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Press Release - March 31, 1996

Contact: Joseph Kung
PO Box 8086, Stamford, CT 06905, U.S.A
Tel: 203-329-9712 Fax: 203-329-8415 E-Mail: jmkung@aol.com

No Roman Catholic Mass in Most Parts of China.
Arrests of Two Bishops and a priest.

Stamford, Connecticut, U.S.A. - When Christians around the world attend Easter services on April 7, the Chinese communist government will not allow Roman Catholics in most parts of China to attend Easter Mass to be celebrated by the Roman Catholic clergy. This is another example of the persecution by the Chinese government on the Roman Catholic Church which has been declared "illegal" for more than 40 years. (Easter Mass will be allowed in the communist founded Patriotic Association churches.)

In addition, we also have the following report:

a) Bishop Su Zhimin, Roman Catholic Bishop of the Diocese of Baoding in Hebei Province, was arrested by Chinese government security agents on March 22, 1996. He is now detained in a village about 8-9 kilometers east of Baoding.

Bishop Su offered a private Mass in the presence of Congressman Christopher Smith and his delegation in January 1994. As the result of this meeting, Bishop Su was arrested for nine days subsequent to Congressman Smith's departure from China. Previously, Bishop Su was arrested many times accumulating to more than 23 years in prison for his religious faith.

b) Bishop An Shuxin, Auxiliary Bishop of the Diocese of Baoding, Hebei, disappeared about four weeks ago. He is detained by the Chinese local government.

c) Father Cui XinGang, Pastor of the Church of Our Lady of China in Dong Lu, Hebei, was also arrested by Chinese Government security agents about a week ago and is now detained with Bishop Su together.

More details of this current persecution are recorded in the congressional testimony on Feb 15, 1996 before the subcommittee on International Operations and Human Rights of the House Committee on International Relations of the United States Congress submitted by the President of Cardinal Kung Foundation.

The Cardinal Kung Foundation urges all Christians to remember the Roman Catholic Church in China in their prayers during this Easter Season.