Is the Pope a dope, or just a pragmatist?
“Pope Francis on Tuesday defended a landmark deal between the Vatican and China on the appointment of bishops, saying he, and not the Beijing government, will have the final say on who is named,” reports Reuters.
- He told reporters on the plane returning from a trip to the Baltics “that while he realizes not everyone will understand the logic behind the agreement, he was confident in the ‘great faith’ of Chinese Catholics.”
- “‘It’s not [that the government] names them. It is a dialogue. But the pope will appoint them. Let that be clear,’ he said of the deal, which was more than 10 years in the making.”
- In other news about Christians, Beijing authorities who shut down the Zion Christian church after its pastor criticized new curbs on religion have now ordered it to pay 1.2 million yuan (US$170,000) in back rent and removal costs, according to Agence France-Presse.
- ChinaFile has an interesting debate on whether the Vatican should compromise with China.
- Pope asks China to show ‘trust, courage and farsightedness’ in new relationship / Reuters
- China says sincere in wanting to keep improving Vatican ties / Reuters
- Pope Francis asks Chinese Catholics to trust his deal with government / NYT (porous paywall)
- Vatican and China reach deal on appointing bishops / China Digital Times
- Pope Francis admits his historic deal with Beijing will cause suffering in China’s ‘underground’ churches / Time