In Memoriam
Requiscat In Pace: Fr. Francis Xavier Wang Chu Hua, S.J.

Father Francis X. Wang, S.J., 90, died April 23, 2011 in Regis Infirmary, Sacred Heart Jesuit Center, Los Gatos. He was a Jesuit for 70 years, an ordained priest for 59 years, and a prisoner for the faith for 33 years. He was a member of the China Province.

Francis was born in Shanghai on March 3, 1921. His mother was Buddhist, died when Francis was ten. His father, who became a Catholic convert, was known for building a school for the very poor in his home village. His father sent him to be educated by the Jesuits and, although being at first something of a rebel against religion, Francis received baptism in 1938. He entered the Jesuit novitiate at Zikawei on August 30, 1941. After pursuing philosophy studies in Beijing and theology studies in Shanghai, he was ordained a priest in Shanghai on April 16, 1952 by Ignatius Kung Pinmei, Archbishop of Shanghai. The Communists put Francis, along with the other Chinese Jesuits, under house arrest in the Zikawei theologate, where he completed his theology and tertianship.

He was able to do some apostolic work among students at St. Ignatius Church, Shanghai, before being arrested by the Communist authorities on May 20, 1954. Accused of being a counter-revolutionary and for working with the Legion of Mary, he was sentenced to twelve years imprisonment. One account indicates that he shared a 30' x 40' cell with 50-60 others. The prisoners slept side-by-side and could not turn over without disturbing all the others. In 1965 he was transferred from the prison in Shanghai to a labor camp in Qinghai Province. Upon completion of his sentence in 1966, he remained in forced labor at the Qinghai Reform Camp for refusing to denounce his Catholic faith. He worked at a factory in Xining producing tools and was able to perform clandestine ministry to the approximately 500 Catholics in the village in which he was living.

Re-arrested in November 1981 for his apostolic work, he was sentenced to six more years in the labor camp. The years in a harsh climate with poor rations took its toll on his health and he contracted tuberculosis. He was given a reduced workload and more time to rest, but not given any other care. Upon his release on November 18, 1987, he resumed his ministry.

In 1988, through the work of his sister, Mary, Francis was able to get a visa to come to the United States for health care. Before he left China, he made his long-delayed final profession in Shanghai on November 4, 1988. In a Mass in the home of Fr. George Wong's brother, Fr. Joseph Pittau received Francis' vows. He arrived in Portland, Oregon, via Hong Kong on November 24, 1988. A year later he relocated to Berkeley and took a refresher course in theology. In 1991, he took up residence at Sacred Heart Jesuit Center, Los Gatos, where he ministered to the Chinese community in the San Jose area for as long as his health permitted. In retirement he received a steady stream of visits from his former parishioners. May he rest in peace.

Funeral Services:
Thursday, April 28
St. Clare Parish
725 Washington Street
Santa Clara, CA 95050

Viewing and Rosary: 9:00 a.m.

Mass of Christian Burial: 10:00 a.m.

Committal:
following Mass of Christian Burial
Santa Clara Mission Cemetery
490 Lincoln Street
Santa Clara, CA 95050

Reception at St. Clare Parish Hall following burial.

Notes of condolence may be sent to:
Mary Wang (sister)
100 Chalet Woods Circle
Campbell, CA 95008

 

In Christ's Peace,
Alfred Naucke, S.J.
Socius

To make a gift in memory of Fr. Francis X. Wang, S.J., please visit https://www.jesuitscalifornia.org/SSLPage.aspx?pid=912





Recent News

February 13, 2020 — He became president in 1997.

February 3, 2020 — Father Paul J. Goda, SJ, emeritus professor of law at Santa Clara University, died January 29, 2020 at Sacred Heart Jesuit Center, Los Gatos at the age of 88.

February 3, 2020 — Father Andrew B. Garcia, SJ, professed Final Vows as a full member of the Society of Jesus on the Feast of the Presentation of the Lord at the 9:30 AM Mass at Most Holy Trinity Parish, San Jose, California.

January 30, 2020 — Cristo Rey San José Jesuit High School and Loyola High School of Los Angeles recently received historic gifts.

January 28, 2020 — Father Bernard (Barney) Coughlin, SJ, the former long-serving president of Gonzaga University, died today at the age of 97 at Sacred Heart Jesuit Center in Los Gatos, California.

January 28, 2020 — Jesuits West Province is pleased to announce that two veteran fundraisers are joining the Province staff.

January 24, 2020 — When Fr. Trung Pham, SJ, was at Santa Clara University working on his Licentiate in Sacred Theology, his thesis was titled “Extreme Beauty.”

view all news

Search news

Publications

Jesuits West Magazine - Fall 2019

Jesuits West Magazine - Spring 2019

Mission Magazine - Fall 2018


Companions
Fall, 2019

Companions
Summer, 2019

Companions
Fall, 2018


Jesuit Retreat Center of Los Altos
The Jesuit Retreat Center of Los Altos has offered prayerful solitude and inspiring vistas to those seeking spiritual rejuvenation since 1925.