by Karen Faulkner, Worthy News Correspondent
(Worthy News) – Chinese authorities are continuing to persecute Catholic clergy that are not approved by the state: on April 7 police seized Bishop Shao Zhumin of Zhejiang and took him to an undisclosed location, International Christian Concern (ICC) reports. To date, the Chinese government has seized over 10 Catholic leaders, including two in January, and their whereabouts are still not known.
Bishop Shao Zhumin has been repeatedly detained over the years and was once kept in captivity for seven months, ICC said. In addition to detaining him, Chinese authorities have sought to brainwash Zhumin by subjecting him to a “thought transformation” process that lasts from 10 to 15 days: Zhumin is considered a threat to Chinese authorities because he refuses to join the government-approved “official” Catholic Church.
Since police took him away last week, the bishop’s parishioners have said they believe the authorities wanted to prevent him from holding services during Holy Week before Easter, ICC said. The police have taken the bishop’s phone and he is incommunicado, wherever he is.
“Despite the inkling of a Sino-Vatican deal on bishop appointment in 2018 and a renewal in 2020, Catholic clergy in China who pledge their allegiance to the Vatican continue to face harassment and enforced disappearance,” ICC said in its report.
China ranks 17th on the US Open Doors Watch List 2022 of the top 50 countries where Christians are persecuted.
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