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Once finalized, it would give the pope ultimate authority in the selection of China’s Catholic bishops, an essential step toward creating a unified Catholic Church recognized by both the Vatican and the Chinese government .Details are still to be worked out, and lingering disagreements—the two sides haven’t reached consensus over the church’s right to establish schools, proselytize or own property in China—but Tong argued that these differences should not prevent the rapprochement.
For Francis, who has been rehabilitating the church’s image around the world, an alliance with Xi could allow them to fight world poverty and climate change together, at a time when the pope’s relationship with U. The Vatican is the only Western state that doesn’t have diplomatic ties with China.
Some Catholics familiar with the pope’s interest in China say it has nothing to do with conversion, which would be unpopular with the Chinese.
They say the pontiff is interested in how diplomacy with China can help him tackle problems like poverty, climate change and the crisis in Syria.
In China they can worship freely.”The next month, the Vatican faced further criticism for its softening stance toward China when it invited professor Huang Jiefu, a highly regarded former Chinese vice minister of health, to speak at the Vatican’s organ-trafficking conference, a decision ethicists criticized, citing China’s practice of harvesting organs from executed prisoners.
Experts say there are many reasons the pope has pursued China so doggedly.