In Australia, where I live, Kong Hee has never, to my knowledge, been covered by the Media. Nor does Kong Hee and his trials and troubles feature on social media sites, except for Churchwatch Central, an Australia based alt-right Christian fundamentalist church critique site, and sites like this my personal blog-site.

I commentate on Christian related themes and subjects of interest, particularly in the Pentecostal and Charismatic Churches.

In Singapore, the Kong Hee case is big news and it has head-lined media outlets for seven years and done great damage to Christianity and the Christian message in Singapore and beyond to other parts of Asia.

This is the trouble with these Prosperity Gospel Churches like City Harvest Church Singapore, Hillsong Global Church and C3 Global Church both based in Sydney Australia.

Hillsong is known internationally through it’s music. It has albums and songs constantly dominating the US gospel charts. People and Christians in the US aren’t attuned to how much of an amoral, immoral, lying, scamming cult Hillsong is. C3 Global Church isn’t much better.

All these Prosperity Gospel churches are only good for the fire. No one should tithe to them. No one should support them. No one should buy their products.

 

DR PHIL PRINGLE HEAD PASTOR OF C3 CHURCH FALSE PROPHET EXTRAORDINAIRE: “AW MAYBE I’VE MADE SOME MISTAKES BUT AW SHUCKS…THIS ONE OF DEAR BROTHER PASTOR KONG HEE GOING TO THE CLINK IS A BAD ONE. DEVIL GET BEHIND ME. I KNOW YOU’VE POSSESSED THE WHOLE SINGAPOREAN COURT SYSTEM”

Dr Phil “lying” (in his bed). Doctor Phil: “Lucifer you really are a bad ole devil possessing the whole of the Singaporean legal system and those horrid Singaporean judges who sentenced my dear spiritual son Kong Hee to eight years in Changi Prison Complex. But tell me Lucifer, when did you learn to sing and play music as bad a Kong Hee’s wife Sun Yeow Ho? And please can you stop playing that fiddle so loud. I’m suffering from one of my severe migraines and that screeching sound your making is sending me to hell”

Pope Brian of Hillsong

 

The Straits Times

City Harvest appeal: Reduced sentences draw mixed reactions online

Within four hours of the verdict’s announcement, City Harvest became the second-ranked trending topic on Twitter in Singapore after Syria, and Kong Hee the fourth-ranked.
Within four hours of the verdict’s announcement, City Harvest became the second-ranked trending topic on Twitter in Singapore after Syria, and Kong Hee the fourth-ranked.PHOTO: SCREENGRAB FROM TWITTER, FACEBOOK

“SINGAPORE – Social media has been abuzz over the three-judge panel’s decision to reduce the sentences of the six City Harvest Church (CHC) leaders in what prosecutors called the largest case of misuse of charitable funds in Singapore history.

The High Court had delivered the verdict on the leaders’ appeals against their convictions and sentences for misappropriating millions in church funds, as well as the prosecution’s call for longer sentences on Friday morning (April 7).

Within four hours of the verdict’s announcement, City Harvest became the second-ranked trending topic on Twitter in Singapore after Syria, and Kong Hee the fourth-ranked.

Meanwhile, comments posted on the Facebook pages of news outlets announcing the verdict have run into the thousands over the same time frame. And threads on the verdict have also started on the HardwareZone forum site, and online forum Reddit.

Opinions are split.

 Church founder Kong Hee 52, who was handed the stiffest sentence of an eight-year jail term in November 2015, will spend 3½ years behind bars instead.

Delivering their ruling, the judges had said it is a situation which involved no personal gain on the appellant’s part. They believed that their acts, especially in sham investments, would advance the interest of the church.

A Straits Times Facebook post announcing the reduction in sentences had attracted more than 500 comments in four hours, with the majority expressing disappointment that longer sentences had not been meted out.

Netizens like Jason Ko were derisive of how Kong, through his lawyer Senior Counsel Edwin Tong, had expressed disappointment that he was not acquitted.

“He is not the least bit repentant and yet (got rewarded) with (a) reduced sentence,” he wrote.

Netizen Edna Lim commented in the same thread that she had hoped for a stiffer sentence, which would “give a serious warning to all religious bodies that…(they) should not misuse the (donations) and trust” of their followers.

The other five – deputy senior pastor Tan Ye Peng, 44; former CHC finance managers Serina Wee, 40, and Sharon Tan, 41; former CHC finance committee member John Lam, 49; and former CHC fund manager Chew Eng Han, 56 – also had their jail terms reduced after the court, in a split decision, allowed their appeals against conviction and found them guilty of a less serious charge of criminal breach of trust.

CHC members have expressed support for Kong and the church leaders on platforms like Instagram and Facebook, and said they were relieved that the case, which started in 2010 when criminal investigation began, has almost reached its conclusion.

Both sides have further legal recourse in what is known as a criminal reference. The procedure allows either side to bring the case higher by asking the Court of Appeal to make a ruling on a question of law of public interest.

Meanwhile a more contemplative mood has taken hold among some in the Christian community. Netizen Alvin Yeo, who described himself as a “proud Christian”, acknowledged that Kong “deserves a second chance”.

But he is glad that the jail sentences have been meted out.

“Now that we know the pastor of this church is guilty, all I can say is he is a criminal and I believe in the law of my country.”

Thir.st, a digital platform centred on issues related to Christianity, posted on Facebook that one must “draw the lessons we have to” from the CHC saga, and “fix what needs to be fixed”.

“But do not curse, do not stumble, do not scorn. Let mercy triumph over judgment,” it wrote.”