World News

Unregistered Chinese Catholics Face Increased Pressure Ahead of Deal Renewal

Southeastern province church about to be repurposed by local authorities.

Although there have been delays for both sides to renew the 2018 Sino-Vatican provisional agreement on bishop appointment, the Chinese government does not delay in putting pressure on unregistered Catholics to solicit their membership in the Chinese Patriotic Catholic Association (CPCA).

On September 9, the local government (at southeastern province of Jiangxi) ordered to repurpose the church and turn it into an entertainment venue with a canteen, an amusement arcade, and an activity center for the elderly.

A priest from the Yujiang dioceses also told Bitter Winter that he was summoned three times in just two weeks by local officials, who informed him that the new agreement with the Vatican would no longer be provisional. “They told me that I would be prohibited from celebrating Mass if I refuse to join,” the priest said.  “They even threatened to punish me according to the National Security Law if I do.”

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