The Fate of the Davao Penal Colony #502 "Branch" of the LDS Church, 1944

The Fate of the Davao Penal Colony #502 "Branch" of the LDS Church, 1944
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The Fate of the Davao Penal Colony #502 "Branch" of the LDS Church, 1944

Author David L. Clark Author Bart J. Kowallis

On September 7, 1944, 668 American POWs were killed when the unmarked Japanese ship in which they were being transported was hit by friendly fire. Among those POWs were several members of an unofficial LDS "branch" that had formed in a penal colony near Davao, on the island of Mindanao in the Philippines. The branch of POWs had contraband scriptures and a hymnbook and met together weekly. This article tells as much of their story as has come to light: who they were, their service, and their capture. The article ends with a discussion of the theological implications of their deaths.