Grace Memorial Church

The Grace Memorial Church was first built in the 26th year in the reign of Emperor Guangxu of the Qing Dynasty. Minister Qi Qingcai, one of the founders of the church, was one of the initiators of the Three-self Patriotic Movement in China. Originally located on North Sichuan Road in Hongkou District, the church was moved to Wangjiasha Park (today West Beijing Road) after the Incident of August 13, later to the second floor of Ping’an Theater at the crossing of North Shaanxi Road, and to the present site at 375 North Shaanxi Road in 1941. In 1958 the Grace Memorial Church began to give combined services, becoming the only combined service church in Jing’an District.  In 1994 it was listed by the Municipal Government as a historical and cultural relic under municipal protection. Given the dilapidation of the building, the church began to be renovated in 1998 under the leadership of the Christian Association and Christian three-Self Patriotic Association of Jing’an District (the person in charge of the renovation was Qi Changyi, son of Minister Qi Qingcai and now Director of the Christian three-Self Patriotic Association of Jing’an District). The renovation was completed in 2002. It can hold over 1300 Christians. At present there are over 9000 Christians in Jing’an District.

The location of Grace Memorial Church is the golden triangle for business and commerce on Nanjing Road. The Former Residence of the Song Family is right beside the church. After the church was renovated, more and more overseas people began to come for religious services. With an increasing influence, it has become an important window for the Christian foreign affairs of Shanghai.