MINDONG, China, April 11, 2017— Mgr. Vincenzo Guo Xijin, underground bishop of the diocese has been missing for four days after he presented the Office for Religious Affairs Fuan April 6. Mons. Guo, despite being a bishop not recognized by the government, is the ordinary shepherd of the diocese, confirmed after the death of his predecessor, Msgr. Huang Shoucheng, which took place on July 30 .
At the concerns of Catholics who do not know where their leaders replied the chief of Public Security of Ningde, who informed them saying that their bishop “needs to study and learn,” and why is seized for 20 days.
The restlessness of the faithful remains: first, because this means that the bishop will celebrate all the rituals of Holy Week and Easter. But they are worried much more because the Public Safety does not say the place where the bishop would be “studying” and allow everyone to be able to contact.
The most common cases in the diocese has a bishop must be subjected to brainwashing to get from him the registration and submission to the Patriotic Association (PA).
The Diocese of Mindong is almost entirely made up of faithful of the underground Church: about 90,000 Catholics, more than 80,000 are illegal, very organized and alive with more than 45 priests, more than 200 nuns, more than 300 lay consecrated and hundreds of lay catechists. Underground bishop accepted and is on good terms with all the faithful, even those officers. The thing is a blow to the Patriotic Association (PA), even more so because the Holy See, after the death of Msgr. Huang, confirmed the succession to Mgr. Guo as ordinary bishop.
According to some priests of the diocese, the Rev is raising the level of confrontation with the underground community. Two years ago in Fuan police demolished an unofficial church under construction. Until now, given the large size of the underground community, law enforcement had always left to live without too many problems.
“It is impossible – says the priest – that the bishop agrees to subscribe to the PA. No one ever will. ” The fear of the faithful is that in this way the bishop can not return to lead the diocese. For this the Mindong Catholics ask all Christians to pray for Msgr. Guo.
Mons. Vincenzo Guo Xijin, 59, was ordained coadjutor bishop of Mindong on December 28, 2008. Ordained a priest in 1984, he worked as a teacher in seminars and as an economic administrator of the diocese. But his most important work was to sustain and grow the religious male and female vocations to the priesthood. He also urged his young seminarians to undertake university studies in government colleges. As unofficial priest has been arrested in 1990-’92; in 1993-’94; 1996.
In the late ’90s he was also nominated for a short time apostolic administrator of the diocese of Wenzhou. (AsiaNews)