Thursday, September 27, 2007

Vatican approves Chinese government choice for bishop of Beijing

The selection of the Reverend Joseph Li Shan, who has been installed as the Roman Catholic bishop of Beijing on Friday, September 21, was no surprise to those who closely follow religious affairs in China. Li, 42, who rose steadily through a Chinese Catholic clergy that was far reduced by the Cultural Revolution and was slowly rebuilt as the Chinese government relaxed its attitude toward officially recognized organized religions, has been in the wings for some time.

Many voices could be heard saying that the discreet way the appointment has been handled and, above all, the avoidance of any open dispute bodes well for future relations between China and the Vatican.

Joseph Li Shan's appointment is expected to ease the tension between the Vatican and the Chinese government.

We highly recommend an excellent article by John Allen entitled: The uphill journey of Catholicism in China (

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