China urges Vatican to face reality in ordination

By Jiang Jie Source:Global Times Published: 2015-3-13 0:18:02

Beijing on Thursday urged the Vatican to face the historical tradition and reality of Catholics in China, after the Vatican reportedly suggested a joint review on bishop ordination.

"China is always sincere in improving ties with the Vatican and has been making continuing efforts to this end. We are willing to have constructive dialogue with the Vatican … We hope the Vatican can create favorable conditions for the improving of relations," Hong Lei, a spokesperson for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, told the Global Times.

Vatican spokesperson Father Federico Lombardi said in an interview with Phoenix TV recently that the Holy See is willing to reach more consensuses regarding bishop ordination and expects China to consider the communication mode between Vietnam and the Vatican, which refers to a joint review on bishop ordination.

Bishop candidates in Vietnam are first reported to the Vatican, which will consecrate the bishop for the country based on Vietnamese authorities' confirmation, Hong Kongmedia reported Thursday.

Lombardi said that it is not contradictory to be a good Chinese citizen and a good Catholic. He also repeated the pontiff's wish to go to China "tomorrow," while admitting the issue of bishop ordination remained a barrier between the two sides.

China and the Vatican severed diplomatic ties in the 1950s. Bishop ordination is a controversial topic, as China said it has the sole authority to appoint bishops, while the Vatican's stance is that bishops can only be appointed by the Pope.

Posted in: Politics, Diplomacy

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