Chinese bishop arrested as tension with Vatican grows

By Carey Lodge for Christian Today

A Chinese bishop has been arrested by police and removed from his diocese in a city with a thriving Christian population.

Bishop Peter Shao Zhumin, coadjutor bishop of Wenzhou, was detained by authorities last week.

According to Asia News, which is affiliated with the Catholic Church, the bishop was set to take over from Bishop Vincent Zhu Weifang, who died from cancer on Wedneday.

The Chinese authorities do not recognise Bishop Shao's leadership because he is not part of the government's state-approved Catholic body, and was instead appointed by the Vatican.

Relations have historically been strained between the Catholic Church and China's ruling Communist party over irreconcilable claims to authority. The Vatican does not accept the validity of episcopal consecrations by the Chinese Catholic Patriotic Association, and an underground Catholic Church refuses to compromise with the state and is loyal only to the Pope.

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