ASIA/CHINA - Xian Xian diocese regains possession of Jesuit missionaries’ tombstones

Monday, 21 March 2005

Xian Xian (Fides Service) - According to the web site of the Catholic diocese of Xian Xian (also known as CangZhou), after lengthy negotiations the local Catholic community has at last regained possession of about 40 tombstones erected in memory of Jesuits missionaries. The tombstones, lost during the Cultural Revolution, were discovered in various private building enterprises. Now the renovated tombstones have been arranged in a place suitable to their great religious and cultural value.
Xian Xian diocese, formerly Vicariate Apostolic of south east Tcheli, has 75,000 Catholics, 206 churches and chapels and just under 100 priests. Many local priests and Sisters have been able to study abroad thanks to help from the universal Catholic Church. Every year this local Church welcomes an average of 100 new members usually baptised at Easter.
(Agenzia Fides 21/03/2005 Righe: 16 Parole: 146)