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    » 11/30/2006, 00.00

    CHINA – VATICAN

    Episcopal ordination in Xuzhou is "indecent and astounding", says Card Zen



    The bishop of Hong Kong stresses the "astounding" methods by the Patriotic Association and the Religious Affairs Bureau in the unlawful Episcopal ordination. It make China look ridiculous, offends the faithful and damages the interests of the country. He appeals to the central government to start meaningful talks with the Holy See.

    Rome (AsiaNews) – Today's illegitimate ordination in Xuzhou was done with "indecent methods, almost unimaginable". It is "astounding because no one could expect such a thing", Card Joseph Zen Ze-kiun, bishop of Hong Kong, told AsiaNews speaking about the illegitimate Episcopal ordination of Fr Wang Renlei.

    In order to pull off their deed, the Chinese Catholic Patriotic Association and the Religious Affairs Bureau abducted two bishops, Mgr Li Liangui of Cangzhou (Xianxian) and Mgr Peter Feng Xinmao, so that they could provide some kind of official legitimacy to the ceremony.

    For Cardinal Zen, the decision is astounding because no one would expect such a thing. "It is hard to understand how there can be people who obstinately work for destruction. What happened this time is even more serious than what happened [. . .] at the end of April" which is "punishable with sanctions fixed in Church law".

    The ordination of Fr Joseph Ma Yinglin and Fr Joseph Liu Xinhong, on April 28 and May 3 respectively, were punished with excommunication latae sententiae. In a statement by the Vatican Press Office, they were defined as "a grave violation of religious freedom", that cause the Pope "profound sorrow".

    The prelate told AsiaNews that "it would seem that the ordination were planned disobeying the orders of the government. Now we cannot expect Beijing to slam the ceremony; at the same time we cannot put all the blame on the small local Church locale, led by a 94-year-old bishop".

    Cardinal Zen, who is on his way to Vietnam, has also made an official statement in which he stressed that what has happened is damaging the real interest of the country. In it he calls on China's leaders, "[b]ased on the paramount principle of harmony, [. . .] to make a firm decision to start a substantial dialogue with the Holy See".

    Here is the cardinal's full statement:

    "It is hard to understand how there can be people who obstinately work for destruction. Under the cloak of serving the Church, they work to destroy her unity. The illegitimate ordination of a bishop in Xuzhou on 30th November made it more evident how those with vested interests are terribly afraid that the Church one day may operate normally and freely according to her Constitution.

    "Organisms outside the Church continue to use the power given by the State to support the renegade believers and damage the true good of the Country.

    "What happened this time is even more serious than what happened between the end of April and the beginning of May, because:

    1)      at that time, the Holy See made it clear once more that such illegitimate ordinations are a very serious offence, punishable with sanctions fixed in Church law;

    2)      the central Government, after those facts, invited a delegation from the Holy See to Beijing and promised not to promote such ordinations any more;

    3)      in order to achieve their purpose, the methods they used this time are not only threat, allurement, and deceit, but also forceful abduction and kidnapping!

    "They tried to put the responsibility on the local church, a 94-year-old bishop! That makes them simply ridiculous.

    "Out of love for our Country and for our Church, we appeal to our highest leaders: please, do not allow any more people who disregard the true good of the Country, to go on damaging our Church, hurting the feelings of innumerable believers, and causing our Country to become the laughing-stock in the human family of the world.

    "Based on the paramount principle of harmony, we beg you to make a firm decision to start a substantial dialogue with the Holy See, to find a way acceptable to both, the State and the Holy See, so that the Church in our Country may operate normally and the faithful may be happy to offer themselves and contribute to the real good of our Country."

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    See also

    02/12/2006 VATICAN - CHINA
    Holy See: Ordination caused pope's sorrow and laceration of ecclesial community

    The Vatican press office has issued an official statement about the illegitimate ordination of Wang Renlei that took place on 30 November.



    09/05/2006 VATICAN - CHINA
    Card. Zen: Chinese government is mistaken; all in China want to be led by pope

    When a bishop is not chosen by the Holy See, priests usually refuse to concelebrate with him and believers keep their distance.



    16/09/2013 HONG KONG
    Hong Kong , the Church appeals to the UN: "An end to religious repression in China"
    The Justice and Peace Commission of the Diocese has sent a document to the Committee which is set to assess Beijing’s progress in the area of religious freedom . The text highlights distortions of the truth and egregious violations, illicit episcopal ordinations as well as the torture and disappearance of clergy faithful to the Pope. A call on China to "stop these activities directed against its own people."

    29/04/2006 CHINA – HONG KONG - VATICAN
    Card. Zen: "Suspend ordination of Kunming bishop"

    In a fax sent this morning to officials of the diocese in Yunan, the cardinal "requested the ordaining bishop and co-ordaining bishops to suspend the episcopal ordination of Fr Ma Yinglin, because he has not received approval from the Holy See."



    30/11/2006 CHINA – VATICAN
    Bishop escapes from abductors to avoid participating in an ordination not allowed by the Holy See
    Four other bishops take part in the ordination, but very few faithful and priest are present attend the ceremony.



    Editor's choices

    CHINA – VATICAN
    Global Times: the pope should accept the independence of the Chinese Church



    After 24 hours of silence, China’s media today published excerpts, comments and editorials about Pope Francis’ interview with Asia Times. Although the pope did not address religious issues or Church problems, many saw the interview as an attempt to improve diplomatic relations between China and the Vatican, and advised Francis to accept Mao Zedong’s "three principles of independence" (theology, administration, jurisdiction), which would leave the power to appoint bishops in the hands of the Party. The People's Daily’s Global Times publishes an editorial on the issue.


    INDIA – PHILIPPINES
    Archbishop of Guwahati: In Asia religion is not dying, the faithful take strength from the Eucharist



    Mgr Menamparampil is among the speakers at the International Eucharistic Congress in Cebu, Philippines. He was also a conflict mediator between various ethnic groups. He told AsiaNews about the value of the Congress for the Catholic Church in Asia and how people can bear witness the Gospel today, even amid tensions and violence of those who "hate us." "with the same pain in our hearts that we descend to our depths during a Eucharistic adoration."


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