Skip to comments.Priestly Faculties Granted to Patriotic Association Priests in the United States
Posted on 02/20/2005 8:48:06 PM PST by Land of the Irish
Some U. S. dioceses, such as New York, Boston, San Francisco, and Washington, D.C., have granted priestly faculties to Patriotic Association priests, allowing them to openly offer Holy Mass and administer other Sacraments, including hearing confessions in Roman Catholic parishes. May Catholics who are the recipients of these sacraments from a Patriotic Association priest are in the dark, because they do not know the identity of these Patriotic Association priests.
According to item 5 of the Holy Sees 1988 China directives, The Patriotic bishops and priests are not to be invited or even allowed to celebrate religious functions in public, either in the churches or in the oratories of the various religious institutes.
We do not understand, given the above very clear guideline, how this program of giving faculties to the Patriotic Association priests and allowing them to administer the sacraments in public could be approved by the bishops in the United States.
The most recent case is the appointment of a Patriotic Association priest, Father Ruan Guozhang, to the parish of St. Joseph Church in the China Town of New York City. The written notice sent by the pastor of St. Joseph to his parishioners said simply that Father Ruan will be joining him at St Joseph Church. The pastor did not mention that Father Ruan was from the Diocese of Fuzhou of the Chinese Open (Patriotic Association) Church. He also did not mention that Father Ruan was a Patriotic Association priest who is not a Roman Catholic priest in full communion with the Pope. However, the pastor did unexplainably mention that Father Ruan was from the Diocese of Hong Kong, which he is not unless the Hong Kong diocese has recently incardinated him. By mentioning the Hong Kong diocese, the pastor had given Father Ruan some legitimacy since there is no official Patriotic Association in the Hong Kong diocese. People should have the facts in deciding from which priest they want to receive a sacrament. Without making publicly known in writing that Father Ruan is from the Chinese Open Patriotic Association Church, the faithful are deprived once again of important facts about the priest before receiving a sacrament, because they will take for granted that the priest administering sacraments in a Roman Catholic Church has to be a Roman Catholic priest without knowing that it is actually the contrary at St. Joseph Church of New Yorks China Town.
In fact, Father Ruan was ordained by the Patriotic Association Bishop Aloysius Jin, with whom the Vatican has never declared to be in communion. In addition, Father Ruan reports to Bishop Zheng Chang Cheng who is a Chinese Patriotic Association bishop, with whom the Vatican has also never declared to be in communion. Yet, he will be working in the New York diocese as if he were a Roman Catholic priest, which he is not.
We did not understand such situations when they occurred in other dioceses. We understand even less that such a situation could have happened in New York diocese inasmuch as His Eminence Edward Cardinal Egan is understood to be a conservative bishop. I, therefore, wrote a letter to Cardinal Egan on May 7, 2004, stating my abovementioned thoughts and requesting his explanations. To this date, I have not received his reply.
They will have much to answer for.
|Persecution and Confusion: the Catholic Church in China
by Joseph M. C. Kung
Since the Communists took over China in 1949, tens of thousands of religious believers have been persecuted. Those who retain their Roman Catholic faith, who remain in communion with the Holy Father and the Universal Church and who refuse to join the government-sponsored Patriotic Association, are forced to go underground. About fifty underground bishops are taking care of ninety dioceses and eight million souls. They have practically no financial support from the free world, no churches and no weekly collections. Most priests must work as factory or farm workers and live below the poverty level to carry out their ministries. The Mass, prayer services and even praying over the dying are considered subversive activities because they are done without the governments permission and are punishable by exorbitant fines, detention, house arrest, and sentences to jail or labor camps.
Failing to stamp out the Catholic Church, the Chinese government created its own church, called the Chinese Catholic Patriotic Association, in 1957. The short-term objective of the Patriotic Association is to replace the Roman Catholic Church and implement a government-controlled church. Its long-term goal is to eliminate religion entirely in order to achieve a purely materialistic, autocratic society. However, the Patriotic Association did not factor in the power of the Holy Spirit and the blood of the martyrs, which is the seed of the Church. Instead of being destroyed, the population of the underground Catholic Church increased from about three million in the early 1950s to more than eight million today. In his 3 December 1996 speech, the Holy Father proudly referred to the underground church as "a precious jewel of the Catholic Church."
Examples of Recent Persecution
lThe apartments of Bishop Joseph Fan Zhongliang, S.J., the Coadjutor Bishop of the underground and faithful Roman Catholic Diocese of Shanghai, and Father Zen Caijun, S.J., a diocesan priest in Shanghai, were ransacked at the same time that U.S. Vice President Al Gore and House Speaker Newt Gingrich visited China this spring to discuss human rights with the Chinese government. Many religious articles, some cash and personal items were confiscated; no reasons were ever given and no warrant or receipt was issued at the time.
lA Chinese Communist Party document detailing a plan to eradicate the underground Catholic Church was recently discovered. The plan was to be implemented from 25 November 1996 through 31 March 1997. It included registering and setting up a file for each underground Catholic, blockading the exit of every village on Christmas day (to guarantee that no one leave to attend prayer meetings), forcing believers to write letters renouncing their Catholic faith and forcing them to join the Patriotic Association.
lBishop Thomas Zen Jingmu, 75, was sentenced to three years in a labor camp for celebrating a Roman Catholic Mass without government permission.
lFive thousand soldiers with armored cars and helicopters sealed off the tiny village of Dong Lu in Hebei where a national Marian shrine is located. The soldiers destroyed the shrine, confiscated the statue of the Blessed Virgin Mary, and arrested two bishops, many priests and laity. Bishop Su Zhimin, bishop of Baoding where Dong Lu is located, has been missing for about seventeen months. Auxiliary Bishop An Shuxin and pastor Rev. Cui Xingang have been in jail since March 1996.
The Patriotic Association
As soon as the Patriotic Association was established in 1957, all the properties of the Roman Catholic Church were confiscated. In the 1980s, as China opened its doors to the West, many of the churches and other properties were given to the Patriotic Association. Many American Catholics have been in China and in the cathedrals in Shanghai and Beijing. However, they may not have realized that they were not in Roman Catholic churches, but in churches belonging to the Patriotic Association that only looked Roman Catholic. The vestments are the same, as are most of the prayers and the hymns.
The most important article in the constitution of the Patriotic Association is its autonomy from the Pope. The Patriotic Association does not recognize the supreme administrative, legislative and judicial authority of the Pope. Communion with the Pope is a basic Catholic doctrine that must be upheld, and is not just a discipline. Since the Patriotic Association is not in communion with the Pope and does not believe in the infallibility of the Pope, it is not a part of the Roman Catholic Church.
In addition, some of the teachings of the Patriotic Association directly contradict some of the teachings of the Catholic Church. For example, in their pastoral letter on the dignity and responsibility of women, the bishops of the Patriotic Association openly advised women to implement "Chinas platform for the development of women," which includes birth control, sterilization and the one-child policy that forces women to have abortions.
The bishops of the Patriotic Association are not appointed by the Holy See but by the Chinese government, and are consecrated without the approval of the Holy See. The oath taken by the Patriotic Association bishops at their consecration includes a clause to support a Chinese Catholic Church autonomous from the Holy See. According to Canon Law section 1382, it appears that all Patriotic Association bishops are automatically or ipso facto excommunicated by this action, with or without any public announcements from the Holy See.
The China Catholic Bishops College
In an attempt to cover its political agenda and to make it appear more like a Church, the Patriotic Association established the Chinese Bishops Conference in 1980. When the Patriotic Association bishops traveled outside China, they had to identify themselves as bishops from the Patriotic Association. This had an undesirable effect. So in 1992 the Chinese Bishops Conference changed its name to the China Catholic Bishops College. Patriotic Association members now introduce themselves as Catholic priests or bishops without disclosing that they are in fact with the Patriotic Association and have no ties with the Vatican.
This deceptive change in terminology produced predictable results. Since then numerous stories have appeared in the media, including Catholic magazines, about the "Catholic Church in China." These stories were, in fact, describing the Patriotic Associations church. Numerous tours have been organized by Roman Catholic institutions, such as China Bureau, to visit the churches and seminaries of the "Catholic Church," but they toured the Patriotic Association facilities. Many conferences have been sponsored by Roman Catholic institutions ostensibly for the "Catholic Church in China," but are for the Patriotic Associations church. Meanwhile, the persecutions of the loyal underground Catholic Church by the Chinese government continue, while the world remains deceived about the state of religious freedom in China.
In the meantime, Patriotic Association priests and bishops, masquerading as bona fide Roman Catholic clerics, have traveled around the world soliciting donations. According to some sources, misinformed but well-meaning Catholic institutions have donated millions of dollars to the Patriotic Association.
To add insult to injury, many of those trips to the U.S. by the Patriotic Assocations personnel are funded by the U.S. government.
It is very sad to note that many missionaries, such as the Maryknolls, have gone to China and cooperated with the Chinese government or the Patriotic Association for various projects while ignoring the underground Catholic Church. Section 678 of Canon Law states that all religious organizations working in a diocese must receive approval from the Ordinary, or bishop, in charge of the diocese. No permission was obtained from the underground Ordinary, the rightful authority in the Diocese, for much of this missionary work. These missionaries have obviously bypassed this requirement of Canon Law, knowingly or not.
Catholics must be wary of requests from organizations for donations to support projects for the "Chinese Catholic Church" and must determine whether these projects are for the Patriotic Associations church or the loyal underground Catholic Church.
There are approximately fifty Patriotic Association seminarians and priests studying in various Roman Catholic seminaries in the United States. This "study" program is organized by the Maryknolls for the Patriotic Association. These students are given full tuition and room and board scholarships from various dioceses. Since these dioceses are supported by the donations of their parishoners, devout Catholics are unwittingly supporting these Patriotic Association seminarians and priests. Upon completion of their studies, the Patriotic Association seminarians will return to China (some have already) to be ordained by Patriotic Association bishops and will serve in dioceses not in communion with the Holy Father.
During the past thirty months, some dioceses granted faculties to Patriotic Association priests studying in the U.S., allowing them to offer Holy Mass and administer other sacraments in public. Many Catholics receiving these sacraments from Patriotic Assocation priests are unaware that these priests are not in communion with the Roman Pontiff.
China continues its oppressive religious policies not only because many church leaders sent wrong and misleading signals, but also because most governments in the free world are not serious about their demands for human rights improvements in China. In the meantime, the current policy of the U.S. government to distance human rights from trade sends a clear and immoral message to China that the U.S. will tolerate human rights abuses for the sake of profit.
All of the above-mentioned examples of cooperation are extended to the Patriotic Association and the Chinese government while the persecution of Christians continues. It is no wonder that there is no incentive for the Chinese government to stop its repressive religious policy and the persecution continues unabated.
Many will claim that the above events are being carried out in the furtherance of reconciliation. In his speech broadcast to China from Manila 14 January 1995, the Pope said, genuine love cannot be separated from truth. Reconciliation cannot be done by compromising the faith. Neither can it be done by forsaking the true Church.
What We Can Do
There are many things we can do to help our brothers and sisters in China:
lPray for the underground Church and for our separated brothers and sisters in the Patriotic Association so that we may be one flock with one Shepherd in Christ.
lPersuade the National Conference of Catholic Bishops (NCCB) to establish a special commission to monitor the persecutions in China and worldwide. In addition, get the NCCB to take a stand on religious persecution in China and on the Patriotic Association, and formulate a plan to raise awareness in all parishes across the U.S.
lTo raise awareness in parishes, include prayers to stop religious persecution worldwide in the general intercessions at Mass and put slogans such as "We are in solidarity with the persecuted Church" in parish bulletins.
lInform elected politicians about the religious persecution in China, and ask them to consider this when formulating U.S. foreign policy in China.
lAsk local newspapers to monitor and report on the persecution as well as editorialize on this issue. Media coverage is crucial. Timely and continuous reporting of these atrocities in the free world is extremely important and puts the Chinese government on notice.
lStockholders should find out if companies in which they invest are doing business in China. If so, they should introduce a resolution to establish a standard for tolerance of human rights violations there. Once Chinas human rights violations exceed this standard, the company should automatically reduce or withdraw its business with China. These kinds of resolution are already being introduced: Boeing is facing a demand by a group of stockholders to adopt human rights standards for its operations in China, and similar resolutions have been presented to Motorola and Allied Signal.
lFinally, support The Cardinal Kung Foundation, which is here to tell the world about the plight of the underground Roman Catholic Church in China and to assist its bishops, priests, other religious and faithful. The Foundation may be the only organization working directly with the Roman Catholic bishops in China and is in need of funding. The Foundation works closely with all major human rights organizations and is the source of almost all the published reports on the persecution of the Roman Catholic Church in China.
Joseph M. C. Kung is the president of The Cardinal Kung Foundation.
**The bishops of the Patriotic Association are not appointed by the Holy See but by the Chinese government, and are consecrated without the approval of the Holy See. The oath taken by the Patriotic Association bishops at their consecration includes a clause to support a Chinese Catholic Church autonomous from the Holy See.**
The telling words.
Hey your 'pal' Cardinal Egan is at it again. sigh
For those who wish to remain Roman Catholic -
Liberals are very much into the concept of "national" churches, hence the proliferation of bishops' conferences, etc. over the last few decades. I guess the Pope favors it, too.
American bishops dare call themselves Roman Catholic and Shepard of the faithful, while they:
All thanks to the deceitful and shameless nature of corrupted and unholy American bishops.
IMO the faithful Roman Catholics in China revere Sacred Dogma and Traditions, and this alone is the sub-Rosa reason black hearted American bishops are eagerly taking part in this spiritual scam. Again, IMO the black hearts in the Vatican are waging a world war against vestige of true Roman Catholicism.
Evil is as evil does. May they seek His forgiveness, and heal the wounds they have inflected upon His Church, before they die. Contrarily, may the God Lord swiftly bring their corrupted souls before Him, and cast them into the fires of eternal damnation.
St. Casimir of Poland, I pray you will intercede with our Heavenly Father on behalf of all the oppressed peoples of China; beaten, tortured, and murdered by the greatest enemy of His Holy Church. I plea for you to strengthen the will of the Holy See to assist in protecting those in China loyal to Him and His Vicar on Earth. Bring attention to the unrelenting devotion our Chinese brothers and sisters are witnessing in His Name - who refuse to deny Him as their One True God.
I pray Saint Casimir for the hundreds of Chinese Catholics who have over the past sixty years chose death rather than bow to communism - murdered rather than deny their faith.
I especially pray for the soul of Bishop Gao Kexian, who was declared dead on January 24 2005 after spending the last five years in a Chinese communist prison. He was cremated the following day in the presence of the police. No relative or faithful were allowed to attend the cremation, nor was the Bishop allowed any religious comforts. His body was not blessed as well.
Our Chinese brothers and sisters in Christ are suffering the extremes of human torment, St. Casimir. Give them the strength of their beliefs to resist all forms of attempts to have them deny He who died for the many of us. I ask this in the name of Jesus Our Lord, amen.
Our Lady of La Salette, pray for us.
Our Lady of Fatima, pray for us.
Saint Pius X, pray for us.
Saint Padre Pio, pray for us.
Sister Maria Lucia of Jesus and the Immaculate Heart, pray for us.
I use to bad muth the SSPX and tolerate the abuses going on in my parishm, but after a certain priest came and compared his looks to Pee-Wee Herman and asked if anyone in the church doesn't believe in God, I had it.
I've been going to the local SSPX chapel, which will be dedicated in April by Bishop Williamson. No bad mouthing of the Pope or the post-conciliar Church as people warned me at the church. Instead, solid, dogmatic Catholicism. And get this - respect in the santuary! Something unheard of where I live. I only wished I would have arrived there earlier.
OK.....here is all the dirt you will want to know....and a few things which you dont. Yes, Egan is in it up to his eyeballs...but so was O'Connor.
St. Joseph's in "Chinatown" is actually an Italian national parish, in the famous (infamous) "Five Points" section just north of City Hall...quite walkable. Chinatown has been expanding by leaps and bounds into this area and Little Italy (which is really little today!).
So.......there you have it. All thanks to his Most August Emptyness, Edward "Cardinal" Egan.
Chinese Commie priests in the Arch of NY? Yes. For nearly 15 years now. They have been taking courses at St. Joseph's seminary! They have been "in residence" at certain parishes over this time period where they have said mass, heard confessions, preached, etc. And.....of course been fed and housed at parishioner expense. Do they have faculties in the Archdiocese of NY? Seemingly...yes. Have they also been ordained in the Archdiocese? Maybe? How many of them? I lost track.
We also have "American Commie priests" as well. They are called the Marynoll Fathers. Anyone familiar with the order & the Marynoll school of theology (sic) will know whereof I speak. The pastor of The neighboring parish to St. Joseph is pastored by an American Caucasian Marynoll priest...Transfiguration, on Mott street.
I'm very happy for you! :-)
Don't forget the Church of the Transfiguration, the oldest Chinese parish in New York.
... speaking of ordinations which have not been approved of by Rome, that's a funny thing to say.
They are not recignized as being Catholic priests, their orders have been declared invalid, and bishops have been instructed NOT to permit them to offer mass. IOW, they have never been "frocked." What more can be done to "defrock" them?
Cardinal Eagen is to blame, not Rome.
Wait a second... They are being ordained by AMERICAN bishops? Umm, doesn't that make their ordination, although unwise and probably impious, 100% valid?
The article is about a priest who was ordained by a pretender bishop. (Shall I coin the term, anti-bishop?) That is an horrific offense against the faith of the poor congregants. Add to that the lies to make them appear legitimate, and the crime, if true as alleged, is unspeakably demonic. But you are talking about something far less grave.
Cardinal Egan still holds office and is in "full communion with Rome".
The buck stops in Rome.