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By Thomas D. Williams, Ph.D., Bretibart, Sept. 18, 2020

ROME — The U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) has urged the Vatican to highlight religious liberty in its deliberations with China prior to renewing a 2018 deal on the naming of bishops in the country.

“Communist China continues to persecute Chinese Catholics. USCIRF hopes any future deal between the Vatican & China is rooted in the protection of #religiousfreedom,” the Commission wrote on Twitter this week, citing commissioner Gary Bauer.

Both the Vatican and Beijing have signaled a desire to renew their secret 2018 agreement, which conferred on the Chinese Communist Party an unspecified amount of authority in the selection of Catholic bishops in China.

The Vatican Secretary of State, Cardinal Pietro Parolin, told journalists Monday that the common intention of China and the Holy See is to renew the agreement, which is due to expire in October.  …

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