Life as a priest in Communist China:
Arrested in 1955, Father Xibin “Matthew” Zhang was finally released from the notorious Tilanqiao prison in the autumn of 1978.
A close friend and confidant of then-Bishop Pinmei "Ignatius" Kung, the two had both served Shanghainese Catholics, been arrested the same night, tried side-by-side at the same trial, and served their sentences in the same prison.
After his release, Father Zhang was constantly watched by authorities, the secret police, paid spies and local busybodies in neighborhood associations. He was rearrested, in November 1981, and locked up in Shanghai's Number 1 Detention Center. He was later released.
Six years later, in November 1987, he was arrested yet again. While under arrest, he suffered heart problems and was transferred to Tilanqiao Prison Hospital.
After receiving treatment, he was moved to the Shelter of the Shanghai Archdiocese. Officially described as a nursing home for elderly clergy, the Shelter was, in reality, where priests were held under house arrest.
Father Zhang and the other priests were closely monitored and subsequent reports about them were filed with the Public Security Bureau by Father Luxian Jin’s secretary, whose nickname was “Madame Bishop” because of her very close relationship with Jin, who had been illicitly consecrated the bishop of Shanghai, without papal mandate, by the Chinese Catholic Patriotic Association.
Father Zhang died, on May 30, 1990, forever faithful to Christ, His Church, and to the Pope.
VIVA CRISTO REY! 萬歲耶穌基督國王!