The late Rev Dr Patrick Lau celebrated his 75th birthday with his children Ps Daphne Lau and Dwayne Lau, one month before his passing. All photos courtesy of Ps Daphne Lau unless otherwise stated.

The late Rev Dr Patrick Lau was a spiritual father to many, and an earthly father who loved his two children deeply.

Rev Dr Patrick Lau Kim Thiam, recognised for his leadership of the Assemblies of God in Singapore, was called home to the Lord on Tuesday (April 16).

He passed away one month after celebrating his 75th birthday. He is survived by his wife Dr Rina Nga and his children, Rev Daphne June Lau and Dwayne Lau.

Pastor Lau, as many fondly called him, accepted Jesus as his Lord and Saviour in 1965 at the age of 18.

His salvation took place at a Truth for Youth Christian Movement meeting conducted by his secondary school English teacher, Rev Pang Ek Kwan, and he began worshiping at Bethel Assembly.

Ps Lau and his late wife Rev Evelyn Elizabeth David-Lau served side by side at Calvary Assembly. She passed away in 2017. Photo courtesy of Calvary Assembly of God.

In 1966, he responded to the call to enter into full-time ministry, and would be a pastor for the next 57 years. 

After attending Berean Bible School in 1967, he pastored Glad Tidings Church in Klang, Malaysia for two years. 

Upon returning to Singapore, he shepherded Calvary Assembly of God as its Senior Pastor for the next 42 years.

He never turned back after entering full-time ministry in 1967.

In 2013, he pioneered Faith Fellowship International, which he served as Senior Pastor till his passing. 

Ps Lau served the Assemblies of God of Singapore for 35 years, and was General Superintendent from 1977 to 1979, and 1981 to 2009.

For being the longest-serving General Superintendent in the world, he was presented an award by the AG World Fellowship.

He also served in many capacities, including chairing the Asia Pacific Assemblies of God Fellowship for seven years and organising the 15th Pentecostal World Conference in Singapore.

Ps Lau preaching at Yoido Full Gospel Church in Seoul, Korea. Year unknown. All photos courtesy of Ps Daphne Lau, unless otherwise stated.

He represented the Assemblies of God on a number of boards, including the Evangelical Fellowship of Singapore and the National Council of Churches Singapore.

By all accounts a passionate pastor, a devoted husband and father, a legendary culinary master and a mentor to generations of young Christians, Ps Lau leaves behind a rich legacy of faith and Christlike love.

“No turning back”

An official tribute to him by the Assemblies of God Singapore said of him: “Rev Dr Lau’s life was a testament to his unwavering dedication and passion for serving God and the Assemblies of God Singapore. 

“He never turned back after entering full-time ministry in 1967, and his service to God grew beyond its humble beginnings. 

“For over 42 years, Rev Dr Lau dedicated himself to his role as senior pastor of Calvary Assembly, providing unwavering care and concern for his congregation.

“His spirit of service extended to his position as General Superintendent for 32 years, where he nurtured and guided the Assemblies of God Bible College (now known as ACTS college), and Teen Challenge Singapore.

Ps Lau served as the host of the 15th Pentecostal World Conference, held in Singapore in 1989.

“His exemplary leadership has been instrumental in our journey, and we owe our current position to his hard work and dedication.

“As we remember him, let us take heart in the assurances he found in 1 Thessalonians 5:24 and his inspiring words: ‘No turning back. Don’t start if you don’t plan to go on for good. If he calls, He provides, He opens the door, He teaches you.’

“Rev Dr Lau’s life is a powerful reminder that with faith and commitment, we, too, can accomplish great things.”

“His love for God was unshakable”

Ps Lau’s life and ministry evoke admiration and praise from his co-labourers, as well as his own children.

Rev Naomi Dowdy, the former Senior Pastor of Trinity Christian Centre said: “Rev Patrick Lau came into ministry during the turbulent transitional years of Singapore and Malaysia separating, and Singapore becoming an independent nation.

“It was in this environment that Rev Lau was elected to lead the Assemblies of God Singapore.

“He was a fighter for things he believed in. When he set his mind on something, no one could change his views. Thus, he persevered and laid a foundation for the work of God’s Kingdom.

“His love for God and the ministry was unshakable.”

Since he was called into ministry at the age of 19, Ps Lau dedicated himself entirely to his calling.

Rev Robert Lum, the Senior Pastor of Eternal Life Assembly and former General Superintendent of the Assemblies of God recalled Dr Lau’s pastoral heart.

“I remember the time when his heart was broken, because he had to make the difficult decision to discipline a minister.

During Singapore’s turbulent transitional years, he persevered and laid a foundation for the work of God’s Kingdom.

“His love can be seen in his ardent support for his children to pursue God’s calling for their lives.”

Rev Daphne June Lau, a pastor at Eternal Life Assembly said her father “put his heart and soul to be the best father anyone could ever ask for.”

“I am blessed to have a dad who has shown me a glimpse of my Heavenly Father. He was always full of love and compassion, always there to protect, provide generously, cheer me on, pick me up when I was down, guide me when I felt lost, disciplined me when I was out of line, embrace me when I felt lonely and sad, listened when I needed to rant, and rejoiced with me when I achieved.

“My dad was immensely sacrificial. He always put others before himself. As his kids, we were definitely of utmost importance to him.

“He never missed out on being a part of our growing up years… Dad invested his life in us and who were are today is a result of his patient and loving sowing.

“I honour my dad, not just for being a wonderful and amazing dad, but also for being resilient in his 57 years in ministry. Dad as a leader in the ministry has been like an eagle. By the grace of God, he has been strong, resilient, wise, and quick thinking.”

Pastor Lau celebrated his 75th birthday with his children Ps Daphne Lau and Dwayne Lau, one month before his passing.

Dwayne Lau, a theatre actor, credited his father for his acting skills. “Many may not know this, but my dad’s an excellent performer. He has amazing stage presence,” he said.

“Even before I did theatre, he already did one man shows. His famous sermon ‘The whip, the hammer, and the cross’ would have him tell the whole crucifixion story by himself, complete with costumes, lights, props, songs and sound effects!”

Dwayne once said of his father: “While he was a spiritual father to many, he never fell short of being father to us.”

His impact on generations of youth

Ps Lau has touched the lives of countless young people, many of whom have gone on to build lives that positively impact others.

Jay Ong, who grew up in Calvary Assembly was 12 years old when he encountered Ps Lau’s gentle leadership.

Ps Jay Ong (extreme left) was one of the many youth who grew up under the godly guidance of Ps Lau. Photo courtesy of Ps Jay Ong.

Today a pastor in the same church, Ps Jay wrote in a tribute: “You taught me that a godly leader needs to be slow to anger.

“While he was a spiritual father to many, he never fell short of being father to us.”

“When I was 12, I broke one of the windows at church and had to tell you about it. I was admittedly scared and thought that I would be scolded harshly by you.

“Instead, you asked if I was okay and forgave me. More than 20 years later, I still look at that window from time to time and remember your kindness.”

Jennifer Heng, founder of Safe Place which supports women undergoing crisis pregnancies, shared about “my first pastor” on her Facebook page.

“So much of who I am as a Christian is because of the foundation that was built when I was a new believer under Ps Lau’s care. 

“He always told me, ‘Jenn, your life is a miracle.’ To me, Pastor Lau, YOUR life is a miracle.”

Benny Se Teo, founder of restaurant Eighteen Chefs which provides troubled youth a path to reintegrate into society, called Ps Lau “a beacon of light in the darkness of times”.

Restauranteur Benny Se Teo (second from left) encountered Ps Lau when he was a youth at Teen Challenge, and made a lifelong friend. Photo from Benny Se Teo’s Facebook page.

He wrote in a Facebook post: “As a young lad at Teen Challenge, I first crossed paths with him witnessing his unwavering faith and wisdom during chapel services.

“Over the years, our paths intertwined once more as I ventured into the restaurant business. Pastor Lau became a steadfast supporter, gracing my steakhouse with his presence and even choosing it as a venue for his meetings.

“Though he may have left us physically, his spirit lives on in the hearts of all who were touched by his kindness and devotion.”


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About the author

Theresa Tan

God gave Theresa one talent: the ability to write. Today, she uses that one gift to share His goodness as far and wide as she can. When she's not working with words, this mother of three is looking for TikTok baking trends to try, watching Korean drama and making fun of her cats.