24 October 2016
AsiaNews.it Twitter AsiaNews.it Facebook
Geographic areas

  • > Africa
  • > Central Asia
  • > Europe
  • > Middle East
  • > Nord America
  • > North Asia
  • > South Asia
  • > South East Asia
  • > South West Asia
  • > Sud America
  • > East Asia

  • mediazioni e arbitrati, risoluzione alternativa delle controversie e servizi di mediazione e arbitrato

    » 11/24/2010, 00.00


    Holy See condemns illicit episcopal ordination in Chengde

    In a harsh statement, the Vatican expresses the pope’s "deep regret" and denounces "a serious breach of Catholic discipline" and "freedom of religion and conscience." The Beijing government has ignored the demands of the Holy See and let Liu Bainian, vice president of the Patriotic obstruct China - the Holy See dialogue. It reminds the illicit bishop of his excommunication latae sententiae.

    Vatican City (AsiaNews) – We publish the full text of the statement issued by Holy See Press Office on the episcopal ordination of Chengde (Hebei), which took place on 20 November. In this very frank and clear statement, it is claimed that the illicit ordination of Fr Guo Jincai, is a "serious breach of Catholic discipline" and a "serious violation of freedom of religion and conscience", as some bishops have been forced by restrictions and pressures to participate. The gesture has resulted in the pontiff’s "profound regret" and the pain of the Chinese and the universal Church. It accuses China of not being sensitive to the concerns and demands of the Vatican and of handing over management of ecclesial affairs to the layman Liu Bainian, who masterminded the illicit ordination. For the bishops involved (Guo Jincai and ordaining bishop) the risks of their illicit canonical status recalled and doubts expressed about the validity of the ordination.

    With regard to the episcopal ordination of the Reverend Joseph Guo Jincai, which took place last Saturday, November 20, information has been gathered about what happened and it is now possible to state clearly the following.

    1. The Holy Father received the news with deep regret, because the above-mentioned episcopal ordination was conferred without the apostolic mandate and, therefore, constitutes a painful wound upon ecclesial communion and a grave violation of Catholic discipline (cf. Letter of Benedict XVI to the Church in China, 2007, n. 9).

    2. It is known that, in recent days, various Bishops were subjected to pressures and restrictions on their freedom of movement, with the aim of forcing them to participate and confer the episcopal ordination. Such constraints, carried out by Chinese government and security Authorities, constitute a grave violation of freedom of religion and conscience. The Holy See intends to carry out a detailed evaluation of what has happened, including consideration of the aspect of validity and the canonical position of the Bishops involved.

    3. In any case, this has painful repercussions, in the first case, for the Reverend Joseph Guo Jincai who, because of this episcopal ordination, finds himself in a most serious canonical condition before the Church in China and the universal Church, exposing himself also to the severe sanctions envisaged, in particular, by canon 1382 of the Code of Canon Law.

    4. This ordination not only does not contribute to the good of the Catholics of Chengde, but places them in a very delicate and difficult condition, also from the canonical point of view, and humiliates them, because the Chinese civil Authorities wish to impose on them a Pastor who is not in full communion, either with the Holy Father or with the other Bishops throughout the world.

    5. Several times, during this current year, the Holy See has communicated clearly to the Chinese Authorities its opposition to the episcopal ordination of the Reverend Joseph Guo Jincai. In spite of this, the said Authorities decided to proceed unilaterally, to the detriment of the atmosphere of respect that had been created with great effort with the Holy See and with the Catholic Church through the recent episcopal ordinations. This claim to place themselves above the Bishops and to guide the life of the ecclesial community does not correspond to Catholic doctrine; it offends the Holy Father, the Church in China and the universal Church, and further complicates the present pastoral difficulties.

    6. Pope Benedict XVI, in the above-mentioned Letter of 2007, expressed the Holy See’s willingness to engage in a respectful and constructive dialogue with the Authorities of the People’s Republic of China, with the aim of overcoming the difficulties and normalizing relations (n. 4). In reaffirming this willingness, the Holy See notes with regret that the Authorities allow the leadership of the Chinese Catholic Patriotic Association, under the influence of Mr. Liu Bainian, to adopt attitudes that gravely damage the Catholic Church and hamper the aforesaid dialogue.

    7. The Catholics of the entire world are following with particular attention the troubled journey of the Church in China: the spiritual solidarity with which they accompany the vicissitudes of their Chinese brothers and sisters becomes a fervent prayer to the Lord of history, so that He may be close to them, increase their hope and fortitude, and give them consolation in moments of trial.

    24 November 2010.

    e-mail this to a friend Printable version

    See also

    20/11/2010 CHINA-VATICAN
    Chengde, eight bishops in communion with Pope participate in illicit ordination
    The ceremony took place despite the strong protest of the Holy See. There had been no illegal ordinations since 2006. Among the eight bishops who participated there is also Mgr. Francis An Shuxin of Baoding, who last year had emerged from the underground church, causing many conflicts and disputes with the Vatican. The faithful are sad and angry.

    19/11/2010 CHINA - VATICAN
    Chengde: illicit Episcopal ordination, the first in four years
    Vice-President of the Patriotic Association ignores the Vatican veto. Many bishops are under pressure to take part in the ordination. Three prelates were seized. For the faithful of the diocese the new ordination against the wishes of the Holy See "is a time bomb." The new bishop is close to the government, but far from the local and universal Church.

    14/04/2011 VATICAN -CHINA
    Vatican Commission sends message to Chinese Catholics
    The document calls for hope, despite the "evidence" that the faithful are dealing with the illegitimate ordination of Chengde and the 8th National Assembly of Catholic representatives, pointing to the dictates of the Code of Canon Law and the directions of Benedict XVI. The urgent need for the appointment of bishops in vacant dioceses and the importance of formation. Hopes for government openness to dialogue.

    14/07/2011 VATICAN - CHINA
    Few share the Pope’s "pain and concern," for the Church in China
    The statement by the director of the Vatican Press Office on the illicit ordination of Shantou. "An act contrary to the unity of the universal Church." But the Church prays little for China; presidents and secretaries of state are silent on the violations of human rights, the economy trumps everything. But this short-sightedness is preparing the ground for a huge and violent social conflict in China.

    18/11/2010 VATICAN - CHINA
    Holy See against an illicit Episcopal ordination and violence against bishops
    The government preparing for ceremony on Nov. 20 and seizes two bishops to force them to participate. The Vatican denounces "severe violations of religious freedom and conscience." Blackmail in anticipation of the National Assembly of Catholic representatives, a body "incompatible" with Catholic faith, which the bishops should not attend

    Editor's choices

    On “Hong Kong sectors” supposedly "against Francis"

    John Mok Chit Wai

    A scholar at the Chinese University of Hong Kong, who collaborates with AsiaNews, responds to accusations against the agency and people in Hong Kong with respect to criticism of the Vatican’s diplomatic approach towards China. Religious freedom is a fundamental human right and a universal value, whether in China, Russia or the Middle East. Between "Right" and "Left", China defines itself as left, yet it practices state capitalism and unfettered capitalism just as "right-wing governments" do. Gaudium et Spes calls on the faithful to engage in politics against the "arbitrary domination by [. . .] a political party,” like in China.

    The "enemies" of Pope Francis

    Bernardo Cervellera

    The charge made against AsiaNews that we are against the Pope and in favor of Putin, is an opportunity to outline what motivates our commitment to evangelization. And also to ask for greater professionalism from those who write about the Pope. The Pope does not need public defenders. Facilitating dialogue between "conservatives" and "progressives" to realize the Council and concern ourselves with the world so that it encounters Jesus Christ. Christ’s “enemies” were also his "friends."


    AsiaNews monthly magazine (in Italian) is free.


    News feed

    Canale RSScanale RSS 

    Add to Google


    IRAN 2016 Banner

    2003 © All rights reserved - AsiaNews C.F. e P.Iva: 00889190153 - GLACOM®