Our History


It was in 1972 when Rev Jonathan Kaan and Rev Paul Lai visited Ottawa and felt the need to plant a Chinese church to serve the growing population. With much prayer and support from Hebron Church in Hong Kong, Rev Lai started the work with just himself and his wife. They worked hard, knocking on the doors of Chinese homes, striking conversations with people they met on the street, distributing tracts in Chinatown, and fishing with Chinese high school students with the hopes of befriending the community.


In less than a year, the church began its first service with fifteen people in the basement of the Central Alliance Church, whose members provided tremendous support. As OCAC continued to grow over the years, it was clear the church needed a permanent assembly place. In mid-1979, OCAC acquired an old primary school at 22 Eccles Street.


With its own building, the church grew rapidly. It attracted many foreign students in the early days and they became the pillar of strength in the church. Young, energetic, and active, they turned the church to a very active and lively place. As more people joined OCAC, new changes began to unravel in the1980's. Families came to Ottawa and brought along their children who grew up with English as a primary language. The church that was initially bilingual (Cantonese and Mandarin) realized that it needed an English-speaking ministry. The first English-speaking fellowship was formed in 1982.


The Lord continued to bless OCAC in the 80's and the congregation kept growing. By the end of the decade, it was evident that more space was needed to conduct worship services and Sunday school classes. The old school was then demolished and a new church building was constructed and completed in January 1991. In early 90's, more families were added to the church due to an influx of immigrants from Hong Kong and China. Since then, OCAC has planted 3 new churches to cope with the growth of congregation.


Today, OCAC provides services for three language ministries (English, Cantonese, and Mandarin) at the same 22 Eccles Street location.