One of the earliest names for the church at Kawaiaha‘o was the King’s Chapel. Kawaiahaʻo Church was commissioned by Queen Kaʻahumanu during the reigns of Kamehameha II and Kamehameha III. The current building replaced previous thatched churches and was designed by Rev. Hiram Bingham. The church was constructed between 1836 and 1842 of 14,000 slabs of coral rock quarried from an offshore reef on the southern coast of Oʻahu.
Perhaps the greatest occasion of all occurred on June 5, 1825 when ten Hawaiians made “a full declaration of their desire to be numbered among the disciples of Christ.” These were Kalanimōku, Ka‘ahumanu, Kapule, Kapi‘olani, Keali‘iahonui, Kalakua, Namahana (or Opi‘ia,) Kaiu, La‘anui and Richard Kala‘aia‘ulu (who had arrived from the Cornwall School in 1823.) These were not just any Hawaiians, they represented the high chiefs at the time. They were the Ali‘i Founders of Kawaiaha‘o.