Ap Chau Story Room

Sister Wai Yan Chan(Tai Po Church)

Thank God, after more than two years of preparations and the efforts from all parties, the Ap Chau Story Room was officially opened on April 8th, 2018. In addition to documenting the history of Ap Chau village, its development, culture and unique landforms, the Story Room also testifies to God's bountiful grace upon the Ap Chau villagers and His wonderful plan for spreading the gospel.

The villagers love to quote a phrase from an Ap Chau elder whenever they introduce Ap Chau, ‘There’s a church, a school, a water cistern’. This phrase precisely sums up Ap Chau’s development.

In the old days, Ap Chau was a deserted island. Fishermen only fished near the island and anchored their boats there. No one lived on Ap Chau Island. However, the gospel of the True Church spread to this area. A group of fishermen with a common religious belief decided to settle in Ap Chau, and the church was established in 1952. As a result, Ap Chau became the only fishing village in Hong Kong to believe in Christianity.

After the establishment of the church, this small fishing village began to be noticed by the government. They built a school in Ap Chau which gave the fisherfolk an opportunity for education. Thank God, although the living conditions were hard, with no water or electricity, the number of inhabitants still reached a peak of nearly one thousand. Later on, the Government decided to build a fresh water cistern and supplied running water to Ap Chau to improve the lives of the villagers. The development of Ap Chau began with the establishment of the church and gradually built up from there.

In later times, the fishing industry was declining, so many villagers left Ap Chau for the city and even went as far afield as the United Kingdom, to earn a living. They never imagined that in leaving their roots behind, they would end up spreading the teachings of the True Church far and wide. The Ap Chau villagers who moved to live in the UK did not forget their faith. They established churches and prayer houses in the UK. To date, eight churches have been established in various areas, passing down the faith to future generations. In recent years, the UK preachers, sisters and brothers have been going to Africa to develop the missionary work.

God's arrangement is truly wonderful. The elderly members who moved to the UK are extremely thankful whenever they mention Ap Chau. A group of illiterate fisherfolk were able to move to the UK, make a living and enjoy a good life. Moreover, they were able to spread the gospel. Although Ap Chau is a tiny fishing village on the smallest inhabited island in Hong Kong, yet God has chosen us. Not only do we not have to worry about our living in this world, we have gained the most precious gospel of eternal life. Through using a small fishing village to spread the gospel, His arrangement, His grace is really impossible to measure, it is beyond what we can imagine.

As a descendant of Ap Chau, whether reflecting on my upbringing or during the preparation period for this Story Room, I felt very thankful. Every household in the entire village had a common belief, everyone was very united and always ready to help. Whenever family members or villagers encountered difficulties, they would pray together and entrust to God. Even if everyone is living in a different country now, the relationship can be maintained because of our common faith. When the entire village, and the whole family, has the same faith, it is truly a great grace.

Thank God, although there are only a few villagers left living in Ap Chau now, I have felt His grace, His guidance and protection of this small island during the preparation work for the opening of the Story Room. Thank God, this opening of the Story Room has brought more recognition to this place called Ap Chau. Different newspapers have also mentioned the church, many people have expressed interest in visiting Ap Chau. Not only do we hope more people will understand the cultural history and landscape of Ap Chau through the Story Room, but we also hope more will come to know True Jesus Church and be added to the Lord’s name.

May Ap Chau once again become a place to preach the gospel.

“Unless the Lord builds the house, They labor in vain who build it; Unless the Lord guards the city, The watchman stays awake in vain.” (Psalms 127:1)

“And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.” (Romans 8:28)