21 April, 2015 AsiaNews.it Twitter AsiaNews.it Facebook            

Help AsiaNews | About us | P.I.M.E. | | RssNewsletter | Mobile






mediazioni e arbitrati, risoluzione alternativa delle controversie e servizi di mediazione e arbitrato
e-mail this to a friend printable version


» 05/24/2012
CHINA - VATICAN
Thousands of pilgrims reach Sheshan on pope's Day of Prayer
by Jian Mei
Fr Thaddeus Ma Daqin, vicar general of the Diocese of Shanghai, and 40 priests celebrated Mass. A large number of plainclothes police monitored worshippers from other dioceses during the pilgrimage month. In Hebei, an underground priest and seminarian are arrested. Mgr Paul Li Yi, bishop of Luan (Changzhi, Shanxi) dies.

Sheshan (AsiaNews) - Thousands of pilgrims from Shanghai and across the country have gathered to pray at the Our Lady of Sheshan Basilica today, 24 May, feast day of Mary Help of Christians, anniversary of the Day of Prayer for the Church in China set aside by Pope Benedict XVI in 2007, a day that also marks the feast day of the national Marian shrine.

Amid a drizzle, at half-past 8, Fr Thaddeus Ma Daqin, vicar general of Shanghai, led the crowd of Catholics in a procession from the Mid-hill Church, carrying the Statue of the Blessed Mother, up to the hilltop basilica.

Once at the hilltop church, Father Ma and almost 40 priests celebrated the Eucharist. Sheshan novices sang during the Mass. There were more than 3,000 faithful inside the basilica for the Mass.

In his homily, Father Ma explained the 'Prayer to Our Lady of Sheshan' written by Pope Benedict XVI for this particular day, Joseph, a Shanghai Catholic, told AsiaNews.

He also called the participating faithful to give reverence to our Blessed Mother and to worship Jesus Christ. "Father Ma's warm and emotional homily moved the faithful at the scene," Joseph said.

It rained throughout the Mass, but the hot and humid weather did not deter the pilgrims. "Instead, they prayed zealously and fervently in the Mass," he said.

In the past, Our Lady of Sheshan shrine used to draw up to 200,000 pilgrims on the feast day, from all over China.

Since 2008, a year after the pope set aside that day as a Day of Prayer for the Church in China, the government has not allowed pilgrims from any diocese, except that of Shanghai, to visit the shrine in Sheshan.

For this reason, many dioceses mark the feast day in shrines closer to hope with Masses, Eucharistic adorations and vigils.

This year, the feast day saw a new church consecrated in Shanxi province.

Fr John, a priest from the open Church in Hebei province, told AsiaNews that he led a pilgrimage to Sheshan earlier this month. He found the security was very tight, as many plainclothes police were monitoring the pilgrimage site.

He said he prayed for the fervency of the faithful and unity in his diocese.

Similarly, several priests from various dioceses shared the same prayer intention.

Some underground priests told AsiaNews that they could not have big celebrations as security was tight, but they did remind their parishioners to pray for the suffering Church in China and for harmony in their respective dioceses.

"I especially prayed for the all the bishops and pastors in China, especially those who are under detention. May the Lord strengthen their faith. We feel lonely in this struggle for the freedom of faith," Fr Peter, an underground priest, noted.

Last week, a priest and a seminarian from the underground community in Baoding were taken into custody by police and taken to an unknown place.

They are likely to undergo sessions of political indoctrination and brain washing to get them to join the Chinese Patriotic Catholic Association, whose goal is to control Catholics and set up a Church independent of the pope.

Bishop Li Yi of Lu'an (Changzhi, Shanxi), 89, died this afternoon, on the special Day of Prayer for China. Ordained in 1949, he was consecrated as coadjutor of Changzhi in 1998.


e-mail this to a friend printable version

See also
04/24/2008 CHINA
New restrictions and controls on pilgrims to Sheshan shrine
05/20/2010 HONG KONG – CHINA – VATICAN
You should be at the Marian shrine of Sheshan, Pope tells Card Zen
by Annie Lam
05/22/2008 CHINA – VATICAN
In China the Church is getting ready for the World Day of Prayer in union with the Pope
by Bernardo Cervellera
05/22/2012 CHINA - VATICAN
Tourists, not pilgrims, welcome in Sheshan
by Bernardo Cervellera
05/25/2009 CHINA – VATICAN
The day of Prayer for the Church in China under control. Pope’s Letter is blocked

Editor's choices
VATICAN
Pope remembers and prays for "latest tragedy" of migrants, "our brothers and sisters" who "are seeking happiness"At the Regina Caeli, Pope Francis says he is praying for the hundreds of victims in a sinking off the coast of Libya. An appeal to the international community to "act decisively and promptly." "Every baptized person is called to witness in word and deed, that Jesus is risen, He is alive and present in our midst." The Christian message "is not a theory, an ideology or a complex system of precepts and prohibitions, or moralism, but a message of salvation, a concrete event, even a person: the Risen Christ, the living and only Savior of all" . The Pope will be in Turin on June 21 to honor the Shroud, the exposition of which begins today.
SAUDI ARABIA – YEMEN
Saudi war in Yemen masks widening domestic tensions
by Afshin ShahiSaudi Arabia is using the conflict in Yemen to control domestic problems, especially social inequalities and religious sectarianism. However, whilst the royal family flaunts its wealth, some 20 per cent of the population lives in poverty. Many disgruntled young Saudis end up becoming "foreign fighters" for the Islamic state (IS). Some 15 per cent of the Saudi population is Shia, under the heavy thumb of the Sunni-dominated state. Afshin Shahi, director of the Centre for the Study of Political Islam and lecturer in International Relations and Middle East Politics at University of Bradford, provides the following lucid analysis.
VATICAN
Pope: on the persecution of Christians, the international community should "not stand by mute and inactive” and “look away”For the sixth time in a week, Pope Francis mentioned the martyrdom of Christians in today’s Regina Caeli (the Marian prayer at Easter), slamming the indifference of the international community towards this "alarming failure to protect basic human rights.” Today’s martyrs "are many, and we can say that they are more numerous than in the first centuries." In addition, “Faith in the resurrection of Jesus and the hope He has brought to us is the most beautiful gift that a Christian can and must offer his brothers and sisters. To one and all, therefore, do not tire of repeating: Christ is Risen!”

Dossier

by Giulio Aleni / (a cura di) Gianni Criveller
pp. 176
Copyright © 2003 AsiaNews C.F. 00889190153 All rights reserved. Content on this site is made available for personal, non-commercial use only. You may not reproduce, republish, sell or otherwise distribute the content or any modified or altered versions of it without the express written permission of the editor. Photos on AsiaNews.it are largely taken from the internet and thus considered to be in the public domain. Anyone contrary to their publication need only contact the editorial office which will immediately proceed to remove the photos.