Catholic Church in Xinjiang Has Its Religious Features Forcibly Removed

ICC Note: Authorities in Yining, Xinjiang forcibly removed a Catholic church’s crosses, statues, and bell towers on February 27. A source believes that these features were demolished due to “incompatibility with Sinicization.” The church was only informed a day prior to the demolition.   

03/01/2018 China (UCA News) – A church in northwest China’s Xinjiang region had its crosses, statues, bell towers and other religious features demolished by order of communist authorities.

Using a crane, state-instructed workers removed the exterior religious features from the Catholic church of Yining city in Urumqi Diocese on Feb. 27.

A source told that no reason was given for the action but it is believed to have been carried out because the religious features were “incompatible with sinicization.”

The source said three crosses and two bell towers on the top of Yining Catholic Church were demolished and that all religious symbols, two big statues and any reliefs were removed.

“It was originally said religious features inside the church should been demolished as well but it was suspended without any reasons given,” the source said.

The church received a letter from the authorities the day before informing them the demolition would occur.

The source said he was puzzled by what has happened to the church because of it occurred just before the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference and the National People’s Congress are both held in Beijing on March 3 and 5 respectively and while a Sino-Vatican agreement was supposedly being worked out.


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