island has lone priest
BY FR. 1. S. McGRATH
WHILE the battle for the (A shore islands held by Chinese Nationalists makes world headlines, a lone priest is ministering to the people on Quemoy—the largest of the islands involved, a few miles from the Red-held port of Amoy.
As the fall of the small island ' of Yikiangshan to the Chinese Communists raises grave questions regarding the future of these islands, Fr. Joseph Druetto, o Franciscan carries on his work within range of CommuniSt gunfire.
Fr. Dructto is a tough, bearded Frenchman, horn in Marseilles 46 years ago. In 1931 he went to Hunan and stayed with his people all during the Chinese-Japanese war, hiding in the hills.
In 1951 he was arrested by the Chinese Reds. kept in jail for eight months and then deported, Now he is caring for the Catholic people. for soldiers and their dependents on Quemoy.
The people here, ever thinking of freeing the Chinese mainland from Communist control. consider the off-shore islands as stepping stones for an invasion of the continent. Stirred by the heroic stand of the defenders of Yikiangshan. they are angered and depressed by talk about a possible evacuation of these islands.