The instantly recognizable Blessed Sacrament Church has an interesting link with the growth of Singapore. In the 1950s, Singapore’s first “satellite town” Queenstown, was surrounded by a secondary jungle and the late Archbishop Michael Olcomendy, was tasked to build a church that would serve the new township.
He requested help from the Congregation of the Sacred Hearts of Jesus and Mary in Indonesia, and Fr. William van Soest and Fr. Odo Tiggeloven were sent to Singapore to undertake this mission. They worked tirelessly and with much perseverance completed the Damien Hall in 1963, which served as a temporary worship space, and accomodation for the priests.
The church was blessed with a strong community from the start, and older parishioners would recall breakfasts and conversations had among the congregation, who would gather together for fellowship after mass in the hall.
The church was at one point of time, home to a “mini-zoo” within its compound, and it gradually grew to become an attraction for people around the neighbourhood and even other parts of the island. Children would look forward to feeding the animals after mass and it added to the community spirit.
The most striking feature of the church is its slanted, slate roof, built to resemble the shape of a tent, which is a reference to the space being a ‘‘tent of meeting’, an old phrase used for the Biblical tabernacle. Its distinctive architecture, along with the church’s close history with the growing township, led URA to accord the Blessed Sacrament Church “its conservation status” in 2005.
With huge panelled windows letting in just the right amount of natural light, brick walls and a sloped, timber ceiling, the Blessed Sacrament Church has a welcoming and comforting sense of homeliness that is hard to find anywhere else in Singapore.
The Blessed Sacrament Church will be closed in 2020 for a vital restoration called Project TOMR, or “Tent Of Meeting Restoration”. We cannot wait to see the transformation of this iconic church!
Blessed Sacrament Church
1 Commonwealth Dr, Singapore 149603