May 13, 2006

TRY THE CATACOMBS, NOT THE PARTY OFFICES:

A Bitter Game: Beijing Battles With Vatican (JIM YARDLEY and KEITH BRADSHER, 5/13/06, NY Times)

From the moment in 1978 when China reopened itself, conditionally, to the outside world, the Roman Catholic Church has been painstakingly working to get back in. Hopes have been raised, then dashed, but this year Rome and Beijing finally seemed close to a historic deal to normalize relations.

Then, unexpectedly, a public spat last week over China's installation of two bishops without the Vatican's approval changed everything. Now, the debate is over how much damage has been done, and why efforts to end 55 years of diplomatic isolation have again gone wrong.

"It is potentially a huge problem," said the Rev. Jeroom Heyndrickx, a Belgian priest who has acted as an emissary between the sides. "It's a confrontation. There was an informal dialogue going on. This has been cut off now. The question is, can we go on from here?"


Hopefully not.

Posted by Orrin Judd at May 13, 2006 9:41 AM
Comments

Did anyone else at first read the Belgian priest's name as Jimi Hendrix?

Posted by: Dave W at May 14, 2006 12:18 AM
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