Archbishop Goh poses for a photo with members of the Congregation of the Disciples of the Lord at their new community house. Fr Peter Zhang (second row, second from left), Fr Joseph Zhang Wei (second row, extreme right) and Fr Joseph Zhang Liyong (front row, second from right) are serving in Singapore.Archbishop Goh poses for a photo with members of the Congregation of the Disciples of the Lord at their new community house. Fr Peter Zhang (second row, second from left), Fr Joseph Zhang Wei (second row, extreme right) and Fr Joseph Zhang Liyong (front row, second from right) are serving in Singapore.

A Singapore house for the Congregation of the Disciples of the Lord (CDD) has been established in Faber Gardens in Upper Thomson. Archbishop William Goh blessed it on Jan 4.

The CDD, a clerical Religious order, was founded in 1931 in China. However, due to the rise of communism in the country, some members of the congregation went to Taiwan and set up a General House.

There are currently three CDD priests serving as assistant priests in Singapore – Fr Peter Zhang (Church of the Holy Cross), Fr Joseph Zhang Wei (Church of the Risen Christ) and Fr Joseph Zhang Liyong (Church of the Holy Trinity).

Speaking at the blessing, Archbishop Goh thanked God for the Religious and noted that the Religious life is “very important to the Church – the apex of the Church’s holiness”.

He also highlighted the community life of the Religious. “A Religious house is to give hope that there is such a thing called a communion of life,” Archbishop Goh said.

He added that he hopes the service of the CDD priests in the parishes would attract vocations to the congregation.

The event saw Fr Peter Zhang, the CDD vice general, speaking about the congregation’s founder, Cardinal Celso Costantini, and the congregation itself. CDD superior general, Fr John Chia from Taiwan, later celebrated Mass.

More than 80 guests, including several other Religious and priests, attended the blessing ceremony.

Fr Chia told CatholicNews that some China-born CDD seminarians had been sent to Singapore for their formation and studies and stayed on to serve in the archdiocese after their ordination.

Now with three such priests in Singapore, it was felt that the time was “suitable” for the establishment of a community house.

Fr Chia said the house would allow the three priests to “lead a community life” and to promote vocations to their congregation. The house could also be opened to laypeople for activities such as Bible sharing.

Fr Peter Zhang said the priests would continue to reside in their parishes but will return to their house once a week for gatherings and prayer.

Apart from Singapore, Taiwan and China, the congregation is also present in Indonesia, Canada and Malaysia.

By Darren Boon
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