Churches on Gulangyu Island, Xiamen

Updated: 01 Jun 2015
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Gulangyu Island is one of the earliest places in China that the gospel of Christ was preached.

The island is renowned to visitors as “Piano Island” and for its picturesque landscapes; however, the island is less known for its perfectly preserved architecture, especially its collection of majestic churches. 

Catholic Church (天主堂)

The church served as the Spanish Consulate and French Consulate in succession. In 1916, Manuel Prat, the Spanish missionary of Ordo Dominicanorum, was appointed as bishop of the Xiamen parish. Manuel Prat exchanged the original chapel at Tianwei Road with the French Consulate at Lujiao Road and used the consulate as a church.

The Gothic church, designed by a Spanish architect, covers a floor area of 232 square metres. Most of the construction materials are bricks, stones and wood. It has three floors, with the first floor serving as the entrance hall, the second for the choir, and the third for the bell tower.

Its lintel over the window is engraved with the Latin characters ‘ECCLESLA CATHOLICA’, which means ‘Catholic Church’ in English. It is the only Gothic Catholic church in Xiamen.

Add: No.34, Lujiao Road

Trinity Church (三一堂)
Shaped like a cross with a yellow-tile roof, octagonal bell tower and erect cross on the top of the roof, the church has 12 entrance gates and 16 windows on its four sides, and all have good ventilation, day-lighting design and evacuative functions.

The church was basically completed in 1934, but its interior ceilings and the octagonal bell tower were not completed until 1945. It was named in the sixth batch of key cultural heritage sites under state protection in 2006.

In 1936, The Church of Christ in China held its 2nd Bible Study Meeting in the Trinity Church on Gulangyu Island.
Add: No.67, Anhai Road

Gospel Hall (福音堂)

The church, built in 1903, covers a gross floor area of 375 square metres and can host about 1,000 believers. In 1926, it was approved as the site of the 'Gulangyu Church Association', which is a Chinese-only church association.

It even set up the Fumin Primary School with the London Society. Statistics show that believers donated 4,000 Francs in average every year.

In 2001, the church went under reconstruction led by Trinity Church to be rebuilt into the Baiheyuan Nursing Home.

Add: No.40, Huangyan Road 
Renaissance Church (复兴堂)

The church belonged to the party led by Watchman Nee, a Chinese Christian author and church leader during the early 20th century. In 1966, when the Cultural Revolution began, all church activities were suspended and the church was occupied by a construction company.

Wang De'en, the founder and presbyter of the Renaissance Church, was born in 1914 and became a missionary in his 20s. During the Cultural Revolution, his house and other properties were searched and confiscated, making his life even harder.

In 1995, the church bought a small land parcel beside Fuxing Road and built the new church, which was completed in 1997. It is the only church that was built after liberation on Gulangyu.

Add: No.2, Fuxing Road
Union Church (协和礼拜堂)
The neo-classical style church was built by devout Christians from Europe in 1863. Foreign and English-speaking local Christians gathered here for religious purposes and cultural discussions, leaving Piano Island one of its legacies.

It is believed by most historians that the church is where the great writer and linguist Lin Yutang married his wife Lin Tsuifeng in 1919.

The church came under the control of local authorities in 1949, closed in 1952 and later converted into part of a hospital.

Add: Lujiao Road
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Comments Area ( Total Comments: 1 )
ppan8888 Commented on 09 Jul 2016
Hi Abedo, I think you should post your comments in the Sports section. This article is about churches in Gulanyi Island and your comments are not appropriate here at all. God does not look kindly on people and sinners who disrespect Him!