Vatican Beijing Agreement

In an article published in L`Osservatore Romano on the day of the announcement of the extension, it is stated that the “main objective” of the agreement on the appointment of bishops in China “is to support and promote the proclamation of the Gospel in this country and to restore the full and visible unity of the Church.” She added that “the primary motivations” that guide the Holy See in its dialogue with the Chinese authorities “are fundamentally ecclesiological and pastoral,” because the question of the appointment of bishops “is essential for the life of the Church, both locally and universally.” According to the article, this “will gradually ensure both the unity of faith and communion among bishops” and thus serve the Catholic community in China. He pointed out that for the first time since 1958, when the first illegal ordinations took place in China, “all the bishops of China are in communion with the bishop of Rome” and “there will be no more illegitimate ordinations.” The “main objective” of the Agreement on the Appointment of Bishops in China “is to support and promote the proclamation of the Gospel in this country and to restore the full and visible unity of the Church.” Father Bernardo Cervellera, editor-in-chief of the asianews missionary news agency, which covers the Church in China in detail, found that in the two years since the agreement was signed, the Chinese authorities` persecution of Christians has only increased, destroying churches, imprisoning priests and excluding young people from worship. Zhao Lijian, a spokesman for the Chinese Foreign Ministry, said: “After friendly negotiations, China and the Vatican have decided to extend the provisional agreement on the appointment of bishops for two years.” The deal has drawn opposition from conservatives in the Church, who argue that it has exhausted those who have suffered for decades in the chinese underground Catholic Church because these faithful had refused to recognize bishops appointed by the communist government and not by Rome. The agreement, they argue, effectively tolerated China`s religious freedom and human rights violations. Today, mainland China has about a hundred Catholic bishops; Many are very old, but all are now reunited because of the agreement with the Pope. About thirty of them belong to the underground Church and refuse to join the Chinese Catholic Patriotic Association, so they are not recognized by the Beijing authorities.

13.10.2021 ∙ af admin