Retired Bishop Liu Jinghe of Tangshan (Hebei), northern China, died in the evening of Dec. 11, shortly before he turned 93.
The funeral of
Bishop Liu will take place on Dec. 17.
Legitimized by Pope Benedict XVI in recent
years, Bishop Liu refused to take part in the illicit ordination of Guo Jincai
in Chengde on Nov. 20, 2010.
Bishop Liu "refused adamantly" though pressured by
the Chinese authorities in that case, a source from Hebei recalled.
Since November 17, 2010 onwards, he
retired. His successor Bishop Fang Jianping has been managing the diocese of Tangshan since 2008.
Born in a Catholic family on Dec. 30, 1920 in Tangshan,
Liu entered a minor seminary at the age of 11. In 1945, in Beijing, Bishop Paul Leon Cornelius Montaigne
ordained him a priest.
Then, Father Liu returned to his own diocese and served
at Lulong and Tangshan
In 1981, he was ordained the bishop of Tangshan without papal
mandate. In 1984, he was a founder of the Hebei Seminary. He had been rector of
the seminary for years.
According to a blog of Father Peng Jiandao
in Hebei, China (http://blog.sina.com.cn/s/blog_500cf6040102elfn.html),
as early as in 1946, Father Liu Jinghe was jailed in Lulong and was released in
On Nov. 13, 1954, Father Liu was jailed again until December 1956.
He was released from the Tangshan
Between 1966 and 1969, he was jailed for the third time. From
1970 to 1979, he was under reform-through-labor in Tangshan areas, working in a textile factory,
a quarry and chemical factory.
On the other hand, Bishop Liu was once a "strongman"
of the Patriotic Association and bishops' council at national level and in Hebei province.
According to a statement at the website of Patriotic Association (www.chinacatholic.cn), Bishop Liu was a
vice president of fifth Chinese Catholic Patriotic Association (1992-1998) and
a vice president of the bishops' council (1998-2004). He held related positions
was a member of the 6th, 7th, 8th and 9th
Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference at national level