January 7, 1988
Bishop Ignatius Gong, 87, former Roman Catholic bishop of Shanghai who was jailed for 30 years on charges of high treason before being freed on parole in 1985, has had his political rights restored by the Shanghai Higher People's Court, the New China News Agency said. The prelate was sentenced to life imprisonment in 1955 on charges of high treason when he refused to join a movement severing ties between China's Catholic Church and the Vatican.
September 18, 1989 |
John Paul II, who has traveled farther and tried harder to broaden the Roman Catholic Church's international contacts than any Pope before him, is "one for two" in his patient attempts to win a thaw in Vatican relations with the Communist giants. President Mikhail S. Gorbachev's new-look Soviets and their allies in East Europe seem willing to meet the Pope halfway. Paramount leader Deng Xiaoping's Chinese are not at all interested.
January 10, 1988 |
Making his first statement to the outside world after nearly 30 years in prison and more than two years on parole, Shanghai's former Roman Catholic bishop, Ignatius Gong, said Saturday that he remains loyal to the Vatican. The best known of hundreds of priests who were persecuted by the Communists in the 1950s, Gong became a symbol of resistance to Communist authority.
October 2, 2000 |
Pope John Paul II added the first Chinese to the roll of saints Sunday, declaring 120 Chinese Catholics and foreign missionaries to be martyrs in the church's 5-century-long--and ongoing--struggle in China. China's state-run church bitterly protested the canonization of the 87 Chinese and 33 foreign missionaries as a "public humiliation." The canonization fell on China's National Day celebrating the 51st anniversary of Communist rule.
May 30, 1988 |
Pope John Paul II on Sunday named 25 new cardinals from 18 countries, including prelates from Lithuania and Hong Kong in a move to bolster the Roman Catholic Church in the Soviet Union and in China, after it assumes control of Hong Kong in 1997. Two Americans, Archbishops James A. Hickey of Washington, D.C., and Edmund C. Szoka of Detroit, were on the list.
December 25, 1989 |
Thousands of Chinese packed churches Christmas Eve to pray and sing joyful hymns once banned by the Communist nation, and church officials said their congregations have grown since last June's crackdown on the pro-democracy movement. Large crowds of worshipers and the merely curious jammed into Beijing's churches for evening Protestant services and midnight Mass at Catholic churches. Some services were so crowded that many worshipers were forced to wait outside in frigid weather.