St. John the Baptist, Sungai Siput

st John the Baptist

Our History

In 1912, Fr. John Baptist Coppin acquired a piece of land and built a wooden chapel. He appointed a permanent catechist. In 1929, Fr. Francois bought the piece of land which forms the present church grounds at a cost of $3,000. Fr. John Baptist Coppin, the parish priest of St. Michael’s Church, Ipoh, built the Parish Church. There was no resident priest, so the priests from St. Michael’s Ipoh looked after the Chinese and the priests from Our Lady of Lourdes Church looked after the Indians in Sungai Siput. Visiting priests to Sungai Siput were Fr. Lawrence and Fr. Rene Chineau. The catechist was Mr. Wong Kon Hoi. In 1950, Mr. Yap took over as Catechist until 1953 when he was transferred to Teluk Intan. There was no catechist until 1956. The first resident priest, Fr. Jean Caset, MEP (1952 – 1961), who had been expelled from China was available to work among the community of “hakka speaking” Chinese. He opened a kindergarten, had the church repaired and extended in 1960. As he did in China, he equipped a reading room with books in Chinese where everyone was welcome. It was his way of contacting non-Christians.

Fr. Jean Caset built the parachial house and extended the back portion of the church. Fr. Peter Chiang took his place when he went on leave. He asked for donations to build the kindergarten classrooms. Fr. Peter Chiang renovated the parochial house: he closed up the open hall below the parochial house and made an office, a meeting room and dining room. He fenced up the whole compound. He visited the parishioners frequently. Every night he gave them instructions on Sacraments. Due to visa problems, Fr. Peter Chiang left for Brunei.

From 1970 to 1975, there was no resident priest, however the priests who came were Fr. John Hiong (from Kuala Kangsar) and Fr. Ciatti from Ipoh. They came to celebrate Masses on Sundays. From the year 1974, Fr. George Lee (1974 – 1985) who residing in Sungai Siput, was interested in Orang Asli Apostolate. He was just transferred from Kampar where there was an important group of Orang Asli. He was given the title ‘Bapa Orang Asli’. In the 1980s, in the Perak State alone, there were eight out-stations including two Mass centers.

The mission work among them consisted not only in proclaiming the Gospel but also in doing welfare work to help them in some of their needs. There were visiting priests from Ipoh (Fr. Peter Pang) and also from Kuala Kangsar (Fr. Maurice Surmon, MEP). When Fr. George Lee left for home, Fr.Maiccal Sinnappan arrived as an administrator. The Grotto was built in 1991. Fr. Edmund Woon and Fr. Marshall from St. Michael’s Church looked after the Sungai Siput Church. Fr. Robin Andrews served as an administrator from 1988 to 2002. All this while, priests from Our Lady of Lourdes, Ipoh were also visiting the Tamil speaking parishioners.

In 2005, Fr. Anthony Pillai was posted as resident parish priest. The dilapidated parochial house was restored making it fit for the parish priest to stay. In 2010, Fr. Micheal Dass succeeded Fr. Anthony as the parish priest.

(Source : Diocese of Penang Golden Jubilee Souvenir Magazine)

Mass Times

Sun : 10.00am Morning Mass
Mon : 6.30 pm Evening Mass (Convent)
Wed : 7.00 pm Evening Mass
Fri : 7.00 pm Evening Mass

Parish Priest


Rev. Michael Dass
Tel (office) : 05-7761654
Tel (mobile) : 012-5713910
email :

Parish Clerk

Parish Clerk
Ms. Fathima
Tel: 05-7761654
Fax: 05-7773687

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