History

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"To Be a Christ-centered Family That Loves and Serves One Another with Joy and Humility"

CHURCH OF OUR LADY STAR OF THE SEA

 

History

With a growing number of Catholics in Sembawang, the British Naval Base in Sembawang, which was opened in 1926, priests from the Church of Our Lady of Lourdes were given permission to extend their ministry to this fledgling community.

Church services then were conducted in a makeshift building with Sunday Masses held within the premises of the original Naval Base School. At the end of WWII, a building situated at the far end of Jalan Kedai, off Canberra Road, formerly used as a school during the Japanese Occupation, was handed over to the Catholic community for church services. There they stayed until 1949.

Fr. Dominic Vendargon, (Aug 29, 1909 – Aug 3, 2005) was appointed by the then Bishop of Malacca & Singapore, Bishop Michel Olçomendy, M.E.P. to formulate an autonomous parish for the Naval Base workers and residence in that area.

In August 1950, Fr. Vendargon was succeeded by Fr. Albert Fortier (Apr 24, 1911- Jan 13, 1998) who conducted everything, from Masses, marriages and all other rites, at the Japanese school.

By 1952, the old school had become so rundown and unsafe that the British Colonial authorities advised Fr. Fortier to build a new church. Fr. Fortier found a plot of land in Jalan Sendudok which was part of the British Naval Base. The British Colonial authorities approved the site for a 21 year lease.

A new Church was dedicated on 13 December 1953, the 3rd Sunday in Advent, as the Church of Our Lady Star of the Sea by the Apostolic Delegate Monsignor Lucas. It cost a total of S$53,000.00. The parish house was added on in May 1954 after which Fr Fortier was transferred to the Church of Our Lady of Lourdes.

Fr. Fortier was succeeded by Fr. Innocent Fernandez for the next 10 years, followed by Fr. Bernard Binet from 1964 to 1968. Fr. Albert Fortier returned to assume the role of Parish Priest in July 1968 and stayed on till his retirement in 1986.

Fr. Amiotte-Suchet Louis (Aug 29, 1917- Oct 17, 1998) was appointed to take over from the duties of Fr. Fortier.

Due to the expansion of the neighborhood and land acquisition by the government, a new site for the church was needed. The present site at Yishun St 22 was chosen and built at a cost of $6.3 million, including land cost. It was declared open by Archbishop Gregory Yong on 30 May 1992 which was also the Sacerdotal Golden Jubilee of Fr Albert Fortier.

New and younger priests were posted in as Assistant Parish Priests to provide much needed relief for Fr Amiotte amd Fr Fortier.

On 13 Jan 1998, at the age of 86, Fr Fortier was called to be with the Lord.

Nine months later, on 17 Oct 1998, while on home leave in France, Fr Louis Amiotte-Suchet also passed away at the age of 81. He was succeeded in 1998 by Fr Peter Koh who was followed by Fr Edward Lim in Sept 2003. Upon his transfer to the Church of the Holy Trinity, Fr JJ Fenelon became the new Parish Priest of Our Lady Star of the Sea in Sep 2009.  

Both Fr Fortier and Fr Amiotte worked hard over the years and lived to see the new church building officially opened. These two men have seen much action. Like true missionaries, they left everything behind, including home, family and country to serve the people of Singapore. Together with their fellow missionaries and our local priests, they have worked tirelessly to make the Parish of Our Lady Star of the Sea a beacon of hope in the north for those seeking the Lord’s Kingdom.

PARISH PRIESTS OF OUR LADY STAR OF THE SEA

1949 – 1950                 - Fr Dominic Vendargon

1950 – 1954                 - Fr Albert Fortier

1954 – 1964                 - Fr Innocent Fernandez

1964 – 1968                 - Fr Bernard Binet

1968 – 1987                 - Fr Albert Fortier

1987 – 1997                 - Fr Louis Amiotte (Assistant PP: Fr Henry Siew)

1998 – 2003                 - Fr Peter Koh (Assistant PP: Fr Edmund Chong and Fr                                     Augustine Joseph)

2003 – 2009                 - Fr Edward Lim (Asst PP: Fr Amal Raj; Fr JJ Fenelon and Fr Noel Chin)

2009 – 2012                 - Fr Joseph John Fenelon (Fr Noel Chin and Fr Luke Fong)

2012 - 2015 May           - Fr Joseph John Fenelon (Fr Stanislaus Pang and Fr Paul Yeo)

2015Jun - Present          - Fr Greg van Giang (Fr Stanislaus Pang and Fr Paul Yeo)

Church of Our Lady Star of the Sea
10 Yishun Street 22
Singapore 768579
Republic of Singapore.

Tel: +65 6257 4229
Fax: +65 6756 6632
Email:
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