 people packed into the hall with a capacity of 5,000 as they listen to Pastor Kong Hee defends himself against the charges slapped on him.
Kong Hee was charged together with four others for misusing up to S$50 million dollars of the church’s funds to further the music career of his singer wife Ho Yeow San which was strenuously denied by him.
Speaking to his flock yesterday, Kong Hee maintained his ‘integrity’ and said defiantly that he is waiting to have his ‘say’ in court next month.
As he spoke on stage, his supporters below unfurled banners with the words ‘We love Kong Hee!’ and shouted in unison – ‘Pastor, we love you!’.
After he ended his speech, the crowd gave him a standing ovation for 10 minutes to express their support for him.
According to some CHC members we spoke to, many of them genuinely believe that Kong Hee was ‘wrongly’ charged and it was simply a ‘misunderstanding’ which will clear up with time.
CHC has rallied around Kong Hee by issuing an official statement earlier on its website that they stood behind him and he will remain a senior pastor at the church, in stark contrast to the measures taken by Buddhist charity Ren Ci which removed its founder Ming Yi from its Board immediately after he was charged for criminal breach of trust.
The strong show of support from CHC appears to unsettle some in the establishment with PAP MP Sam Tan coming out to soothe frayed nerves, saying that he ‘empathized’ with CHC members and that their support for Kong Hee is ‘understandable’.
When Kong Hee was first charged on Wednesday, over 200 CHC members turned up outside the Subordinate Courts to express their support for him.
As CHC continues to stand firm behind Kong Hee and rally the ‘troops’ on his behalf, more will expect to step forward publicly to defend and protect him in the days to come.