Bishop of Changzi dies at 90

HONG KONG (UCAN): Bishop Andrew Jin Daoyuan the former bishop of Changzhi, in Shanxi province, died during the evening of November 20 due to complications related to old age. He was 90-years-old.

His funeral was scheduled to take place at the Immaculate Conception Church in Nantiangong village on November 26, with 57-year-old  Bishop Peter Din Lingbin, celebrating. The late bishop’s body was to be buried at Nantiangong where he spent his later years.

A source, who requested anonymity said that Bishop Jin was “self-elected, self-ordained” without papal approval on 6 January 2000 in Beijing. He was recognised by Pope Benedict XVI in 2008 as a bishop with “legitimacy but without jurisdiction.” However, the Chinese government recognised him as the bishop of Changzhi.

Bishop Jin was ordained a priest by the Chinese Catholic Patriotic Association (CCPA) in 1956, but was made to become a farmer during the years of the Cultural Revolution. The diocese’s obituary for the bishop said that during this period, the “bishop had to undergo re-education for over 10 years.”

Sometime after the Cultural Revolution he resumed his priesthood within the framework of the CCPA and returned to Nantiangong Church and the Diocese of Changzhi.

In a 2016 article, Bishop Jin touched on the death of his parents and what he described as a “wandering career” where he had, at one stage, nothing but his beliefs. “It was the members of the Nantiangong Church who accepted me. The members of the Diocese of Changzhi accepted me.”

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In 2016, Pope Francis named Bishop Din the bishop of Changzhi but Bishop Jin did not preside over his ordination Mass as Chinese government only recognised Bishop Din as coadjutor bishop.

The source said that Bishop Jin suffered much during his lifetime. “He carried a lot of burdens,” the source said.

Changzhi has 53 priests, about 50 nuns and nearly 60,000 Catholics.

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