Card. Zen: “acts of war against the church”

Hard words from our favorite Cardinal, the great bishop of Hong Kong Joseph Card. Zen.  Talk is getting tougher.

Here is the story (my emphasis):

HK cardinal hits out at China over "acts of war"

The top Catholic official on Chinese soil has lashed out at Beijing, saying the ordinations last year of three bishops without Vatican approval were illegitimate and "acts of war."

Hong Kong Cardinal Joseph Zen, who travelled to the Vatican last month to map out the Holy See’s China strategy, told the BBC on Friday: "These three illegitimate ordinations … are acts of war against the church.

"So how can you say that we opt for confrontation? They are waging a war, they want to destroy the church," said Zen, the head of Hong Kong’s Catholic dioceses and a Vatican adviser on Chinese affairs.

A battle between Beijing and the Vatican over control of church posts flared as China’s state-backed Catholic church installed bishops without papal blessing last year.

Until then, bishops were appointed after unofficial consultations with Rome.

In the meantime, Guangzhou’s Sacred Heart Cathedral was scheduled to reopen today fter two years of renovation work.  There was to be a solemn Mass.  Government money paid for most of the work (US$ 2.7 million or about 80%).  It is mainland China’s only granite Gothic church. 


On the wall behind the main altar are traces of the Cultural Revolution, which are being preserved as a testament to China’s history. After bricks had been removed and the wall washed, huge slogans in red paint were revealed such as “Long live Chairman Mao” and the “Working class must exercise leadership of everything.”

Those uncovered slogans from the Cultural Revolution are a metaphor of sorts.  The actions of the PRC official religion arm can be whitewashed, but underneath, something else is going on.  Let us not forget that the Communist Party does nothing out of charity or a spirit of fair play.

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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One Comment

  1. CPT Tom says:

    My wife, whose family was persecuted during the Cultural Revolution, is explained this to me, when I was reading about this Cathedral repair. As you rightly identify, the Chinese Communist party does nothing out of charity. They do these things to keep the faithful and more importantly, the Vatican confused. This gives them the appearance of being cooperative. Then they stick the knife in the back by ordaining new bishops with out Vatican approval. Their goal is not the Truth. They are the dark and not the light. It is important that the Vatican and the Pope keep this in mind and not be blinded by the “whitewash.”

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