Vatican says it has high hopes of better ties with China

Pope Francis waves as he leads the Angelus prayer in Saint Peter's Square at the Vatican August 14, 2016. REUTERS/Max Rossi

Pope Francis waves as he leads the Angelus prayer in Saint Peter’s Square at the Vatican August 14, 2016. REUTERS/Max Rossi

The Vatican is hopeful it can improve ties with China after decades of tension, the Roman Catholic Church’s highest-ranking diplomat said on Saturday, adding that warmer relations would benefit the whole world.

Beijing severed links with the Vatican in 1951 shortly after the Communist Party took power and launched a crackdown on organized religion, with China’s new rulers setting up their own church and appointing bishops without the pope’s backing.

After decades of mistrust, Pope Francis is pushing to improve relations and his secretary of state, Cardinal Pietro Parolin, sounded upbeat about the chances of success.

“There is much hope and expectation that there will be new developments and a new season in relations between the Holy Sea and China,” he said in a speech in the northern Italian city of Pordenone, which was released to reporters in the Vatican.

“(This) will benefit not just Catholics in the land of Confucius, but the whole country, which boasts one of the greatest civilisations on the planet,” he said.

“Dare I say, it would also be of benefit to an ordered, peaceful and fruitful cohabitation of peoples of all nations in a world, such as ours, which is lacerated by so many tensions and so many conflicts.”

For the Vatican, a thaw in relations with China would offer the prospect of easing the plight of Christians on the mainland, who have often been persecuted by the authorities.

For China, good relations could burnish its international image and soften criticism of its human rights record.

The Vatican is the only Western state that does not have diplomatic ties with Beijing, maintaining instead formal relations with the Republic of China, Taiwan, which Beijing views as a renegade province.

Parolin made clear the Vatican wanted formal ties. “The new and hoped-for good relations with China, including diplomatic relations, God willing, are not an end in themselves,” he said, reiterating that they would be good for world peace.

A Reuters investigation this year suggested the Vatican and China were working on a deal that would fall short of full diplomatic ties but would address key issues at the heart of the divide between the two sides.

“One has to be realistic and accept that there are a number of problems that need resolving between the Holy See and China and that often, because of their complexity, they can generate different points of view,” Parolin said.

(Reporting by Crispian Balmer; editing by Andrew Roche)

Source: Reuters “Vatican says it has high hopes of better ties with China”

Note: This is Reuters report I post here for readers’ information. It does not mean that I agree or disagree with the report’ views.


5 Comments on “Vatican says it has high hopes of better ties with China”

  1. Superb Website, Keep up the beneficial job. Appreciate it!.


  2. Simon says:

    We witness the power or lack of power of the Catholic faith and the Christian god this past week in the earthquake that shook a deeply religious town in the country. A convent collapsed and nuns who devoted their lives to Jesus covered in blood. There was report of holy Christian cemetary being uprooted, tombs cracked open and corpse spilling out. While all this can be explained by science one cannot feel religion or superstitions should influence politics.


  3. Steve says:

    China is the Land of the great three religious roots – Confucianism as to youth, Taoism as to adults and Chinese Buddhism as to the wise old man. One learns Confucianism as the foundation for accepting Taoism and Buddhism. But, if one only knows the teaching of Taoism, one do not understand the principles of Buddhism. Every established Buddhist Monastery of Mahayana Buddhism teaches Confucianism as a prerequisite to learning Chinese Buddhism of Chan and Pureland School especially to children.

    Catholicism and Christianity has No foundation of such magnitude as a religious and moral education. Should the Vatican engage in politics via religion in China, the Chinese Govt. should severe links with the Vatican as they did in 1951.


    • Historian says:

      Pope Cardinal Tong in Hong Kong has said: “The mission of the Catholic Church is not to change the institution or administrative agency of nations. It cannot and should not intervene in political struggles.”

      It is good to see the Catholic Church return to its founding principles. Jesus himself told his followers to render under Caesar what belongs to Caesar.

      The poisonous legacy of John Paul II is finally being overturned. He drove away millions of American Catholics over abortion, and presided over the sexual abuse of thousands of young boys by priests. Instead of tending to the religious life of his flock, he was overthrowing the government of Poland.

      Pope Francis is a very wise man. In 500 years, he will still be remembered as the pope who negotiated a concordat with China. John Paul II will be considered an embarrassment.


      • Steve says:

        Christian and Catholic priest committed genocide, rapes, torture, robbery and sex crimes on women, aboriginal children, ethnicities, stolen generation as sex slaves, etc, etc. The list is just too long and I will not elaborate on this post. U are a Historian, go research. Pope John Paul 11 is just one of a thousand priest. Not too long go in Rawanda 1994, Catholic priest committed mass genocide with untold suffering on people sheltering in his own church. Unimaginable but true. He is in life imprisonment.

        True religion is Not about looking to God for excuses because God is neither the Arbitrator nor End your human life believing he has a plan for you in the afterlife.

        The teaching of Confucius alone will send you to the heavens much faster than you can imagine. Why.? Because It is a teaching of moral behaviour, instilling virtue, respect and filial piety to all people and country. It is the foundation of All educational religions. Although in Christianity, the teaching of the ten commandments can send one into the heavens, but without the moral foundation, virtue, respect and filiality, even the high priest including the pope (as you mentioned John Paul 11) will fall into the bottomless pit.

        One’s moral behaviour cannot be true without Virtue and Self Respect especially for a Priest. This is the reason Catholic priests cannot differentiate between political and religious life because they have No foundation in moral education of self respect, instilling virtue, filiality, sincerity and trustworthiness. The priests forgot they are called monks, Not the common lay people. Whether Pope John Paul 11 is an embarrassment or Pope Francis is a wise man is Not the talking point. It’s the foundation that is lacking in Christianity. After all, the Good Lord only taught for about 7 years. Half in the caves and half in public.

        Be a good Christian,practise your ten commandments and please research into Confucianism to enhance your foundation. Better still investigate into Buddhism.