The Chinese government has deviated from its agreement with the Catholic Church by unilaterally appointing a bishop connected to the Communist Party to oversee Shanghai, which is China’s biggest Roman Catholic diocese.
Information about the appointment of Shen Bin as bishop was sent to the Holy See via a letter from the Council of Chinese Bishops, which is under the full control of the Communist Party in China. The Vatican doesn’t recognize the Council of Chinese Bishops as a legitimate body. Reports indicate that the appointment of Shen as bishop was conducted without the approval of the pope and was made unilaterally.
Last October, the Vatican renewed a controversial agreement with the CCP. Initially approved in 2018 — and subsequently renewed in 2020 and 2022 — the agreement allows the Chinese government to submit candidates for bishop offices but allegedly leaves the final decision to the pope.
Vatican officials said in a statement last fall they were “committed to continuing a respectful and constructive dialogue with the Chinese Party for a productive implementation of the Accord and further development of bilateral relations, with a view to fostering the mission of the Catholic Church and the good of the Chinese people.”
That agreement, though, has seemingly been ignored by the CCP.
The Chinese government consistently violates the human rights of religious adherents, from abusing minority Muslims to destroying churches and even rewriting Scripture to align with communism.
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