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Serious Question: Does China Have ‘Leverage’ Against A Disgraced Ex-Cardinal?

An American security panel is forcing a Chinese corporation to sell its ownership of a gay hook-up site… over blackmail concerns.

The Chinese government has a well-established history of using compromising information as leverage to get something they want. And a gay hook-up app would give them all sorts of salacious information that people would rather keep secret.

Dating histories, locations, conversations, HIV status and all kinds of other very personal information could be in the hands of Chinese operatives.

And China isn’t shy about pressing such opportunities to their own advantage. A pretty Chines spy caught a French pharmaceutical researcher in a ‘honey trap’ and found he was quite willing to give China what they wanted in exchange for the footage the spy took of their tryst in a hotel room staying secret.

What could any of that possibly have to do with the Vatican?

Ideally — it would have nothing to do with the Vatican.

But we do not live in ‘ideal’ times. Meet Theodore McCarrick.

Over the span of 20 years, former cardinal Theodore McCarrick traveled to China on at least eight occasions, sometimes staying in a state-controlled Beijing seminary. McCarrick was the unofficial bridge between the Vatican and the communist Chinese government.

Prior to being laicized due to pressure from outside public reports of sexual abuse of seminarians and children, former cardinal McCarrick had been a leader in the deal between Chinese president Xi Jinping and the Church under Pope Francis, according to Chinese reports as well as American reports.

McCarrick said in 2016, “I see a lot of things happening that would really open many doors because President Xi and his government are concerned about things that Pope Francis is concerned about.” McCarrick also said the similarities between Pope Francis and Xi Jinping could be “a special gift for the world.”

The question being asked is: could China be leveraging his past against him to gain an advantage with the Church of Rome?

It would go a long way to explaining the shocking compromise deal that looked like the Pope ‘giving away the store’ to Chinese demands for Communist Party control of clerical appointments within China.

Here’s the optimistic view from the Vatican:

Critics of an agreement signed between the Vatican and the Chinese government must be patient and not quick to judge a deal that is meant to protect religious freedom, the Vatican secretary of state said.

After addressing a symposium on religious freedom April 3, Cardinal Pietro Parolin told journalists that the agreement was signed “to advance religious freedom in the sense of finding (some) normalization for the Catholic community” as well as other religious minorities.

“Our hope is that it will help, not limit, religious freedom. But we should be patient,” he said, “I know that people want things immediately.”

…The cardinal’s comments came amid recent criticism by a U.S. official regarding the “provisional agreement” on the appointment of bishops signed by representatives of the Vatican and the Chinese government in mid-September. — NCR

Here’s the ‘rest of the story’ from a Canadian critic who has served as an Ambassador to China (notice whose name pops up again in these three short paragraphs:

It hasn’t helped that the negotiations have been accompanied by a succession of foolish statements from senior Vatican officials. Admittedly, star-struck visitors to Beijing often see the China they want to see, ignoring the far messier reality, but the Vatican team has taken this to new depths. An Italian archbishop suggested that China – widely condemned for its human rights abuses – represents the most authentic vision of Catholic social teaching. Disgraced ex-cardinal Theodore McCarrick – once something of a Vatican envoy to China, and now, in the wake of allegations of sexual abuse of seminarians, living in enforced retirement – spoke glowingly of the similarities between Francis and China’s strongman president Xi Jinping.

But Mr. Xi, who is waging an unrelenting campaign against religious belief and believers, is at the heart of what worries many Catholics and many China watchers about the agreement. State oppression is most ferocious in the country’s far west, where an estimated one-million Muslim Uyghurs have been exiled to re-education camps.

But Christians are also suffering. Under the guise of “sinicizing” Christianity, or making it more Chinese, officials are demolishing churches, stepping up surveillance and censorship, and banning children from services.
Source: GlobeAndMail

A disgraced ex-cardinal turned full on Chinese fanboy.

It could be ‘nothing’.

Or it could be…

A 2007 article in The Atlantic described the close friendship between McCarrick and the communist “Church” and how McCarrick claimed to have relayed messages from the Chinese government-appointed bishop to the pope in the 1990s.

The Chinese communists have a track record that demonstrates they would have pressured through blackmail a compromised McCarrick, with his history of sexually abusing seminarians, into revealing secrets McCarrick knew about the Vatican and his fellow cardinals, bishops and priests. The communist Chinese government would have an interest in using this information for further blackmail purposes on the Vatican.

The Chinese government has increased its persecution of all Christian churches in the last months. The communist government is destroying crosses, burning Bibles, closing churches, and forcing Christians to sign papers renouncing their faith.
Source: LifeSite

The sooner the church deals with and roots out the corruption and scandal in their midst, the better we all will be for it.

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Wes Walker

Wes Walker is the author of "Blueprint For a Government that Doesn't Suck". He has been lighting up since its inception in July of 2012. Follow on twitter: @Republicanuck