In tandem with the arrival of Methodism in Singapore in 1885, the Rev William Oldham, who spoke Tamil, initiated Tamil work with the Anglo-Tamil School as an outreach to the Tamils. Initially, the work was amongst Tamil prisoners as well as migrant Tamils and their families.
In 1887, the Rev. C W Underwood arrived from Ceylon and formed the Tamil Methodist Society, which led to the establishment of the Tamil Methodist Church (TMC) at Short Street. Through its outreach programmes to the Tamil-speaking and Indian nationals over its first 125 years, TMC Short Street is the mother church of the other six Tamil Methodist churches. TMC Short Street also spawned the only Telugu Methodist Church, the SG Telugu MC, a result of the Rev R Prabhu’s dedicated work among Telugu expatriates in Singapore. TMC Short Street has also been home to the Batak Protestant Church (Huria Kristen Batak) since 1980. TMC’s evangelistic outreach work in Cha’a (Johore, Malaysia) in 1926 bore fruit in the region’s first Methodist Church.
ETAC sent forth its first missionary in 1978. Eight others were later commissioned, with three of them being ordained as Elders.