Friday, December 10, 2010

"Back To The Time Of Mao"

Does this phrase strike you as the sort of thing that one says lightly? Considering that Mao's murderous reign wiped out far more people than Hitler even imagined to kill in the Holocaust, I would think anybody invoking the Chairman's spectre would do so with a fair amount of seriousness.

So check out John Allen's piece here:

New government pressures on the Catholic church in China, including the election of an illicitly ordained bishop as the new president of a government-controlled bishops’ conference, threaten to “turn the clock back to the times of Mao Zedong,” according to an influential Vatican China-watcher.

Pontifical Institute for Foreign Missions Fr. Bernardo Cervellera, director of the “Asia News” agency and a longtime Vatican advisor on Chinese affairs, said Dec. 10 that the results of an early December assembly of Catholic groups recognized by the country’s Communist government, but not by the Vatican, “reaffirms the power of the Party over the church” and “risks reopening the wounds of division within the church.”

Our Lady of She-Shan, intercede for them!

Back to the story. Things had been going fairly well (relatively speaking) for some time. The recent illicit consecration was part of a shift in policy, something confirmed in this article. The new president of the bishops’ conference is Giuseppe Ma Yinglin of Yunnan, who was ordained without papal recognition. Another illicitly ordained bishop is among the vice-presidents, and Jincai is among the newly chosen vice-presidents of the Patriotic Association.
The new president of the Patriotic Association, Bishop Johan Fang Xinyao of Linyi, was ordained with papal approval, but is also seen as a figure willing to cooperate with the government authorities.

According to Cervellera, the presence of so many illicitly ordained bishops at the top of the country’s official Catholic agencies “raises the fear that from here on, it will be impossible to ordain pastors for China who are in communion with the Holy See.”

In effect, Cervellera said, it seems to be deliberate policy of the Chinese government “to want to create chaos in the church,” while also “extending the control of the Community Party over the entire official church.”

Now, we have to ask ourselves why this is. If we've learned anything from the behavior of past whack-job communist scum regimes, it's that moves like this are basically reactionary in nature. Considering the bad publicity this could generate (if the mainstream media gave a crap), I doubt seriously that Hu Jintao just woke up one morning and decided to REALLY start oppressing the Church. Something has been going on that has generated some fear among the party-types in Beijing. If I was to guess, the real Church has been making some in-roads in places where it isn't welcome. Having done so, the authorities feel the need to publicly put the Church back in its place, lest people start taking this Pope guy seriously.

What sort of stuff am I talking about? How about this?

Another sign that Chinese Catholics at the grassroots are chafing at government pressure came in recent days in a seminary in Hebei, where a hundred seminarians protested against the nomination of a new vice-rector, a member of the Communist Party, by the local ministry for religious affairs. The reaction was so strong, according to local sources, the nomination had to be withdrawn.

Yeah, there's something big going on over there. Check the mention of the bishops' part in all this consecration stuff:

News reports, for example, suggest that several of the 64 “official” bishops who attended the meeting did so only under strong government pressure. According to a report in an Italian newspaper, one bishop apparently fled by car rather than attend the session and is now being sought to face criminal charges.

God bless these men and their flocks. Please pray for them. And the hard part- pray for Hu Jintao and the rest of these murderous nutbags. Pray for their conversion. It's stuff like this that makes loving our enemies tough, but The Master called for us to do it anyway.

No comments: