Wednesday, June 2, 2010

It Pays To Maintain A Low Profile

City Harvest Church is a high profile church, with a capital "H". It counts a number of prominent business leaders among its congregation and its events have links all around the world. Some of these names include WyWy Group chairman Y.Y. Wong and Bayan Tree Holdings' Ho Kwon Ping. Also movie producer Jack Neo. Founder and Pastor Kong Hee calls himself a businessman and wife Ho Yeow Sun is the aspiring pop star flashing her boobs in a plunging neckline Armani gown at the Hollywood Film Festival.

Barely 10 hours after he wrapped up the recent 5-day Asia Conference organized by the church, which featured plenary sessions and workshops spiced with beauty  pageants, talent competitions and a special performance by popular Taiwan songstress Tsai Chin, the Commercial Affairs Department moved in on him. In all, police from the CAD rounded up 17 church members for questioning at the Cantonment Complex, and took away their files and documents from homes and offices.

City Harvest Church is big. It has a congregation of 33,000. It occupies a $48 million compound in Jurong West, complete with titanium clad building and a $583,000 fountain. The church has a 30-minute television broadcast program Harvest Time, which is televised on 14 Cable Television Networks and satellites with a potential viewership of about 1.486 billion. Although the CAD claim it has nothing to do with the raid, City Harvest did raise its profile even higher with its $310,000,000 stake in Suntec Singapore International Convention and Exhibition Centre. The Commissioner of Charities had stepped in to question the church about the mega-deal.

During the April 14 interview with Charlie Rose, Lee Hsien Loong claimed that Falun Gong had appeared as a flash mob one day in front of the inner sanctum, and it was the first they (Chinese Government) ever heard of Falun Gong, and "that scared the daylights out of them." So what, Charlie Rose had asked, "But is it a threat to them?"
"When they discovered who was in the Falun Gong and how many of the senior officials had joined the secret group they were... they were shaken", replied Lee. God is not scary, but monied people are.

No comments:

Post a Comment