Print Version    Email to Friend
Dicey time for religion in China

HONG KONG (SE): “Everybody is out there… trying to reify that part of life which is not filled by bread alone, by commerce alone,” Orville Schell, the director of the Asia Society Centre on relations between the United States of America and China, said during a panel discussion on religion in China held at the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies at Stanford University on May 1.
 

More from this section






Print Version    Email to Friend
Approach Beijing with caution Vatican warned

OTTAWA (SE): “We should be under no illusion that as China engages more and more with the political, economic and social frameworks of the world, that that is having any impact on their human rights record,” the former ambassador for religious freedom from Canada, Andrew Bennett, said in warning the Catholic Church that in its negotiations with China it should have no illusions in approaching Beijing.

More from this section






Print Version    Email to Friend
Lent with an interreligious flavour

ZHENGZHOU (SE): Kuan Yan, a Buddhist monk, set out from China on a pilgrimage to India with the intention of expressing his great personal devotion to Mother Teresa of Kolkata.

More from this section






Print Version    Email to Friend
One of first secretly ordained bishops dies

HONG KONG (UCAN): Bishop Casimir Wang Milu, from Tianshui in the northwest of China, suffered a stroke and later contracted pneumonia in hospital where he died on February 14 at the age of 74.

The bishop from the unofficial community of the Church was not recognised by the Chinese government. He had been hospitalised since early January, but his condition continued to deteriorate. His funeral took place on February 18.

More from this section






Print Version    Email to Friend
Downgraded bishop takes back his old jobs

SHANGHAI (UCAN): Bishop Thaddeus Ma Daqin, who has been under house arrest in Sheshen Seminary near Shanghai since he called the bluff of the government at his ordination in July 2012, has taken up two jobs in the same Chinese Catholic Patriotic Association that he quit.

Bishop Ma accepted the two positions as a member of the standing committee in the Patriotic Association of Shanghai at a joint meeting of the association and the Church Affairs Commission of Shanghai on January 20.

More from this section






Print Version    Email to Friend
Mixing sand with rice

HONG KONG (UCAN): In recent years, whenever a government-backed bishop not approved by the Vatican appears at an episcopal ordination along with Vatican-approved bishops, Chinese Catholics mock it with the saying “mixing sand with rice.”

A priest writing under the name of Father Peter Peng, who describes himself as an observer in northern China, said that the first time he heard the phrase was from the late Father Yan Wenda in 1984.

More from this section






Print Version    Email to Friend
A reminder of who is in charge

HONG KONG (SE): The relatively peaceful and unhindered ordination of Bishop Peter Ding Lingbin in Changzhi, Shanxi province, on November 10, led to much hype over the current round of meetings between the Vatican and Beijing in promoting relations between the Church in China and the government.

More from this section






Print Version    Email to Friend
A disobedience of faith

HONG KONG (SE): A maverick priest from the unofficial Church community in Zhengding in Hebei, Father Paul Dong Guanhua (see page 12), claims that in engineering his own ordination as a bishop he is modelling himself on Bishop Joseph Fan Xueyan, the first bishop in China to ordain another clandestinely without a specific mandate from the Vatican (1981).

More from this section






Print Version    Email to Friend
Catholic demographics in China prompt new questions

HONG KONG (SE): In the 1980s and 1990s the Church in China had arguably the fastest growing membership on any country in the world, outstripping on a percentage basis even the monumental growth being experienced on the African continent.

However, Anthony Lam Sui-ki, from the Holy Spirit Study Centre in Hong Kong, says that this growth has plateaued in recent years and that the now, the Church is struggling to replace its natural attrition, apart from leakage to various sects and quasi-religious groups.

More from this section






Print Version    Email to Friend
Official Church facing authenticity crisis

HONG KONG (UCAN): St. Joseph’s Church in Beijing towers over busy Wangfujing Street, not far from Tiananmen Square. 

On an uncharacteristically humid afternoon in July this year, the courtyard is abandoned, save for three men sleeping on benches.

The church doors are shuttered, but not locked. Outside the main gate, another four homeless people take refuge from the pounding sun and suffocatingly humid air. But inside, there’s not a soul.

More from this section