Analisis Digital, the news agency of the Archdiocese of Madrid, is reporting this week that an unprecedented symposium on the social teachings of the Catholic Church has taken place in the Chinese capital of Peking.
According to the news service, the symposium was organized by the Social Academy of China and the Bishops’ Conference of Germany. The event was billed by the Chinese as a sort of “ecumenism” between Catholicism and the ideals of the communist revolution.
Some of the issues discussed included the social services offered by the Christian Churches, emphasizing that despite official state propaganda, “poverty is wreaking havoc in China.”
According to Analisis Digital, this situation has led the Chinese government to consider the possibility of “authorizing the entry of Catholic missionaries into the country to work with the poor,” given the Church’s vast experience in this field and the fact that missionaries carry out their work with everyone regardless of creed or nationality.
Another issue that was discussed was “the relationship between religion and society,” which revealed “the disparity of opinions” due to the government’s refusal to recognize religious freedom. This policy has led to an “undetermined number of Catholics” being imprisoned for practicing their faith in communion with the Holy See rather than under the control of the Patriotic church.
According to the director of the Institute for the Study of Religion and the Institute for the Study of Christianity, Zhuo Xin Ping, the symposium “has helped show more clearly the ties that exist between Catholic social teaching and (official) social service with concrete examples and testimonies.”