Jan 5, 2010 / 21:38 pm
Underground Catholic Bishop Leon Yao Liang died on Dec. 30, 2009 at the age of 87. An advocacy group for Chinese Catholics says authorities have tightly controlled news of his death and also reports that three underground priests have gone missing.
Bishop Yao, the auxiliary bishop of Xiwanzi in Hebei Province, was born in 1923 and ordained a priest in 1946, the Cardinal Kung Foundation reports. He served as an assistant pastor at various churches but was restricted to the region of Xiwanzi by the Communist regime in the early 1950s.
At the time he earned his livelihood from vegetable farming and from selling firewood.
He was forced to enter a labor camp in 1956 and in 1958 he was sentenced to life imprisonment for being in communion with the Pope and the universal Catholic Church.