- Oct 29, 2020
Two storylines are fighting it out to dominate Vatican coverage, and so far it’s no contest: A media frenzy over a few seconds of papal verbiage on civil unions has overwhelmed the Vatican and China renewing their deal on the appointment of bishops for another two years.
No matter what a leader actually says or does, if he or she allows an impression to be created and doesn’t publicly disown it, then it belongs to them.
Amid a chorus of criticism, the Vatican announced Thursday the highly-anticipated renewal of its provisional agreement with China on the appointment of bishops meaning that for the next two years, the door is still open to possible diplomatic ties.
To call a public blast by one cardinal against another “rare” is to traffic in understatement. To find any sort of precedent we have to go back a decade, and a public conflict between Cardinal Christoph Schönborn of Vienna, Austria, and Italian Cardinal Angelo Sodano.
“Parolin knows he himself is lying. He knows that I know he is a liar. He knows that I will tell everyone that he is a liar,” wrote Cardinal Joseph Zen, a former bishop of Hong Kong and a longtime critic of appeasement when it comes to China’s Communist authorities.
With the Vatican expected to renew its provisional agreement with China on the appointment of bishops later this month, Taiwan has been conspicuously silent from the conversation.