Thursday, May 22, 2008

An Extraordinary Icon

Chiesa: "Olympics of the Faith: China Disqualifies the Virgin of Sheshan," by Sandro Magister

Pilgrimages banned to the most important Chinese Marian shrine – on the day of prayer established by the pope. A book by the sinologist Bernardo Cervellera lays bare the contradictions of the regime, on the eve of the Olympic Games in Beijing.

During this month of May, in two days, the first of the annual days of prayer for the Church in China will be held, established by Benedict XVI in his letter to Chinese Catholics one year ago.

Traditionally, each May 24, thousands of Catholics from all over China go on pilgrimage to the shrine of Sheshan, dedicated to Mary "help of Christians," located on a lush green hill 30 miles south of Shanghai (see photo in Chiesa site).

Heavier attendance had been expected for the celebration this year, of at least 200 thousand faithful. But it's not to be. And not only because of the terrifying earthquake that in recent days has made countless victims in Sichuan and has created difficulties all over the country.

The main obstacles to the pilgrimage have been deliberately set up by the Chinese authorities, and in particular by the Patriotic Association that regulates religious life. (...) >>>

- Caption: "Our Lady of China" - Hat Tip: In Defense of the Cross -

- Filed on Articles in "China Chill" -

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