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    » 03/21/2012, 00.00

    CHINA

    Tomb of underground priest destroyed: "Beijing even afraid of the dead"

    Wang Zhicheng

    The police smashed a tombstone because the engraving said the deceased was a "father". But he "had no right" to the title because was not recognized by the government. only relatives and a few faithful of the village allowed at funeral ceremony and cemetery.

    Beijing (AsiaNews / UCAN) - "Beijing is even afraid of the dead" is the comment of a faithful from Hebei to AsiaNews reacting to reports that police destroyed the tombstone of an underground priest.

    On March 19 a group of police smashed with a sledgehammer the tombstone of Fr. Joseph Shi Liming, 39, educator in the clandestine seminary of Baoding (Hebei), who died in a car accident along with six seminarians (see 02/01/2012 On line mourning for a priest and six seminarians who died in an accident in Hebei).

     

    On the 19 the ceremony marking "100 days" since his death was to have been held. Relatives and faithful had planned to visit the Damaquan cemetery (Zhaoxian County) and inscribe the words "tomb of Fr. Shi Liming" on the tombstone. The police, who had issued threats against the faithful,  smashed the tombstone, the reason being, Fr. Shi was not recognized as a priest by the government, and so "had no right" to writing that designated him a "father".

    Security forces have also forbidden to the faithful from other neighboring counties to participate in the ceremony. Only close relatives and some Catholics in the village were given permission to enter the cemetery.

     

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    See also

    18/09/2012 CHINA
    Hubei, a church burned. Catholics call for justice
    The church - which can hold 100 people - had been rebuilt after its destruction under Mao. Suspicions point to construction companies who want to seize the village land. Local authorities indifferent to complaints.

    10/08/2013 CHINA
    Hebei underground Catholic priest arrested
    A group of law enforcement officers stopped Fr. Song Wanjun of the clergy of Xiwanzi, while driving his car at 4 in the morning. Place of detention unknown. The Northern Province, stronghold of Catholic China, still targeted by the authorities.

    02/01/2012 CHINA
    On line mourning for a priest and six seminarians who died in an accident in Hebei
    Tianzhujiao zai xian website proposes prayer to honour the dead and support for their families. A young seminarian has survived, but his condition is still very serious.

    18/07/2014 CHINA - VATICAN
    Beijing, seminarians desert graduation ceremony: We will not celebrate Mass with illegitimate bishops
    The rector of the seminary is the illegitimate bishop Joseph Ma Yinglin: Students refuse to concelebrate with him and reject Msgr. Fang Xingyao, who has participated in several illegal episcopal ordinations. The directors close the year without awarding diplomas and send students home: rumors of some courses being "suspended" in September. The precedent of 2000, when 130 young students chose fidelity to the Pope over compromise with the government.

    19/12/2005 CHINA
    The priests of Taiyuan call for justice after attack

    In a message received by AsiaNews, priests tell of violence, police delays, and unrestrained aggressors and ask for authorities to intervene.





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