By Josephine Jalleh, The Star online
After a nine-month break, the sound of hymns at Sunday church service rang out within the walls of the now-refurbished 19th century St George’s Church in Farquhar Street.
Hundreds of church-goers dressed in their Sunday best gathered at the landmark church for service yesterday – the first since the completion of its renovation last month.
It was reported that the RM1.8mil restoration project, under the National Heritage Department’s Ninth Malaysia Plan allocation, began in April last year.
Bishop of the Anglican Church of Malaysia Rt Rev Ng Moon Hing told the congregation the 195-year-old church had weathered all storms and the opening yesterday marked a milestone in the history of the oldest Anglican church in South-East Asia. The church was built in 1816.
He said it would be a grand view when the church is lit up from 7.30pm to 10pm every night.
In their Sunday best: Church-goers attending the first mass at the restored St George’s Church in Penang yesterday.
A ceremony was also performed to induct Venerable Charles Samuel as the parish vicar.
For the last nine months while renovations were going on, church-goers had attended Sunday services at a hall in the premises.
Nurse Alice Lee, 39, said she made it a point to attend services in the church whenever she was in Penang.
“The structure of the church looks better now. We attend church for spiritual needs but the refurbished church is a pride for all Anglicans. It has become a nicer and better worship area in the heart of George Town,” she said.
Another member of the church said the historical building looked brighter now.
“It also looks a bit like a museum except that it has a majestic look about it,” she said, adding that she has attended the church since she was young.
The church was declared one of the country’s 50 National Heritage treasures in 2007.