Pro-pope bishop arrested in China

Chinese authorities have arrested an underground church bishop who organised meetings to distribute and discuss Pope Benedict's Letter to Chinese Catholics.

AsiaNews reports that Mgr Julius Jia Zhiguo was preparing a pastoral letter as well as meetings to explain the Pope's letter.

The Chinese Patriotic Catholic Association wants him instead to join the national Church, separate from the Holy See.

The Pope's 30 June letter singled out the Patriotic Catholic Association for promoting violations of religious freedom. Its purpose is to maintain a national Church separate from the Holy See.

The Diocese of Zhengding is about 270 kilometres south of Beijing with about 110,000 people affiliated with the underground Church.

73 year old Mgr Zhiguo has previously spent more than 15 years in prison.

Mgr Julius Jia Zhiguo, who wanted to disseminate the Pope’s letter, is arrested (AsiaNews, 23/8/07)

Another Chinese bishop released (CathNews, 28/9/06)
Released Chinese bishop seeks reconciliation (13/9/06)
Chinese bishop released after 10 years in prison (CathNews, 28/8/06)
Holy See sends envoys to Beijing for secret talks (CathNews, 19/6/06)
China's first Catholic non-profit approved but arrests continue (CathNews, 4/8/06)
Pope declares diplomatic war with China (CathNews, 5/5/06)

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