Tag Archives: China

Our Lady Help of Christians, Our Lady of Sheshan: a prayer for Chinese Catholics

Our Lady of Sheshan.jpg

Today is the day that Benedict XVI designated to be a World Day of Prayer for China, particularly our Chinese Christian brothers and sisters. The Catholics in China, indeed, all Christians in China have not been respected for the their belief in Jesus Christ and His sacrament, the Church. Pope Francis has reminded us of this act of charity. 

At Wednesday’s General Audience in Rome, Francis recalled that under the patroness of Our Lady, Help of Christians, we go to God. 

The Chinese Catholics venerate under the title of Our Lady of Sheshan, Shanghai.

Pope Francis said:

I urge all Catholics around the world to join in prayer with our brothers and sisters who are in China, to implore from God the grace to proclaim with humility and joy Christ, who died and rose again; to be faithful to His Church and the Successor of Peter and to live everyday life in service to their country and their fellow citizens in a way that is consistent with the faith they profess.

Making our own a few words of prayer to Our Lady of Sheshan, together with you I would like to invoke Mary: Our Lady of Sheshan, sustain all those in China, who, amid their daily trials, continue to believe, to hope, to love. May they never be afraid to speak of Jesus to the world, and of the world to Jesus.

Mary, Virgin most faithful, support Chinese Catholics, render their commitments, which are not easy, more and more precious in the eyes of the Lord, and nurture the affection and the participation of the Church in China in the journey of the Universal Church.”

Benedict XVIs prayer for today, inaugurated in 2008 for the Feast of Our Lady Help of Christians; 
Our Lady of Sheshan, states:

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Shanghai’s new auxiliary bishop faces government crackdown

Watching the current affairs of the Catholic Church in China always leaves me a bit perplexed. For me, there is no easy way to understand such a complex situation. The day bishops were ordained by the government sponsored Church without the approval of the Holy Father. This is not a mere stepping on someone’s toes. It is the breaking of communion between the head and the body, between the Pope and a bishop. Catholics follow Saint Peter to Christ. Catholics faithful to the Faith thereby faithful to the Pope suffer for such obedience. In fact, Bishop Ma said the gathered people that he would not work with the government Church, his ministry was restricted. He went missing for a time following his ordination. See the Vatican Insider story here.

Our Lady Help of Christians, pray for us.

What follows is the Vatican summary of what’s going on:

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Following is the communique released this morning on the episcopal ordination of the Reverend Joseph Yue Fusheng in Harbin and the Reverend Thaddeus Ma Daqin as Auxiliary Bishop of the Diocese of Shanghai.

“With regard to the episcopal ordination of the Reverend Joseph Yue Fusheng, which took place in Harbin (Province of Heilongjiang) on Friday 6 July 2012, the following is stated:

1) The Reverend Joseph Yue Fusheng, ordained without pontifical mandate and hence illicitly, has automatically incurred the sanctions laid down by canon 1382 of the Code of Canon Law. Consequently, the Holy See does not recognize him as Bishop of the Apostolic Administration of Harbin, and he lacks the authority to govern the priests and the Catholic community in the Province of Heilongjiang.

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A voice for the voiceless — women and children in China: Reggie Littlejohn speaks out

Open your mouth for the speechless, in the cause of all who are appointed to die. Open your mouth, judge righteously and plead the cause of the poor and needy” (Proverbs 31:8-9)

Several weeks ago I focused my attention —our attention— on the rights of women and children, especially unborn children, in China, by highlighting the work of Reggie Littlejohn. How can one be unmoved by the plight for another human being; in case, women and unborn children??? What about the preference for the poor? What about human dignity?

When I met Reggie through my friend Suzanne Tanzi, the editor of Traces magazine, I was instantly drawn to her work for others. I recognized in her that Christ is working directly through the words and works for those who really have no voice in a country that forcibly holds a One Child Policy. China is among the most offensive countries when it comes to human rights abuses and our Chinese brothers and sisters need an advocate.
Here’s an amazing interview with Reggie: Open your Mouth –Littlejohn Interview.pdf 
A recently published essay by Reggie Littlejohn: “China: Family Planning Official Stabs Man to Death
The link above will take you another blog post which has links to Reggie Littlejohn’s work.

The Zen of China: things are unwell

Cardinal Joseph Zen.jpgOften he is called the conscience of China, Joseph Cardinal Zen, SDB, 79, visited members of the US government this week. The cardinal has stood against any thinking that doesn’t support life issues –human rights. Zen is the bishop emeritus of Hong Kong. He’s been critical of those who talk without knowing the situation and unable to make crucial distinctions in policy. That is, Zen belives the 2007 letter of the Pope has been wrongly interpreted by members of the Roman Curia. Where the Pope talks about reconciliation of mind and heart, influential members of the Curia talk about a reunification of the two Chinese communities: the open church and the underground church. Reconcilation and renunification are the same thing and ought to be confused for each other. Pope Benedict never talks about reunification. He does talk about reconcilation. The premises are different.

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China’s war on women and girls: one-child policy, forced sterilization, forced abortion & infanticide

On Wednesday I joined my friend Suzanne Tanzi, a
fellow traveler among friends in the lay ecclesial movement, Communion and Liberation, to an in-service billed as 
“Gendercide, Sex Trafficking and Violence Against Women” given in light of the Christian perspective as a way to give an alternate voice to the ideology of the United Nations Commission of the Status of Women. By the Way, Suzanne is also the editor of Traces magazine (you ought to subscribe!!!!).

The presentations were heavy and some of them need refining. The content was stimulating and possibly burdensome for the weak of heart. The truth of the violence against women around the world is devastating. I sat listening mourning the presence of evil actions in our society today. We are never very far from human frailty! On the train ride home last evening I stumbled upon a New York Post article about a Wednesday bust on drug use and mid-afternoon sex acts on a bench dedicated to Katharine Hepburn in the Dag Hammarskjold Plaza on East 47th Street, got me thinking. This presentation was being given at Holy Family Parish a few steps away from these heinous acts! You see, wanton sexual behavior and drug are not very far from us. The human dignity is at being trampled. But hope enlightened the heart
and mind where one would be tempted to despair. I walked way from the afternoon having been received salt and light, thanks in part, from meeting Reggie Littlejohn.

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About the author

Paul A. Zalonski is from New Haven, CT. He is a member of the Fraternity of Communion and Liberation, a Catholic ecclesial movement, and an Oblate of Saint Benedict. Contact Paul at paulzalonski[at]yahoo.com.
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