Bishop Aloysius Jin Luxian of Shanghai
At age 96 Bishop Aloysius Jin Luxian of Shanghai, died on Saturday, April 27, following a long struggle against pancreatic cancer.
Father Fang of the Sacred Heart of Jesus Catholic Church in Shanghai notes: "In 96 years, Bishop Jin never stopped to be fighting for living out his Christian faith and for being a good shepherd until breathing out his last breath. Now he deserves to being with God and rest in eternal peace. I believe that he will continue to protect us and Shanghai Diocese, which is in the most difficult time ever. Please offer your sincere prayer for our Bishop Jin and Shanghai Diocese.”
Born in 1916 in Shanghai, Bishop Jin was ordained a priest in 1945. After two years of pastoral work, he was sent to Rome to pursue theological studies. There he obtained a doctorate in theology at the Pontifical Gregorian University in 1950 and returned to China.
In 1951, he simultaneously became rector of the Shanghai Diocesan Seminary, the Jesuit’s vice-superior in Shanghai and was designated as the Jesuit Visitor for China, with delegated powers of the superior-general in Rome. He was however, taken into detention in 1955 and released 18 years later.
During the ‘80s, he made the decision to cooperate with the Chinese government. According to Catholic News.com, Jesuit Father Michael Kelly, executive director of the Asian Catholic news agency UCA News, said of his fellow Jesuit: "From the 1980s, much to the suspicion of some, the condemnation of others but the amazement of most, Jin walked the thin line between recognizing the authority of the government while sticking to what he believed was most basic and important to Catholicism in China."
In 1982 he served as rector of the renamed Sheshan Seminary and played a leading role in the Church in China, and the rebuilding of China’s biggest diocese – Shanghai. In 1984, he re-established Guang Qi Research Center for academic research and publication. It has published Chinese-language Bibles, missals, theological and scholarly studies, hymnals and the universal catechism for Catholics throughout China.
He became bishop of Shanghai in 1989 and the Vatican later recognized Bishop Jin as coadjutor bishop of Shanghai in 2004. Bishop Jin was a friend to numerous international political and religious leaders. He was also one of the four Mainland Chinese bishops invited by Pope Benedict XVI to attend the world bishop synod in 2005. He was named an honorary president of the government-sanctioned Catholic Patriotic Association and the Chinese bishops' conference at the National Congress of Catholic Representatives, held in late 2010.
Though his health had deteriorated since Christmas, his name was among the nine Catholic representatives of the 12th National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference, the top advisory body to the Beijing government. More than 1,000 people attended a funeral Mass for Bishop Jin on April 29. A government-organized memorial service was held on May 2.
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