About 150 Catholic bishops, priests, nuns and lay leaders are attending a five day workshop from June 20-24, in Beijing conducted by the Chinese central government.
The Chinese central government has begun a five-day workshop run by the State Administration for Religious Affairs (SARA) at a training center in Beijing, which has forced a seminar to commemorate the birth centenary of the late Bishop Aloysius Jin Luxian of Shanghai to be postponed.
With five members picked from each province, about 150 Catholic bishops, priests, nuns and lay leaders are attending the SARA workshop that runs from June 20-24, according to those attending the workshop. They are there to learn the "spirit" of the National Conference of Religious Work held in April.
China observers believe the workshop is a further sign of the party inserting itself into church's affairs after the National Conference of Religious Work's and the SARA's response to an inspection by the party's anti-corruption watchdog, which criticized the administrative body's loose control on national religious groups.
The State Administration for Religious Affairs in China exercises control over religious appointments, the selection of clergy, and the interpretation of religious doctrine. The SARA also works to ensure that the registered religious organizations support and carry out the policy priorities of the Communist Party of China. (UCAN)
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