Skip to content
Deacon Keith Fournier Hi readers, it seems you use Catholic Online a lot; that's great! It's a little awkward to ask, but we need your help. If you have already donated, we sincerely thank you. We're not salespeople, but we depend on donations averaging $14.76 and fewer than 1% of readers give. If you donate just $5.00, the price of your coffee, Catholic Online School could keep thriving. Thank you. Help Now >

Chinese authorities offer land for new church after demolition protest

Free World Class Education
FREE Catholic Classes

By CNA News
11/5/2019 (1 week ago)
Catholic Online (https://www.catholic.org)

Chinese authorities have offered a compensation to a Catholic community for the destruction of their church. The offer comes after parishioners barricaded themselves in the Church building overnight in protest of the demolition. 

Highlights

By CNA News
Catholic Online (https://www.catholic.org)
11/5/2019 (1 week ago)

Published in Asia Pacific

Keywords: CHINA, BEIJING, CHINA, ASIA - PACIFIC


Beijing, China, (CNA) - Chinese authorities have offered a compensation to a Catholic community for the destruction of their church. The offer comes after parishioners barricaded themselves in the Church building overnight in protest of the demolition. 

In an apparent concession to the protestors, government officials have agreed to provide a piece of land for the church to be rebuilt, as well as money to compensate for the destruction of the original building. 

Catholics in Wu Gao Zhang, part of Hebei's Guantao district, held an overnight vigil in their parish Oct. 31, after local authorities said the church would be destroyed because of an alleged lack of proper building permits. Local Catholics insist that the church was fully approved by the Chinese government, despite the dispute.

The parishioners were joined by priests from the Diocese of Handan. Several of the priests proceeded to help with negotiations between the Catholic community and government officials throughout the night. 

After several hours of negotiations, the Chinese government agreed to provide land and compensation to rebuild the church somewhere else. Although the priests requested that the land be given immediately, prior to the demolition of the church building, it was not immediately clear that this happened.

The church was demolished as scheduled.

The church in Wu Gao Zhang was barely one year old and had been consecrated and opened on August 15, 2018, the Feast of the Assumption. It had been built on farmland that the parishioners had purchased as their old church had become too small for their growing congregation. 

According to UCA News, a Catholic news organization based out of Bangkok, the new church building did not have a permit from China's Religious Affairs Department to operate as a place of worship. This meant that it had to be torn down, even though verbal agreements to allow the construction of the church had been made by other bureaucratic offices. 

Previously, UCA News also reported, many churches had been built with only verbal agreements without any difficulty from government authorities. A priest from the Diocese of Hanban who spoke to UCA News said that he believed that the Chinese government was determined to demolish the church building due to concerns that the diocese was growing too quickly. 

"They dismantle churches without providing any official documents," said the priest. "Instead they simply verbally convey the wishes of the central government." 

During the initial protest in the church building, it was reported that Chinese officials claimed that "the Vatican was on our side" and would support them tearing down the churches. 

For decades, the Church in China was split between the "Chinese Patriotic Catholic Association," a state-run Church under the control of Chinese Communist Party, and the underground Church that was in full communion with the Holy See. The 2018 agreement, the details of which have not been released, was intended to unify the two ecclesiastical communities, although multiple reports out of China have indicated that priests and laity who refuse to worship at government-run churches are have faced increased persecution. 

In the provinces of Jiangxi and Fujian in eastern China, priests who refused to sign agreements binding them to regulations government have been forced out of their homes, and their churches have been closed. The Chinese government has forbidden non-compliant priests from traveling, and many have been forced to go into hiding. 

In July and August, at least five Catholic churches in the Yujiang diocese were forcibly shut down by the government, due to their refusal to join the CPCA. In mid-August, government officials threatened to arrest an underground priest and revoke basic government subsidies to all Catholics in the city of Yingtan after their parish refused to join the state-sponsored Church.

---


'Help Give every Student and Teacher FREE resources for a world-class Moral Catholic Education'


Copyright 2019 - Distributed by THE CALIFORNIA NETWORK


Comments


More Asia Pacific

New Zealand to hold referendum on euthanasia, assisted suicide Watch

Image of Parliament House Wellington

The New Zealand Parliament voted in favor of legalizing euthanasia and assisted suicide Wednesday, sending the bill to a referendum next ... continue reading


UPDATED: Australian High Court refers Cardinal Pell's appeal of sex abuse conviction Watch

Image of Cardinal George Pell

The Australian High Court announced Wednesday that Cardinal George Pell's application for special leave to appeal has been refferred to the ... continue reading



Mother Teresa Award given to group that exposed organ trafficking in China Watch

Image of China's flag

An award named after Mother Teresa was given this week for outstanding efforts in social justice to a U.S.-based non-profit that has ... continue reading


Former Melbourne cathedral workers doubt Pell abuse could have occurred Watch

Image of Cardinal Pell speaks with journalists after being charged with sexual abuse

Two former employees of the cathedral school in Melbourne, Australia are expressing strong doubts about the charges that landed Cardinal ... continue reading


Chinese authorities offer land for new church after demolition protest Watch

Image of

Chinese authorities have offered a compensation to a Catholic community for the destruction of their church. The offer comes after ... continue reading


Never Miss any Updates!

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers.

Catholic Online Logo

Copyright 2019 Catholic Online. All materials contained on this site, whether written, audible or visual are the exclusive property of Catholic Online and are protected under U.S. and International copyright laws, © Copyright 2019 Catholic Online. Any unauthorized use, without prior written consent of Catholic Online is strictly forbidden and prohibited.

Catholic Online is a Project of Your Catholic Voice Foundation, a Not-for-Profit Corporation. Your Catholic Voice Foundation has been granted a recognition of tax exemption under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. Federal Tax Identification Number: 81-0596847. Your gift is tax-deductible as allowed by law.