July 4, 2012. (Romereports.com)
The Vatican has sent an urgent note to the Chinese diocese of Harbin in hopes of avoiding a looming episcopal ordination without papal approval.
In the note, the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples clearly states that the appointment of bishops can come only from the pope and it's an issue of “religion and not politics”.
It also warns that this episcopal ordination without the permission of Rome will cause “strong disunity in the Catholic community in China”.
The Catholic Church in China is divided between the Patriotic Church, which is controlled by the government and appoints bishops that are loyal to the party system, and then there is the underground Church, which is faithful to Rome, but is not able to practice their faith openly.