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The Two Sides of China’s Party
Catholic World Report ^ | 12/18/12 | Anthony E. Clark, Ph.D.

Posted on 12/19/2012 6:58:44 AM PST by marshmallow

Remembering Fr. Charles McCarthy, SJ, an American Jesuit in Shanghai.

Father Charles McCarthy, SJ, sitting to the left of the famous bishop of Shanghai, Ignatius Gong Pinmei, better known today as Cardinal Kung, Shanghai, 1952. (Courtesy of Mary Jo McCarthy Reynolds. Copy of photograph held at the California Jesuit Province Archive, Santa Clara, CA)

I have lived in China several times since my first stay in 1996, when I lived in Beijing as a Chinese language student. Deng Xiaoping was still alive then, and people thought that China was emerging from its hard-line era of Chairman Mao. And much has indeed changed since Deng took office and reformed China’s economic policies. I am once again in Beijing, this time during the Eighteenth Party Congress: newspapers, television specials, and long red banners with Communist slogans have covered the city in a “Red” canvas of optimism, and . . . propaganda. Here is one example: turning the corner after Mass this morning was an enormous red banner reminiscent of the Maoist era. “Long live the great people of China! Long live the great Communist Party of China! (伟大的中国人民万岁!伟大的中国共产党万岁!).” Slogans such as these are being given new birth as China struggles to redefine itself as a Communist country that is growing more conspicuously wealthy as Western countries grow more economically challenged. Exiting from the subway I saw still another banner extolling how Socialism will “manifest a great resurgence of the Chinese people! (实现中华民族伟大的复兴!).”

As the Party Congress continued, I thought it would be opportune to write a column on the other side of the Party, one that only fifty years ago imprisoned foreign priests, nuns, and Chinese Catholics, accusing them of being “spies,” “saboteurs’,” and “counterrevolutionaries.” One of the priests arrested in the 1950s was Father Charles McCarthy, a Jesuit from the California Province.....

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TOPICS: Catholic; History; Ministry/Outreach
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1 posted on 12/19/2012 6:58:47 AM PST by marshmallow
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