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Catholics in Inner Mongolia appeal for prayers amid repression

By on Thursday, 24 May 2012

Paramilitary police in Hohhot,  capital of the Inner Mongolian Autonomous Region, (AP)

Paramilitary police in Hohhot, capital of the Inner Mongolian Autonomous Region, (AP)

Catholics in China’s Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region have called on fellow believers to pray for them today, the World Day of Prayer for the Church in China.

The Asian Church news agency UCA News reported that sources told them the Catholic community in the region has faced a series of suppressive acts by authorities aimed at forcing clergy from the clandestine, or underground, Catholic community to join the government-sanctioned Catholic Patriotic Association.

“It is very likely that the faithful have to quietly pass Pentecost this Sunday, one of the four major church feasts widely celebrated in China, as they did so at Easter,” a source told UCA News.

To avoid arrest, underground priests remain in hiding and cannot carry out normal pastoral work because they have refused to support the patriotic association, the source said.

Fr Joseph Gao Jiangping, an underground diocesan administrator, has been confined in isolation at a detention centre in Hohhot since he was taken into custody on February 15. Church sources said the priest, in his 40s, is in poor physical condition because of torture and continuous interrogation.

Local officials may continue his detention without charge, “worrying that his influence among local Catholics would be enlarged, or they would incur international criticism if he is sentenced,” one source said. “On the other hand, if he is released, it would affect expansion of the official Church community.”

Meanwhile, the government-sanctioned church is gradually taking over large churches previously administered by underground priests.

One source said a newly built Gothic church was taken over by a government-approved priest from neighboring Baotou diocese, while its pastor was forced “to leave and disappear under government pressure”.

  • Xxk999

    Let us rise up and pray for our fellow brothers/sisters and their oppressors. In Jesus’ name we pray!

  • Fr.Thomas Poovathinkal

    OBEYING JESUS THE LORD, LET US PRAY FOR THOSE WHO PERSECUTE US.

    IT IS THE LORD WHO WORKS MIRACLES TO CONVERT ENEMIES INTO FRIENDS AS HE DID WITH ST.PAUL.

  • haoben405
  • Simon Davies

    Meanwhile, the rest of the world turns a blind-eye in the name of economic progress. 

    Last night, UK actors and comedians were sycophantically giving awards to themselves, and this sort of real news doesn’t even get a mention on our many rolling news channels. Is it me, or have I been abducted and flown to Mars without my knowledge? Because this doesn’t feel like planet earth any more.

  • pagnol

    When Cardinal O’Connor (New York) was still alive I asked him why his Dunwoodie seminary was ordaining priests who were sent to China TO SERVE THE so called “CATHOLIC” PATRIOTIC CHURCH. The good cardinal ordered his seminary to respond to my question. The seminary replied in writing that it was an “unfortunate” situation that we should pray will be corrected.

    Unfortunate situation? If they are still doing this I think the seminary should answer directly to the pope, explaining why they are supplying priests to serve the Chicoms’ false “catholic” church, which false church is persecuting the true Church in China.