China    YOUNG PRIEST ORDAINED BISHOP OF CANGZHOU
A young priest just ordained bishop of Cangzhou (Xianxian), a diocese in the government-approved 'open' Church in Hebei province with many Catholics and vocations, has expressed his desire to raise the standard of clerics and nuns in the diocese.
   The 38 year old bishop told UCA News that upgrading the standards of clergy and nuns, particularly on Church teaching, social and cultural education, as one of his goals. He said these standards should be improved not only through overseas studies but also through formation courses in China and formal training in secular universities to meet the needs of the time.
   Bishop Li Lingui was rector of the Hebei provincial seminary. His ordination last Monday was most probably the first such event in the government-approved open Church in China since the controversial 6 January ordination of six bishops in Beijing, seen by some as a direct challenge to the Vatican.
   Bishop Li, 38, told UCA News that he was aware of the Beijing event, but that his diocese, with an estimated 140,000 Catholics, urgently needed a bishop. His predecessor, Bishop Hou Jingwen, died in a motor accident last October
   
UCAN
26/3/00

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