Like most Chinese Churches in North America, the ECCT started out as a college student Bible study group.
In 1971, Rev Paul Shen of ECC of Seattle along with Professor K.T. Tang of Pacific Lutheran University in Tacoma conducted a weekly bible study with a group of PLU students. A year later when Rev Shen had to move to Hong Kong to start a new church there, Rev Jeremy Law of ECC Seattle assisted by Dr William Ho continued the student ministry.
In 1974, when Prof Tang was on sabbatical, Dr C. C. Chan, a surgeon, and his wife Amy happened to move to Tacoma to start his surgical practice. (Dr Chan was a classmate of Dr Ho in medical school.) They continued the ministry and in the following year, a Sunday worship was started for the students and a few Chinese families living in the Tacoma area.
In 1976, ECCT became official modelled on ECC Seattle and adopted her governance and bylaws. Trinity Lutheran Church located across the street from the PLU Campus was kind enough to let us use their chapel for our Sunday worship. We had only about 30-40 people in attendance on Sunday because there were only a small Chinese population in the area at that time.
In 1997, we were able to purchase our own facility with unhindered future expansion. Since the founding of ECCT, we had a total of 5 full-time pastors in succession: Rev Joel Shen, Rev Daniel Chan, Rev C.K. Yau, and Rev Jeffrey Kung.
Rev Luke Yuan from Texas joined us in June 2016 when Rev Kung retired. Our church growth was hampered by several factors, one of which was some church members saw the need to plant a new church in Olympia, thus depleted our congregations. Another factor is that there are no major employers in Tacoma so students who graduated had to leave. In spite of these factors our church continues to grow. Today, we have a weekly Sunday worship attendance of about 150.
By March 2019 a usable space of 2800 square feet is added to our church building of 4800 square feet to accommodate our expanding ministries.
Looking back, there seemed to have the unseen hand of the Almighty God which moved various chess pieces to the right place at the right time to accomplish His purpose. There was no prior human planning of the whole process. If we surrender to His will, we are sure to see His hand to continue His mighty works in the Greater Tacoma area through ECCT.