Morrison Protestant Chapel is located inside the Protestant cemetery where
150 British and American graves recall the days of the foreign trading and naval
presence in Macau.
Situated on the edge of the Camoes Gardens and adjoining the stately mansion
of the Fundacao Oriente, the Chapel serves as a focus for Macau’s English speaking
Morrison Chapel was built to serve Macau’s small Protestant minority during
the days of the foreign trading and naval presence in Macau. The stained glass
window shows an open Bible with Chinese characters for “In the beginning
was the Word”.
The Macau Protestant Chapel is a house of Prayer for all Nations.
The small stone building is also called “Morrison Chapel” in honour
Morrison. Robert Morrison was a noted nineteenth-century missionary and
He was born in Northumberland in 1782 and decided to become a missionary in
1804, following the death of his mother. He studied with the London Missionary
Society, and volunteered to go to China on their behalf. Having learned to read
and write Chinese with the help of a Chinese student who he met in London,
he sailed to Canton in 1807.
While living in China, he mastered both Cantonese and Mandarin. He published
a range of works in both English and Chinese including his Dictionary of the
Chinese Language (1815 1823) and a translation of the Bible (1819).
Morrison lived for many years in Macao. He married in 1809, and had three
children. Among other honours, Morrison was made a Doctor of Divinity by Glasgow
University and appointed Vice-President of the Anglo-Chinese College in Malacca.
He visited England in 1824 – 5 and was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society.
The Lit and Phil was presented with copies of his works at around this time.
Morrison remarried in England, his first wife having died in 1822, and then
returned to Macao where he lived until 1834. He was appointed Chinese Secretary
and Interpreter to Lord Napier, Superintendent for Trade with China in 1834,
and travelled to Canton to take up the post. He fell ill shortly after his arrival
and died on the 1st of August.
He was buried in the Old Protestant Cemetery in Macao.
Services and directions
The main service on Sundays is the Holy Communion which is at 9:00 and 11:00 a.m. There
is tea in the courtyard afterwards, and an opportunity to meet people. Who knows
– some might become your best friends in Macau. The Chapel and grounds are open
to visitors from 8-30 a.m. until 5-30 p.m.
How to find the Chapel: the No. 17 bus marked ‘Camoes’ terminates just outside
the Camoes Gardens (fare Patacas or HKD 2-50).
Looking towards the gardens the entrance gate to the Chapel and grounds is
across the square to your right – a metal gate opening in the wall.