UCA News Catholic Dioceses in Asia
UCA News Catholic Dioceses in Asia
UCA News Catholic Dioceses in Asia
UCA News

China

Pope receives parish priests from China

Chinese clergy on pilgrimage ask pontiff to visit their country

Jeroom Heyndrickx, Rome

Jeroom Heyndrickx, Rome

Updated: April 29, 2016 11:55 AM GMT
Mission in Asia | Make a Contribution
Mission in Asia | Make a Contribution
Pope receives parish priests from China

Pope Francis meets with the 23 priests from China who were introduced by Father Jeroom Heyndrickx. (Photo courtesy of the Verbiest Institute)

Share this article :
A group of parish priests from China met with Pope Francis in St. Peter's Square at the Vatican on April 27.

Father Jeroom Heyndrickx, a Sinologist, introduced the 23 priests to Pope Francis who was glad to learn they had just completed an exchange course on pastoral issues at the Ferdinand Verbiest Foundation, an institute which is part of the Catholic University of Leuven, in Belgium.

The priests — most of who are from China's north — visited Rome as part of the Holy Year pilgrimage that is currently underway.

Speaking in Spanish, the priests asked the pope to "Please come to visit China."

The pope answered, "Yes, yes, I would like to come."

After meeting the pope, the group met Cardinal Fernando Filoni, prefect of the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples and his secretary Archbishop Savio Hon Tai-Fai who spoke to them of evangelization work in China.

Cardinal Filoni spent 10 years serving the church in China from Hong Kong.

The Chinese priests' pilgrimage began two days earlier when they walked along the Via della Conciliazione in Rome singing hymns and praying the rosary.

All were aware that 40 years ago such a pilgrimage was forbidden and unthinkable for Chinese Catholics.

They also entered through the Holy Door and went to pray at the tomb of St. Peter.

The next morning they celebrated Mass in the crypt of St. Peter and prayed for church unity and that they may obtain the freedom to be good Catholics and also Chinese loving their own country.

The priests also visited Assisi April 28 and a Mass at the catacombs the following day completed their pilgrimage.

They return to China on April 30.

Support UCA News...

As 2020 unfolds, we are asking readers like you to help us keep Union of Catholic Asian News (UCA News) free so it can be accessed from anywhere in the world at no cost.

That has been our policy for years and was made possible by donations from European Catholic funding agencies. However, like the Church in Europe, these agencies are in decline and the immediate and urgent claims on their funds for humanitarian emergencies in Africa and parts of Asia mean there is much less to distribute than there was even a decade ago.

Forty years ago, when UCA News was founded, Asia was a very different place - many poor and underdeveloped countries with large populations to feed, political instability and economies too often poised on the edge of collapse. Today, Asia is the economic engine room of the world and funding agencies quite rightly look to UCA News to do more to fund itself.

UCA News has a unique product developed from a view of the world and the Church through informed Catholic eyes. Our journalistic standards are as high as any in the quality press; our focus is particularly on a fast-growing part of the world - Asia - where, in some countries the Church is growing faster than pastoral resources can respond to - South Korea, Vietnam and India to name just three.

And UCA News has the advantage of having in its ranks local reporters that cover 22 countries and experienced native English-speaking editors to render stories that are informative, informed and perceptive.

We report from the ground where other news services simply can't or won't go. We report the stories of local people and their experiences in a way that Western news outlets simply don't have the resources to reach. And we report on the emerging life of new Churches in old lands where being a Catholic can at times be very dangerous.

With dwindling support from funding partners in Europe and the USA, we need to call on the support of those who benefit from our work.

Click here to find out the ways you can support UCA News. You can make a difference for as little as US$5...
UCAN Donate
UCA Newsletter
YOUR DAILY
NEWSLETTER
Thank you. You are now signed up to our Daily Full Bulletin newsletter

Also Read

UCA News Podcast
UCAN Ad
 
Mission in Asia | Make a Contribution
Mission in Asia | Make a Contribution
Mission in Asia | Make a Contribution