Thursday, March 23, 2006

Hundreds of Chinese to attend consistory

The Web site of the Union of Catholic Asian News has posted this article about the large delegation of Chinese both from around the world and from mainland China itself that is descending on Rome for the consistory at which Bishop Joseph Zen Ze-kiun of Hong Kong will become the second cardinal to lead that diocese.


The size of the Hong Kong delegation, now 141 persons, is six times larger than that of Cardinal Wu in 1988. About 20 Catholics went on the occasion.

Vicar General Father Dominic Chan Chi-ming of Hong Kong, who leads the Hong Kong group, told UCA News that the difference is partly because Cardinal Wu preferred a low-profile celebration and discouraged a big delegation.

Father Chan explained that Cardinal-elect Zen is "more of a high profile image," and that he accepted a proposal by the diocesan curia to organize the delegation so as to express the support of Hong Kong Catholics and to show the participation of the local Church in the universal Church event.

High profile indeed. It will be interesting to see in the coming months how the dynamics of the relationship between Cardinal-elect Zen and the Beijing government will play out. He has been an outspoken critic of it in the past.

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