China‘s state-controlled Catholic Church ordained a new bishop Sunday (4/30/06) in opposition to the Vatican s desires. This is another chapter in the dying communists States desire to control and strangle independent religion. They have created a State controlled Catholic Church where the clergy are under the thumb of the State. This mirrors their tactics with the Protestant Church . Read between the lines and you will be amused and outraged at the ham-fisted techniques of the Chinese govt.
China s unwillingness to respect the Catholic churchs responsibility to select its bishops shows the governments inability to respect religious freedom.
China Catholic Church Ordains Bishop Over Vatican Objections
BEIJING (AP) China’s state-sanctioned Roman Catholic Church ordained a new bishop Sunday, rejecting the Vatican’s request to delay the appointment and threatening efforts to restore official ties between the sides after five decades.
China ‘s Foreign Ministry defended the official church’s right to ordain bishops without Vatican input and called the Holy See’s criticism of such appointments “groundless.” “The recent ordination of bishops at some diocese have been unanimously well-received by church members and priests,” the Foreign Ministry said in a faxed statement. “The criticism toward the Chinese side by the Vatican is groundless.”
AsiaNews, a Vatican-linked news agency, has reported that the Vatican opposed Ma because he does not have enough pastoral experience and he is too close to leaders of the official Chinese church.
In Hong Kong on Sunday, Vatican-appointed Cardinal Joseph Zen told reporters the Vatican has yet to make a final assessment of Ma and wanted China to hold off on his appointment until Rome could make a decision.
“The Vatican has said that the ordination should be suspended for now but not canceled,” Zen said.
But Liu Bainian, vice chairman of the Chinese Patriotic Catholic Association, said that Ma’s ordination should not involve the Vatican . “The Vatican and China don’t have diplomatic relations so this (appointing Ma) is China ‘s sovereign authority,” Liu told ATV. “The Vatican didn’t oppose this so we should keep moving forward.”
China s Foreign Ministry, called on the Vatican to respect’s the state-sanctioned church’s authority. “We hope the Vatican can respect the will of the Chinese church and the vast numbers of its priests and church members so as to create a good atmosphere for the improvement of Sino-Vatican ties,” the statement said.
Hong Kong, a former British colony now ruled by China , still enjoys religious freedom and the clergy obey the Vatican . But Catholics in the mainland are only allowed to worship at churches run by the Chinese Patriotic Catholic Association. However, millions of worshippers belong to underground churches loyal to the Vatican . Those who meet in such churches are frequently harassed, fined and sometimes sent to labor camps.