The Vatican has agreed to allow the Communist Party to control the leadership of the church, thereby destroying the Church for many underground Catholics in China, and around the world who had hoped to see the Vatican use their authority and power to apply pressure to end Communist control instead of submitting to it.
This announcement comes at the same time the Pope has announced his support of Same gender Marriage.
Cardinal Jospeh Zen blasted the Vatican’s deal with communist China, calling it a “step toward the annihilation” of China’s underground churches who resist the state.
“In fact, the deal is a major step toward the annihilation of the real Church in China,” Zen wrote.
Zen argued that Pope Francis is sympathetic toward communists because he is sympathetic toward the poor and, in Francis’s native Argentina, care for the poor is conflated with communism, given South America’s history of the rich and the military systematically oppressing the poor. This, Zen said, has led Francis to view communists with not only sympathy but optimism.
According to the Hong Kong Free Press it is a disaster for China:
A secretive 2018 agreement between Beijing and the Vatican was renewed Thursday, despite strident US condemnation and warnings from underground Chinese priests loyal to Rome that they have only become more marginalised since it was signed.
The deal allows both Beijing and the Holy See a say in appointing bishops in an attempt to close a schism in China’s 12-million-strong Catholic community.
Washington had put intense pressure on the Vatican to scrap the agreement, saying it has failed to shield Chinese Catholics from persecution.
“After friendly consultations,” both sides agreed to the extension “for two years”, foreign ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian told reporters on Thursday.
“The two sides will maintain close communication and consultation, and continue to push forward the process of improving relations.”
The Communist Party is officially atheist and exercises strict control over all recognised religious institutions, including vetting sermons.
The New York Times reported, ” The Vatican said that it had extended an agreement with Beijing over the appointment of bishops in China, weeks after the U.S. secretary of state traveled to the Vatican on an unsuccessful mission to kill it.”
Jimmy Lai, who has been persecuted for journalism in Hong Kong, wrote on Twitter:
But Zen wasn’t able to convince Francais to move away from Communism. Johnathon Chen from the Wall Street Journal wrote about Zen and said, “@CardJosephZen criticized the Pope for ignoring Beijing’s clampdown on freedoms after failing to get a meeting Francis in Rome last month. “The Holy See is closing both eyes on all the injustices that the Communist Party inflicts on the Chinese people.”
“The Vatican renewed its controversial power-sharing agreement with Beijing on Thursday—not that it thinks the deal has gone all that well. Says the Vatican’s secretary of state: The results haven’t “been particularly brilliant,” Chen wrote.
In an extraordinary sign of dissatisfaction, one Chinese former underground bishop, Vincent Guo Xijin, submitted his resignation to Pope Francis, telling his flock that he wasn’t “in step with the times” and didn’t wish to be an “obstacle to progress,” he said.
“On the other hand, millions of Chinese were able to follow Pope Francis’ morning masses on WeChat this year as the Vatican streamed daily events during Italy’s coronavirus lockdown—a sign of progress,” wrote @francescosisci, an Italian Preist living in Beijing.
The Official statement follows:
China and the Vatican announced almost simultaneously that they will extend the “experimental implementation phase” of their agreement regarding the appointment of bishops.
In a press release, the Holy See praises the two parties’ “good communication and cooperation” and expresses its intention to “pursue an open and constructive dialogue for the benefit of the life of the Catholic Church and the good of Chinese people.”
The United States government had pressured the Vatican not to renew the agreement, to which the Holy See responded that it wasn’t a political agreement, but one of “ecclesiastical and pastoral value.”
The Vatican acknowledges that the agreement does not address other important matters, but focuses only on the appointment of new bishops. It’s part of the politics of small steps that Card. Pietro Parolin described.
CARD. PIETRO PAROLIN
Secretary of State, Vatican
September 30, 2020
“Our way of doing politics is about taking small steps. We believe that every result—even if it isn’t striking, even if it isn’t eye-catching, even if, at first, perhaps it seems to not yield big results—is however, a step forward, toward the affirmation also of greater religious freedom.”
China’s People’s University
“It’s not a diplomatic agreement because the Vatican hasn’t recognized Beijing, and neither does Beijing seem to want that. It knows that a diplomatic agreement would further isolate Taiwan, and that Taiwan could then become nervous and react dangerously. I think the Holy See’s strategy is very wise and prudent. It doesn’t yield, and at the same time, it seeks to maintain the ties that sustain this complicated relationship.”
The content of the agreement is not public. In two years, it has allowed for the appointment of only two new Chinese bishops in communion with the pope, despite the fact that there are about 50 vacant dioceses.
That’s why instead of renewing or solidifying the agreement, the Vatican has decided to extend only the experimental phase.
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The next two years will help determine whether or not this agreement allows Chinese Catholics to have bishops in communion with the pope. The Vatican and China’s diplomatic ties had been non-existent since Mao rose to power in 1950 and began repressing all religions.
Kari is an ex-Community Organizer who writes about Voter Engagement, Cultural Marxism and Campaigns. She has been a grassroots volunteer with the GOP, on and off for 18 years. She is a Homeschool Mom in North Carolina and loves Photojournalism and Citizen Journalism. @Saorsa1776