Timothy Tye
Cathedral of the Good Shepherd

Cathedral of the Good Shepherd, SingaporeCathedral of the Good Shepherd, Singapore (9 July, 2006)

The Cathedral of the Good Shepherd (GPS: 1.2961, 103.8511) is one of the oldest cathedrals in Singapore. It is located at the corner of Victoria Street with Bras Basah Road. The Cathedral was built in the 1840s, and designed in the shape of a Latin cross. The Roman Catholic church was established in Singapore as early as 1833, when an attap structure was constructed as the first Catholic church. The land, which is where the former St Joseph's Institution (and present Singapore Art Museum) is situated, was given by the Resident of Singapore, S.G. Bonham to J.B. Boucho, the French missionary who arrived in Singapore from Penang.

The original attap structure is located within the "European Town", the section of Singapore parcelled out in Stamford Raffles's 1822 Town Plan as the residential area for Europeans. When the building became overcrowded, the initial plan was to enlarge it. However, Father Jean-Marie Beurel persuaded Bishop Hilary Courvezy to construct the new church building elsewhere, and to keep the existing site for a school - and from there St Joseph's Institution was established.

S.G. Bonham offered the Catholic church a piece of land on the slopes of Fort Canning, but it was found unsuitable. The second option was a parcel surrounded by Victoria Street, Bras Basah Road and Queen Street. This one was accepted, and a design by Denis Lesley McSwiney was accepted. McSwiney's design borrows from the design of the original St Andrew's church by George Drumgoole Coleman.

The church (not yet a cathedral then) building was completed on 6 June, 1846 at a cost of $18,355.22, including furniture. It was only consecrated a cathedral much later, on 14 February 1897.

The Cathedral of the Good Shepherd was gazetted a National Monument of Singapore on 6 July 1973.


A Queen Street
Singapore 188533

Cathedral of the Good Shepherd, SingaporeCathedral of the Good Shepherd, Singapore (9 July, 2006)

Cathedral of the Good Shepherd, SingaporeCathedral of the Good Shepherd, Singapore (9 July, 2006)

Cathedral of the Good Shepherd, SingaporeCathedral of the Good Shepherd, as seen from across Victoria Street. (9 July, 2006)

Cathedral of the Good Shepherd is on the map of Victoria Street, Singapore

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