The church was built between 1449 and 1525. In 1621 a wooden spire was added to the tower, designed by Hendrik de Keyser. Poor quality of its wood caused the spire to be demolished in 1645. A stone cube was added to the tower, which proved too heavy for the foundation in 1650. New piles were driven under the tower and in 1655 the tower stood straight again.
This basilica was the first all stone building in Rotterdam. Many important events took place here. The last priest of the Laurenskerk was Hubertus Duifhuis. The reformation took place in 1572 and the Laurenskerk became a protestant church, as it is untill now. Ministers of the church include Laurens Johannes Jacobus van Oosterzee, Abraham Hellenbroek, Jan Scharp and J.R. Callenbach, who wrote a book about the history of the church a few years before the Rotterdam Blitz on May 14, 1940 when the Laurenskerk was heavily damaged. Architect J.J.P. oud opposed rebuilding in 1950 and in 1952, Queen Juliana of the Netherlands laid the foundation stone for the restoration, which was completed in 1968.