Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Holy See struggles with China over bishops

Catholic leaders worry about 'catastrophic schism'

Students hit the books in Shanghai's Sheshan regional seminary in 2007. (CNS / Nancy Wiechec)

Diplomatic contact between the Vatican and the People's Republic of China remains cool. The B.C. Catholic columnist Msgr. Pedro Lopez-Gallo explains why a recent flashpoint has been the Chinese government's appointment of bishops without the Holy See's approval.

Who will prevail? While the Patriotic Church has about 3 million adherents, the underground Church which is united with Rome still numbers 12 million.

The drama intensified when newly installed Auxiliary Bishop Thaddeus Ma Daqin of Shanghai stunned his congregation by announcing, without delay, his resignation from the Chinese Patriotic Association.

Catholic leaders who have spent years fostering a detente between Rome and Beijing worry about the possibility of a catastrophic schism, something avoided during the darkest days of the Communist Party's war on religion.
Read the full article here. 

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