Editor’s Note: Relations between the Vatican and China have gone downhill ever since 2010 when Beijing began unilaterally ordaining its own state-sanctioned bishops – against the wishes of the Vatican.
July 11, 2012
BEIJING — Tensions between Beijing and the Vatican are mounting after Chinese authorities detained an outspoken Catholic bishop who has defied state control of the church, a move that highlights the Communist Party’s deep mistrust of religious organizations.
Bishop Thaddeus Ma Daqin was whisked away just hours after he announced his resignation from the leadership of the Patriotic Catholic Association, or PCA, the government body that controls China’s state-sanctioned version of the Catholic Church, according to two people close to the PCA.
Ma, whose ordination had been supported by both Beijing and the Vatican, made the announcement during his ordination ceremony on Saturday in the St. Ignatius Cathedral in Shanghai.
In a snub to the authorities, he said he would immediately quit his duties in the association to focus on his new role as auxiliary bishop of Shanghai, one of the largest dioceses in China.