Thursday, July 26, 2007

In Shenyang

Fr. Peter Chao was in the diocese of Shenyang sharing with religious sisters and seminarians some reflections on how to prepare evangelizers for China today. Participants prepared a plan of action that was then presented to the bishop who congratulated them.

The young bishop in Shenyang is Msgr. Paul Pei Junmin. Before being a bishop Msgr Pei has occupied the posts of vice-rector and dean of studies at the major seminary. He is an expert in biblical theology. Claretians first met him when he was the Rector of the seminary in Beijing and he introduced us to the ecclesiastical authorities when back in 1996 we presented the first draft of the Chinese Pastoral Bible.

When he was consecrated bishop, not long ago, AsiaNews had this to say: The very important fact is that this new ordination takes place with the approval of the Holy See. “Fr Pei Junmin received the approval of the Holy Father,” a Vatican source told AsiaNews. “And he is an excellent candidate from all points of view.” Fr Pei Junmin met Benedict XVI on 3 August 2005. Together with another 22 Chinese priests on a trip to Europe, he managed to attend an audience with the pontiff, who greeted him with “particular affection”. Interviewed by AsiaNews on that occasion, Fr Paul had said: “The meeting with the pope was a surprise! None of us would ever have imagined it; we did not even know we would come to Rome. But it was a marvelous thing: the Church of Rome is the mother Church of all churches, including the Chinese one. We wanted to show that the Church in China is united to the Holy See.”

The diocese of Shenyang has more than 70 priests and as many seminarians; 150 sisters and around 100,000 faithful.

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