Sino-Vatican Relations: Problems in Conflicting Authority, 1976-1986

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How can the contemporary claims of communism and national culture be reconciled with a universal religion? How can the government of the People's Republic of China with its claim to absolute sovereignty exist alongside the spiritual authority of the Roman Catholic church? This conflict between two centres of authority has been at the core of recent relations between the Catholic church and China. In this first book-length study of the subject, Dr. Beatrice Leung analyses the interactions between China and the Holy See from 1976 to 1986. Dr. Leung examines the historic relationship between the Catholic church and China both prior to 1949 and from 1949 to 1976. She then analyses the major problems between these two institutions as they tried to establish a dialogue for future reconciliation. These include the need for the Vatican to transfer its recognition of China from Taipei to Beijing; the role of the Pope with his spiritual leadership of Chinese Catholics; and the handling of the Chinese Catholic Patriotic Association. The book concludes with suggestions for a basis for church-state rapprochement. Throughout her work, Dr. Leung uses Chinese language sources, both on the Catholic and Communist sides. These are supplemented by a wide range of interviews which the author has conducted in the Vatican, in Hong Kong and with members of the official and unofficial Catholic churches inside China itself.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"...[a] thoroughly researched study of Sino-Vatican relations....I recommend this book for research collections and those interested in twentieth-century Chinese-Western religious history." Church History

"This is a very important book because Beatrice Leung here provides the only comprehensive account of Sino-Vatican relatons in the English language." John Pollard, Times Higher Education Supplement

"This is a valuable study that combines detailed research with careful analysis. Dr. Leung's thoughtful discussion of the various models that could serve as a possible basis for Sino-Vatican negotiations is particularly stimulating. Her book is an important contribution to our understanding of Sino-Vatican relations and the broader issues of church and state in China." The Catholic Historical Review

"[Leung] makes many contributions to academic understanding in her explication of the China-and-Catholicism case....Leung's book also provides a new angle of interpretation on the Vatican's diplomatic strategy of Ostpolitik...." Michael L. Budde, Critical Review

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Product Details

Table of Contents

List of illustrations
1 Introduction 1
2 The cultural encounter of China and Catholicism, 1552-1949 15
Return of the foreign missionaries in the nineteenth century 30
The response from the Catholic church 42
3 The Vatican's Ostpolitik 48
4 The CCP and the Catholic church before and after 1949 73
Encounters before 1949 73
5 The religious policy of China in the modernisation era 104
New development in the new era 105
Religion in China after Mao 116
Reasons for the greater tolerance in religious policy 133
6 Constraints on the freedom of the Catholic religion 140
Constraints 141
Church and state relations as viewed by China 161
Moving towards reconciliation 174
Conclusions 182
7 Sino-Vatican relations in the modernisation era 189
The Vatican's overtures for rapprochement 192
Taiwan: the bridge to Sino-Vatican rapprochement 231
The political bridge: Hong Kong 238
8 Negotiations and concerns 257
Common concerns 257
Church and state reconciliation 267
China's domestic concerns 270
The Vatican's major concerns 273
Negotiations 275
9 Conclusions 288
Postscript 302
Chinese political and social life between 1987 and 1989 306
Rapid development of the Chinese Catholic church 310
Sino-Vatican relations 321
Hong Kong, the bridge-church, after the massacre in Beijing 337
App. I: Letter from a Catholic in Qinghai 346
App. II: The English translation of 'Document 19', issued by the CCP central committee in 1982 348
App. III: An open letter to the Clergy and Laity 368
App. IV: The Vatican's eight-point directive on dealings with China 373
App. V: The English translation of 'Document 3', 1989 376
Bibliography 384
Index 400
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