If Pope Francis and Chinese leaders sign off on the proposed deal, the pope would accept eight bishops ordained by the Chinese government without the Vatican’s permission.
It would be a diplomatic breakthrough for the pope, who has eagerly pursued an opening to China that eluded his predecessors, though re-establishment of diplomatic relations between China and the Vatican—which Beijing severed in 1951—would remain a distant goal.
Vatican officials, however, are bracing for strong protests from Chinese Catholics in the so-called underground church, some of whose members have suffered imprisonment or other punishment for defying government control of the church, and who could regard the agreement as a lopsided win for Beijing and hence a betrayal of their fidelity.
The deal would defer many thorny issues, including the legal status of underground Chinese bishops loyal to Rome, who currently operate without government approval.
Sunday, October 30, 2016
"Vatican, China Consider Deal on Selection of Bishops After Decades of Division"