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ICC Note: As the Holy See and China are expected to sign a deal over appointment of bishops, many Chinese Catholics feel like their voices have not been heard – they are being kept totally in the dark about what is being discussed. Some feel betrayed given the ongoing crackdown on Christianity done by Beijing.

09/21/2018 China (Asia News) –In the China-Vatican dialogue which, according to many different rumors, should reach an agreement by the end of September, the voice of the Chinese Church is missing. And if the Vatican also represents the Chinese Church, why are Chinese Catholics kept in the dark and nothing is communicated to them about what is being discussed? These are some perplexities expressed by a Chinese priest on his blog. Another perplexity expressed by Shanren Shenfu (the name of the priest-blogger) is on the “ecclesial” character of the agreement, which instead seems to have only political connotations. His friends, who sent us this text, fear for his safety. The priest points out that, knowing nothing about this agreement, “we do not really know whether we must rejoice or if we must expect a heavier cross”. However, he remains amazed that the possible signature of the agreement takes place while completely ignoring “the reality of the faith in China, all kinds of persecution and difficulties that are taking place”. With great diligence, the internet police immediately took down his reflection, which we publish in full below.

Legal? Really?

By the end of September 2018, the Vatican delegation will be in Beijing to conduct the last round of talks between Beijing and the Holy See. If both sides have no disputes, then they will sign the Agreement.

In his article “Global Times: Sino-Vatican agreement on bishops approaches”, Gianni Valente cited the Global Times as saying: “The dialogue takes place “on the religious level”, leaving out the political dimensions including the establishment of diplomatic ties between Beijing and the Vatican. In the same article he also speaks of the many “false alarms” launched by lobbyists and agents against the Sino-Vatican agreement.” This is from the official English version of the Global Times, which is Chinese communist media, so, it seems to be credible!

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For interviews with Gina Goh, ICC’s Regional Manager, please contact Olivia Miller, Communications Coordinator: press@persecution.org