China’s Catholics: ‘Rome may betray us, but I won’t join a Church which is controlled by the Communist Party’

The Telegraph
By: Neil Connor, shijiazhuang

Father Dong Baolu’s flock were gathered outdoors beside a row of foul-smelling lavatories. They

In the backyard of a rundown house, a Chinese priest stood before his congregation and conducted an unofficial Catholic Mass.
In the backyard of a rundown house, a Chinese priest stood before his congregation and conducted an unofficial Catholic Mass.

had no choice but to worship in this furtive way, as China does not recognise these so-called “house churches”.

Even so, the congregation stayed for two hours, singing hymns and clasping their hands in prayer.

China and the Vatican may now be edging towards a thaw that could see Beijing recognising the illegal church, but only on terms that many local Catholics would condemn as a betrayal.

“It’s possible that Rome may betray us,” said Fr Dong, before he said Mass in the city of Shijiazhuang in Hebei province. “If this happens, I will resign. I won’t join a Church which is controlled by the Communist Party.

“We are suffering like Jesus on the cross. We fight for religious freedom and follow the Gospel – but we are not supported by either Rome or China.”     [FULL  STORY]

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