The Mission Hub

The Pontifical Mission Societies include the Society for the
Propagation of the Faith, the Missionary Childhood Association, the Society of St.Peter Apostle, and the Missionary Union of Priests and Religious. These Societies promote a prayerfulmissionary spirit among baptized Catholics and to gather a fund of support for the evangelizing and pastoral programs of more than 1,150 local churches of the Developing World.

Friday, August 10, 2012

Deliver Us From Evil

Recent news reports coming out of Hong Kong made me recall my visit July 18, 2011 with the retired Cardinal Archbishop of Hong Kong, Cardinal Joseph Zen.  The cardinal is an outspoken advocate of the Church’s right to function apart from the ongoing control and persecution by the civil government in China.

As many of you are aware, there has been a long-standing struggle between the Holy See and the arm of the Chinese civil government known as the Catholic Patriotic Association, particularly centering on the appointment of bishops in China.  Periodically, the government appoints a bishop of its own choosing, someone who is under their control and who will do what they wish without question, usurping the right of the Holy Father to make these appointments.  Then, legitimately ordained Catholic bishops are forced to ordain the priest whom the CPA has chosen.  This results in the valid but illicit (illegal) ordination of these bishops whose loyalty is directed primarily to the CPA rather than to the Holy See.

Recently Thaddeus Ma Daquin was appointed as auxiliary bishop of Shanghai with the approval of both the CPA and the Vatican.  This seemed to be a step forward.  However, as soon as he was ordained, he announced that he was resigning from the CPA in order to devote himself completely to his task as bishop.  As you may imagine, this has resulted in a firestorm of controversy and the news services report that Bishop Ma Daquin is “on retreat” at the seminary in his diocese.  He has not been seen publicly since.

 How easy it is for us to forget the trials of many of our brothers and sisters as they practice their Catholic faith.  We know that almost half of the Catholics in China still worship in underground congregations.  Persecution of the Church, subtle and otherwise, still exists in many parts of the world.  We pray for the Church in China and for all those places where the Church is not free.
-Rev. Rodney J. Copp, JCL

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