Armenian Apostolic Church of St. Gregory the Illuminator

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Singapore's Oldest Church, Armenian Apostolic Church of St. Gregory the Illuminator
At one time the Armenian community was very influential in Singapore, as well as in Calcutta and Java, working as lawyers, merchants and entrepreneurs. To serve the community, in life and in death, the Armenian Church — officially called the Armenian Apostolic Church of St. Gregory the Illuminator — was built in 1835, and was the first permanent place of Christian worship in Singapore. Designed by Irish architect, George D. Coleman, who helped Raffles design Singapore’s original town plan in the 1822, the church’s lovely graveyard is as impressive as the tropical neo-classical building itself. More garden than cemetery, it’s open to the public and its wrought-iron benches and manicured lawns are the setting for a small collection of elegant white marble tombstones of prominent Armenians of yestetryear, including Agnes Joaquim who discovered Singapore’s national flower the Vanda Miss Joaquim orchid.
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