Vatican City (Agenzia Fides) - On Friday, July 9, 2021, at 4.30 pm, His Exc. Mgr. Matthew Cao Xiangde died at the age of 92.
The Prelate, who lived in the province of Zhejiang, was born on September 16, 1929 in Tangzhen, Pudong New Area, in the municipality of Shanghai. In 1950 he entered the "St. Vincent de Paul" regional Seminary in Jiaxing and moved to the Beijing Seminary two years later.
He continued his studies and pastoral practice in Haimen, but he was ordained only in November 1985 by His Exc. Mgr. Luigi Jin Luxian of Shanghai, after the Cultural Revolution. After his priestly ordination, he was able to perform his priestly ministry in Hangzhou cathedral and in the parishes of Xiaoshan and Jinhua.
On June 25, 2000 he was elected and ordained bishop, illegitimate because without papal mandate. Later, he asked for forgiveness. The Prelate asked the Holy See to be legitimated; this was granted on June 8, 2008 but without jurisdiction.
The funeral of Archbishop Cao Xiangde was celebrated on July 12, 2021 with a reduced participation of the faithful due to the pandemic in progress. (Agenzia Fides, 9/8/2021)