Yueh Hai Ching Temple

The year is 2024. ChatGPT is taking over the world, Jurong Bird Park kena rebranded to Bird Paradise already, and you still don’t have a girlfriend/boyfriend. If the only thing swiping on Tinder is giving you is a finger ache, then it might be time to pay Yueh Hai Ching Temple a visit.

Just a quick walk from Raffles Place MRT, Yueh Hai Ching Temple is colloquially known as Singapore’s “Temple of Love” thanks to stories of people finding their soulmates after coming here to pray for one. How’s that for a fun lunch break idea?

History of Yueh Hai Ching Temple

Before we get into the juicy details about the temple’s love stories, it’s worth learning a thing or two about its past.

Image credit: Roots

Also known as Wak Hai Cheng Bio in Teochew, Yueh Hai Ching Temple stands as one of Singapore’s oldest Taoist temples. While the temple’s exact origin story is spotty, what we do know is that it was first built by Teochew immigrants who travelled to the little red dot from China. 

It hasn’t been confirmed for sure, but most sources seem to agree that it was first built sometime between 1820-1826. The temple started out with humble roots as an attap shrine dedicated to the Chinese sea goddess Mazu, and seafarers from China would frequent the temple grounds to show their gratitude for their safe voyages into Singapore. 

The temple’s name also translates to “Temple of the Calm Sea” – an ode to the goddess it was built for.

The temple has come a long way since its humble attap roots, now holding 2 shrines within its grounds.
Image credit: Southeast Asian Ceramic Society

The Ngee Ann Kongsi began managing the temple in 1845, with renovation plans underway to expand the space. Soon, it became more than just a place of worship – the growing Teochew community in Singapore saw Yueh Hai Ching Temple as a place they could come together to meet up and mingle.

Image credit: Roots

Over the years, the temple has gained recognition for its rich heritage and cultural significance, with it getting its stamp as an official national monument of Singapore in 1996.

Finding true love through prayers

Okay, now for the reason you guys even clicked on the article in the first place. Can you actually find love with mere prayer? Perhaps you can – and you don’t have to be a certified #LuckyGirl who just discovered the Law of Attraction either.

Enter 23-year-old Pimmada Suksiri. Hailing from Thailand, Pimmada visited Yueh Hai Ching Temple while on holiday in May 2022. The reason? The temple houses a shrine dedicated to Yue Lao, known in Chinese mythology as the god of love and marriage.

Pimmada and her now-husband Brandon Yeo.
Image credit: The Ngee Ann Kongsi via Facebook

While the temple was closed when she first popped by, her 2nd visit was successful and she managed to make some prayers for her family. 

Here’s where things got interesting – her relatives back home who reportedly were facing money problems struck the lottery right after this. This prompted Pimmada to return to the temple to pray for a partner before she left.

Honestly, slay.
Image credit: The Ngee Ann Kongsi via Facebook

Fast forward a few months later and Pimmada met Brandon Yeo, a Singaporean who was studying in Bangkok, at a gathering their friends were hosting. Despite an initial communication barrier, the couple got into a relationship and married each other soon after. K-drama WHO?!

“That’s just a coincidence!” you yell. “Love is not real wan!!11!1!”

Another success story under Yue Lao’s belt is that of Mah Chun How and Kang Say See, who met after both of them had prayed at the temple to find a spouse on separate occasions.

Mr Mah and Ms Kang.
Image credit: The Ngee Ann Kongsi via Facebook

The pair then met through relatives and didn’t know about their visits to the temple until after their first date. Realising they’d each finally found the one, the pair decided to get married at the temple in 2016.

Talk about a match made in heaven.

Yueh Hai Ching Temple – visit Singapore’s Temple of Love

Whether you believe in fate or not, the history behind Yueh Hai Ching Temple and its couples is fascinating regardless. The temple continues to receive Taoist devotees and hopeful romantics today and probably will for a long time to come, so we’re sure there’ll be more love stories to follow.

So the next time you find yourself in the Raffles Place area, drop by for a visit. And hey, maybe you’ll find yourself deleting those apps from your phone soon enough. 😉

Address: 30B Phillip Street, Singapore 048696
Opening hours: 8am-5pm, Daily
Telephone: 6536 6851

Book a guided tour of Yueh Hai Ching Temple and other places of worship in the Telok Ayer and Chinatown area, and learn about more cultural sites in Singapore:

Image credit: Wikipedia, The Ngee Ann Kongsi via Facebook
Originally published on 15th April 2023.

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