Roman Catholic Church, Changi 1943

RC chapel

‘The Japanese stopped all other meetings at various times, together with entertainments and social gatherings, but they hardly ever interfered with our church activities. One had an opportunity as a priest of doing something which is denied to us in our ordinary life here at home. For once, and for three and a half years, the thin veneer of civilization, or reticence, had been stripped from men. We were all down to bedrock. One saw people as they really were. There was no reason for humbug or cant; many men had no use at all for religion, but great numbers had – and these men were no longer shy about the faith which they had found.’

Source: Down To Bedrock (the diary & secret notes of a Far East prisoner of war Chaplain) by Eric Cordingly, Pg 151; permission by Louse Reynolds, daughter.

‘There were also church services for all denominations. The clergy themselves were varied in their attitudes and bearing under the circumstances. We frequently discussed theological questions with them and most of them, particularly the Catholic priests, were well educated and interesting to talk to.’
Source: You’ll Never Get Off The Island by Keith Wilson; 1989, Pg 86