City Harvest Church Case: Kong Hee's Wife Sun Ho Suspension Lifted

May 13, 2013 08:36 AM EDT
Kong Hee second left founding pastor of City Harvest Church holding hands with wife Ho Yeow Sun third left as they leave the subordinate courts in Singapore  <br/>
Kong Hee (second left), founding pastor of City Harvest Church, holding hands with wife Ho Yeow Sun (third left) as they leave the subordinate courts in Singapore.

The Singapore Commissioner of Charities (COC) has lifted the suspension of Ho Yeow Sun, wife of Kong Hee, enabling her to immediately resume her status as an executive member of City Harvest Church (CHC).

Responding to the COC's letter, Sun said in the CHC's statement today, "I am very thankful to Jesus that I can resume my executive duties at such a crucial time for City Harvest Church. I am truly glad that I have been fully vindicated. God’s grace abounds and His faithfulness truly never ends! I want to thank the members of CHC for always standing with our church and our leaders. Your unceasing prayers are moving mountains and are so important to us in the days to come.”

Moreover, COC has agreed to the church's request to extend the deadline for eight executive leaders of CHC - Pastor Kong Hee, Pastor Tan Ye Peng, Serina Wee, Sharon Tan, John Lam, Chew Eng Han, Teo Meng How and Jacqueline Tan - to submit representation to COC's proposal to remove them from their positions in the church.

Last month, the COC had notified these executive leaders and invited them to make representations on its proposal by May 13. However, as a "goodwill gesture", the commission has allotted an extension of two more months.

Executive Pastor of CHC, Rev. Aries Zulkarnain, said in the statement, "On behalf of the CHC Board, I also want to thank each and every one of you for your steadfast prayers and positive confessions, and for your faith in God."

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"As the trial begins this Wednesday, I ask you to continue praying for the six and their families, and for our church to stand strong at this time, and be united." Zulkarnain said.

City Harvest Church is a non-denominational megachurch in Singapore, founded in 1989 by Kong Hee and his wife Sun Ho.

In June 2012, Kong Hee and five other church members were arrested and charged with conspiracy to commit criminal breach of trust for misusing at least SGD$23 million (US$18.6 million) of church money, much of it to finance Sun Ho's secular music career. The accused have yet to enter a plea in the case.

In the midst of its leaders battling criminal charges of embezzlement, City Harvest Church has opened its 48th overseas branch, in Orange County, California.

The church, which is CHC's first in the United States and its farthest branch from Singapore, joins a network of 47 others in places such as Malaysia, Taiwan and Australia.