04/07/2017, 19.09
HONG KONG
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Hong Kong’s chief executive-elect meets Card Tong

by Paul Wang

After her faux pas in proposing a Religious Affairs Unit, Lam meets Hong Kong’s bishop, perhaps to mend fences. During the talk, she noted that she had a Catholic education at a school whose motto is ‘Live by the truth in love’. Bishop Coadjutor Bishop Michael Young and Vicar General Father Dominic Chan were also present.

Hong Kong (AsiaNews) – Two weeks after her election, Hong Kong’s Chief Executive-elect, Carrie Lam, met today with Card John Tong, bishop of Hong Kong, at the Catholic Diocese Centre in Caine Road, Central (pictured 1).

Elected by the 1200-member Election Committee with 777 votes, the Beijing-backed Lam is not very popular among ordinary Hong Kongers, including Catholics. For many, she was Beijing’s candidate.

Feeling towards her were not improved when, during the campaign, she proposed setting up a Hong Kong Religious Affairs Unit like the one on the mainland. After taking a lot of flak from Hong Kong’s Catholics and Protestants, she dropped the idea.

During the election campaign, Card Tong himself came out against her. However, today's visit seems to have melted the ice between her and the Catholic Church.

The cardinal congratulated Ms Lam on her victory, and wished her all the best in serving China and Hong Kong after she takes office on 1st July.

In her response, Ms Lam thanked Card Tong for his support and encouragement, adding that she has always abided by the Church’s teachings and guidance. She also noted that she was educated at a Catholic school and has always followed its motto, ‘Live by the truth in love’.

As chief executive, she said her administration would safeguard Hong Kong's core values, including freedom of religious belief, and keep in close contact with the various religious bodies to fully support and assist in their further development.

Prior to the visit, Card Tong sent Ms Lam a letter soon after her election expressing hope that as the new chief executive, she would try to “achieve the goal of universal suffrage” for her office, whilst protecting complete religious freedom and pluralism in the special administrative region.

The Coadjutor Bishop of Hong Kong Rev Michael Yeung and the Vicar General Rev Dominic Chan were also present at the meeting (pictured 2).

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