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Vatican Commits a 'No-No,' per Hardline Anti-Communism
John P. Kusumi, China Support Network
5/25/2006

In a very troubling move, the Vatican plans to "divorce" from Taiwan, and switch diplomatic recognition to Communist China, while religious persecution, genocide and forced abortion continue in China

March 28, 2006 (CSN) — News that the Vatican is planning to switch diplomatic recognition — away from free and democratic Taiwan, and in favor of Communist China — is profoundly troubling to leaders of the China Support Network. According to reports, the Vatican is preparing to move its apostolic nunciature — its embassy — from Taipei, Taiwan to Beijing, China.

Communist China was founded officially atheist. The Chinese government now claims that China has freedom of religion, but in fact allows only a limited number of state-approved religious institutions and carefully monitors clergy, doctrine, members, and procedure. Many familiar beliefs and practices may not be permitted; if government authorities feel threatened by the idea of the Second Coming, for example, they will not allow it to be preached. Any worship outside this closely-restricted framework is a target for forcible opposition and cruel persecution.

The treatment of Chinese Catholics has been an example of the deliberate persecution that Communist China reserves for the faithful. Beijing has refused to recognize the Pope as the leader of Catholics, and has run a state-sponsored version — its own version — of the Catholic Church, answering only to officials of the Communist Party. Any "true" Catholics with loyalty to the Vatican have been left to worship in secret, house churches. And, when they are caught, they may be jailed or face worsening fates.

Catholics have been among those caught in a wave of religious persecution, run by the Communists in the past seven years. Also targeted and victimized are Protestants, Tibetan Buddhists, Uighur Muslims, and qi gong practices including Falun Gong and Zhong Gong. (Qi gong should be pronounced 'chee gong' and is a traditional Chinese practice. 'Qi gong' translates literally as "life force cultivation.") Thousands have been killed in the crackdown that has been especially harsh on Falun Gong, and that continues now with Falun Gong prisoners in a death camp, where human organs are harvested out of their bodies (and sold for profit) before prisoners are killed and cremated. See news of the Sujiatun death camp, elsewhere in our news from the China Support Network.

"How do we feel about religious persecution?" asked CSN's Director emeritus John Patrick Kusumi rhetorically. "—We should not punch its ticket. How do we feel about genocide? —We should not punch its ticket. How do we feel about forcible abortions and forced sterilizations that China requires of women under its 'One Child Policy'? —We should not punch its ticket. Now, what is the Vatican doing about this state of affairs? —Incredibly, the Vatican is punching its ticket. World leaders should be resisting, not countenancing, China's state of affairs."

He continued, "[The Vatican] should remember that China represents all of this immoral persecution, and all of the evils of communism, in the eyes of many faiths around the world[...]"

The China Support Network's President, D.J. McGuire, reacted to the news by saying, "To call Archbishop Lajolo's comments troubling would be an understatement. The Holy See, under Pope John Paul II, was instrumental in the victory of faith over fear during the first Cold War. It would be tragic and unseemly for the Vatican to choose fear over faith under John Paul's immediate successor."

At CSN, Executive Director Curry Kenworthy was outspoken as well. "Politically, to support China's Communist tyrants is a mistake," he said. "Morally, it is a sin. It's ironic that there is only one obstacle that the Papacy can't ignore, and that's the Communists refusal to acknowledge the Vatican as authority over Chinese Catholics. Politically, they just don't get it; having the Communist Party as the supreme authority of all Chinese in all ways is the whole point of China's religious policy. Morally, the Vatican is embracing evil, because it is willing to overlook all wrongdoing and only balks at surrendering its own authority," he concluded.

Kusumi added, "To bless a genocidal holocaust of persecution simply does not compute. Furthermore, there is one country on each side of the Taiwan Strait. There is no reason why China's new embassy should come at Taiwan's expense, and indeed, the Catholics of Taiwan have done nothing whatsoever to deserve a gratuitous slap in the face, which this move represents. I hope that the general public can smell a foul deal among the powerful, when one is...in evidence as here in this case. And now, it looks like John Paul II has a successor with a U-turn, in the same way that Ronald Reagan had a successor with a U-turn about communism. This [seems] a low water mark for the tides of faith and freedom. The tentacles of Communist evil should not extend so far as to achieve Vatican buy in!"

Published March 28, 2006 by the China Support Network (CSN). Begun as the American response group in 1989, CSN represents Americans who are "on the side" of the students in Tiananmen Square"—standing for democratic reform, human rights, and freedom in China. For dissident news to support a stronger China policy or get more information, see http://www.chinasupport.net.

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