1985-01-30 00:00:00

Fathers Li Side, 76, and Jin Luxian, 67, were ordained as auxiliary bishops of Shanghai Jan. 27 in Xujiahui cathedral. Bishop Li is vicar general of Shanghai diocese and Bishop Jin is rector of the Sheshan seminary and a theologian who once studied under the late Father Karl Rahner. Ordained as a Jesuit, Bishop Jin, who signs his name using "S.J.," received a doctorate in theology from Gregorian University in Rome in 1949, and speaks several languages, including French, English and Italian.

Both met Cardinal Jaime Sin of Manila and other Asian bishops during their visits to Shanghai in 1984. The two bishops were nominated by the Shanghai bishop and elected Dec. 7 by the Administrative Commission of the Catholic Church of Shanghai. They are the first two auxiliaries ordained by the Chinese Church since relations with the Vatican were severed nearly 30 years ago.

Over 2,000 Catholics attended the ceremony, including about 100 from other parts of China. About 18 were bishops, including Bishop Yang Gaojian, secretary general of the Chinese Bishops Conference; Bishop Fu Tieshan of Peking (Beijing) and Bishop Ye Yinyun of Canton (Guangzhou). The principal ordaining prelate was Bishop Zong Huaide, chairman of the Chinese Catholic Patriotic Association (CPA). Assisting him were Bishops Quian Huimin of Nanking and Dong Guangqing of Hankou, one of the first two bishops selected and consecrated without Vatican approval in 1958. The 92-year-old CPA-appointed Bishop Zhang Jiashu of Shanghai, president of the Chinese Bishops Conference, presided over the ceremony from his throne in the sanctuary.

Government officials also attended, including Ms. Cao Jingru, vice director of the national office of the Bureau of Religious Affairs; Mr. Zhang Yaozhong, head of the United Front Department of Shanghai City; and Mr. Yang Zengnian, director of the Shanghai office of the Bureau of Religious Affairs.

When the procession of ordinandi and consecrators entered the Xujiahui church at 1 p.m. sharp, the 2,000-strong congregation, including 95 Sheshan seminarians, stood and intoned the hymn "Ecce Sacerdos Magnus." The ceremony lasted 2.5 hours and was carried out with precision and solemnity. It was in Latin, except for the examination and vows, which were in Chinese.

After the ceremony, a photograph of the newly consecrated and 20 other bishops was taken on the steps of the Xujiahui church. The Administrative Commission of the Catholic Church of Shanghai and the Catholic Patriotic Association of Shanghai then invited guests to a banquet at Heng Shan hotel. Other activities in honor of the new bishops included a trip Jan. 28 to Sheshan seminary, 25 km from Shanghai, for religious from other parts of China who attended the ceremony, and a banquet at the Shanghai hotel Jan. 29, hosted by the Bureau of Religious Affairs of Shanghai.

The ordinary of Shanghai, Bishop Gong Pinmei, has been imprisoned for nearly 30 years, having been arrested in September, 1955 and convicted in March, 1960 on charges of counter-revolutionary activity and sentenced to life imprisonment.


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