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The Christian Church as a Civil Society Organization: A Preliminary Survey of Mainland China, Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan

作者:Zhidong Hao   来源:中美印象  已有 7365人浏览 字体放大  字体缩小

The Christian Church as a Civil Society Organization:
A Preliminary Survey of Mainland China, Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan[1]
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During the period of opening and reform XE "reform"  in mainland China, the role of religion in sociopolitical and economic XE "economic"  development has become increasingly important. It is true that because of sociopolitical constraints, it will take a while for religion on the mainland to catch up with Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan in influence, and different religions in different places also have different influences. But religions in mainland China are generally catching up anyway, albeit slowly in most aspects of their influence, and a study of the similarities and differences in the role of religion in the four regions of Greater China (in its cultural and historical sense) is also more important than ever before.

As part of that effort, this paper compares the Christian Church, both Catholic and Protestant, in the four regions of Greater China to see the extent to which it is a civil society XE "civil society"  organization XE "civil society organization" \t "See CSO"  (CSO XE "CSO" \t "See Civil Society Organization" ) as well as what roles it plays. In my view, the Christian Church is indeed a CSO XE "CSO" , but because of different sociopolitical situations, the extent to which the Church can play its usual role, and the ways in which this role is played, differs across regions. Understandably, the Church faces many more difficulties in serving as a CSO on the mainland XE "CSO"  than in other places, especially in the Xi Jinping XE "Xi Jinping"  era with frequent crackdowns,[2] and thus is weaker XE "CSO" . All things considered, as a CSO, the Christian Church appears to be the strongest in Hong Kong, XE "CSO"  followed by Taiwan and Macau, with mainland China trailing behind.

I support my view using some indicators from the Civil Society Index XE "Civil Society Index" \t "See CSI"  (CSI XE "CSI" ) developed by CIVICUS XE "CIVICUS" , “an international alliance dedicated to strengthening citizen action and civil society XE "civil society"  throughout the world,” with 1,000 members. The index measures the strengths, challenges, potential, and needs of civil society in a country. [3] I use this index to measure the Christian Church in each of the regions or regime types in Greater China.

The CSI XE "CSI"  is designed to work across regime types and therefore is especially useful for our analysis. As I illustrate further below, since 1949 the mainland Chinese state has incorporated a majority of the Christian groups in the form of national religious associations while alienating others, which evolved later into what we now call “underground XE "underground" ” or “house” churches. So, the church-state relationship in mainland China is largely corporatist XE "corporatist"  in nature, with non-official churches repeatedly suppressed. In Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan, the Christian churches have largely remained independent, although at one time or another, those in the latter two regions were corporatist to a great extent because of their colonial XE "colonial"  and political legacies. My analysis in this paper reflects these founding moments of the church in each regime type and their continued variations in autonomy XE "autonomy" . Given the spreading influence of the Chinese Communist Party XE "Chinese Communist Party" \t "See CCP"  (CCP) in these other places, one wonders whether their autonomy might erode. A CSI analysis will also help us see that trend more clearly.

In terms of methodology XE "methodology" , my research is inherently critical, that is, historical-comparative, because I examine various structural and cultural factors in influencing the Church’s behavior across regions and over time. But I also employ a positivist approach in quoting numbers, especially descriptive statistics XE "statistics" , and the interpretive approach in referring to the churches’ appeals in their protest XE "protest"  movements.

First, I explain the meaning of civil society XE "civil society"  and the CSI XE "CSI" . Then, I examine the strengths and weaknesses of the Christian Church in mainland China, Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan using the four dimensions in the CSI: structure, environment, values, and impact. This is followed by concluding remarks. I hope this analysis will shed light on factors that are increasingly becoming crucial in influencing the Church’s role in civil society as the Church is gaining importance in the sociopolitical and economic XE "economic"  development of Greater China.

Civil Society, the Church as a Civil Society Organization, and the Civil Society Index

Civil society has many different definitions XE "civil society" , but it usually means a space where the state XE "state" , the market XE "market" , and the family intersect, or a third sector other than the state and the market. [4] As Habermas says, its institutional core

is constituted by voluntary unions outside the realm of the state XE "state"  and the economy XE "economy"  and ranging … from churches, cultural associations, and academies to independent media, sport and leisure clubs, debating societies, groups of concerned citizens, and grass-roots petitioning drives all the way to occupational associations, political parties, labor XE "labor"  unions, and “alternative institutions.”[5]

For Habermas and others, faith-based XE "faith-based"  organizations such as churches are important parts of civil society XE "civil society" .[6]

In addition, as Putnam points out, the organizations and individuals involved must also embody characteristics of civic engagement; reciprocal, horizontal, and cooperative relationships with one another; high levels of solidarity XE "solidarity" , trust, and tolerance XE "tolerance" ; and openness to joining or working with different associations, moderating and expanding loyalties and interests.[7] The idea of civil society XE "civil society"  is based on civility XE "civility"  and implies “a change [in the 1970s] in emphasis from material security to concerns about democracy XE "democracy" , participation, and meaning, and involved, among others, a formation towards cosmopolitan values such as tolerance and respect for human rights XE "human rights" .”[8]

The Christian Church is thus not only a part of civil society XE "civil society"  but an important part. In fact, the idea of civil society can be traced to Christian natural law XE "natural law"  speculation and the Scottish Enlightenment in the late seventeenth and early eighteenth century XE "Enlightenment" . In other words, the idea of a society composed of agentic individuals and autonomous social actors as ethical and moral entities is rooted in Christianity, especially Calvinism XE "Calvinism" .[9]

But how well does the Christian Church do as a CSO XE "CSO" ? As mentioned above, in the 2000s CIVICUS XE "CIVICUS"  developed and implemented a CSI XE "CSI"  to measure the state XE "state"  of the civil society in a country.[10] More specifically, the CSI has four dimensions (structure, environment, values and impact), 20 subdimensions, and 70 indicators. Each country can adapt the indicators to fit its own conditions.[11] Because this paper is limited to the Christian Church, I focus on only some of the indicators.

In terms of structure, I focus on the breadth and depth of membership and participation, the levels of organization, communication, and cooperation within and between church organizations. With respect to the environment, I focus on the political and legal environment or the relationship between church and state XE "state" . In terms of values, I examine whether the Church has values such as democracy XE "democracy" , tolerance XE "tolerance" , gender XE "gender"  equity, nonviolence XE "non-violence" , poverty XE "poverty"  alleviation, and environmental XE "environmental"  protection. And regarding the impact, I explore the Church’s role in civic activism XE "activism"  and social services XE "social services" .


Figure 1. Civil Society Index in Hong Kong, Taiwan, and mainland China

Source: Jia Xijin, “Zhongguo gongmin shehui de xianzhuang yu qianjing中国公民社会的现状与前景 [The Current Status of and Future Prospects for Civil Society XE "civil society"  in China],” a talk delivered at Tianze Shuangzhou Luntan [Biweekly forum of Tianze], February 29, 2008.

In Figure 1, I present the findings of a CIVICUS XE "CIVICUS"  survey of Hong Kong, Taiwan, and mainland China regarding the four dimensions of the CSI XE "CSI"  in each area so that we have an idea of the general picture of each place before we move on to our analysis of the Christian Church in those dimensions. The score for each dimension is from 0 to 3: the lower the number, the weaker the dimension, and civil society XE "civil society"  in general. The values for mainland China (the innermost line) in all the four dimensions are lower than for Hong Kong (the middle line) and Taiwan; Taiwan (the outermost line) has the highest values and therefore the strongest civil society.

Using the same logic and similar dimensions, we can measure the strength of the Christian Church as a CSO XE "CSO" . Based on the literature, we can deduce that the Hong Kong Christian Church is the strongest CSO, unlike as portrayed in Figure 1, followed by Taiwan and Macau, with the church in the mainland the weakest. An imaginary diamond depicting the strength of the Christian Church in Greater China would resemble Figure 1, but Hong Kong would be in the outer line, followed by Taiwan and Macau, and mainland China would be in the innermost line. That is our hypothesis, and we now examine the four dimensions to see how each church scores in those aspects.

Structural Characteristics of the Christian Church

As mentioned above, structure measures the breadth and depth of participation and the levels of organization, communication, and cooperation. In Habermas’s terms, these are voluntary unions that have horizontal and cooperative relationships that CSOs embody, according to Putnam. For this dimension, we examine the number of Christians in each of the four regions of Greater China, their organization, and their communication and cooperation with each other.

According to Liu Peng, the official number of Christians in mainland China in 2010 was 23.05 million.[12] However, a Pew report says that in 2010 China had 67 million Christians, or 5.15 percent of its population (see Table 1).[13] Fenggang Yang predicts that by 2030, China will have 224 million Christians, or 17.2 percent of the population, if the Pew number is correct, given that the number of Christians in China increased from 6 million to 67 million over the past thirty years and that the political, economic XE "economic" , and cultural factors that foster Christian conversion XE "conversion"  are unlikely to change much.[14]

By any account and whichever number we use, the Christian Church in mainland China is undoubtedly the largest organization now other than the CCP XE "CCP" , which has a membership of 90 million. If Fenggang Yang’s prediction comes true, it might even surpass the CCP in the near future. That speaks to the breadth of the organization.

Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan also have sizable numbers of Christians. Table 1 indicates that in terms of the share of Christians in the population, Hong Kong ranks first in Greater China as of 2017 with 12 percent to 23 percent, followed by Taiwan, with 5.0 percent to about 7.0 percent, Macau, with 5.38 percent, and mainland China, with 5.15 percent. These percentages mean numbers from 35,000 in Macau to 576,000 in Taiwan and 854,000 in Hong Kong, although in sheer numbers, they are still dwarfed by the 67 million in mainland China.

Sources:

a. Lin Pen Hsuan, “Taiwan de zongjiao xingzheng yu zongjiao lifa wenti台湾的宗教行政与宗教立法问题” [Religious administration and legalization in Taiwan], talk at Beijing Institute of Technology, October 16, 2007, Zongjiao yu fazhi 宗教与法治 [Religion and the Rule of Law] XE "law"  (spring 2015); US CIA Factbook, https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/geos/tw.html#People/, accessed November 21, 2016. The Taiwan government statistics XE "statistics" , however, give a much smaller number: 181,215 Catholics and 396,689 Protestants, with a total of 592,815 or 2.47 percent of the population. See the ROC’s Ministry of the Interior website at http://statis.moi.gov.tw/micst/stmain.jsp?sys=100/, accessed November 24, 2016. A survey by the Protestant Church gives a larger number of 6.95 percent, including children, with Protestants being 5.86 percent of the Taiwan population. See John S.T. Chu and volunteers, ed., “2013 Taiwan jidujiaohui jiaoshi baogao 2013台湾基督教会教势报告 [A Report on the Development of Christian Churches in Taiwan in 2013]” (Taiwan Church Report 2013), 2, http://www.ccea.org.tw/cceaup/church/christianityreport/2013.pdf, accessed November 27, 2016.

b. Hong Kong government website, “Xianggang bianlan: Zongjiao yu fengsu 香港便览:宗教与风俗 [A Brief Introduction to Hong Kong: Religion and Customs],” http://www.gov.hk/tc/about/abouthk/factsheets/docs/religion.pdf, accessed November 24, 2016. The larger number comes from a 2012 survey by the Divinity School of Chung Chi College, which reports that 16 percent of the 1,505 respondents were Protestant and 3.6 percent were Catholic. The numbers in other surveys done for the Hong Kong Transition Project at Hong Kong Baptist University are bit higher: 7 percent Catholics and 16 percent Protestants, or 23 percent altogether. For these numbers, see June Cheng, “How Many Christians Live in Hong Kong,” World Net, https://world.wng.org/2014/10/how_many_christians_live_in_hong_kong/, accessed November 21, 2016.

c. Cited in Yang, “Exceptionalism or Chinamerica, 9.
      d. UCA News, “Jiaozong wei Xianggang jiaoqu renming jiebanren, Yang Mingzhang huo wei wei zhuli zhujiao 教宗为香港教区任命接班人,杨鸣章获委为助理主教 [Pope XE "Pope"  Appoints New Coadjutor Bishop for Hong Kong, and Auxiliary Bishop Michael Yeung Ming-Cheung Will Succeed Cardinal John Tong Hon],” http://china.ucanews.com/2016/11/14/, accessed November 24, 2016.
      e. US State Department [Meiguo guowuyan minzhu renquan he laogong shiwuju 美国国务院民主人权和劳工事务局 Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor, US State Department], “2014 nian guoji zongjiao ziyou baogao 2014年国际宗教自由报告” [Report on Religious Freedom in the World in 2014], http://www.humanrights.gov/pdf/china-includes-tibet-hongkong-macau-chi-final.pdf, accessed November 24, 2016.

But, of course, numbers do not always translate into power, and the Christian Church certainly cannot compare to the CCP XE "CCP"  in organizational power. For example, there is the division between Catholics and Protestants, between the official church and the unofficial or underground XE "underground"  church among Catholics, and the open churches and the house churches XE "house churches"  among Protestants. There is often bitter and tragic factionalism within the Church.[15] Half of all Christians worship in unregistered churches, XE "unregistered churches"  and they “contend that government-approved churches are tools of the state XE "state" , as sermons are vetted to avoid contentious political and social issues XE "social issues"  and clergy are appointed by the Party rather than by congregants or, in the case of the Catholic Church, the Vatican XE "Vatican" .”[16] The activities of the underground XE "underground" \t "See House Church"  and house churches are closely monitored by the public security bureaus XE "public security bureaus"  or national security agencies XE "national security agencies"  at every level.[17] Whereas the official and open churches try to cooperate with the state, the underground churches XE "underground churches"  and the house churches want to maintain independence XE "independence" . And they may even confront the state by refusing to register with the Department of Civil Affairs XE "Department of Civil Affairs" .[18] The Vatican made a deal with Beijing on the appointment of bishops and the merging of the official and underground churches in 2018, but the results so far are mixed, and conflicts abound.[19]

Nonetheless, numbers and percentages of the population are still an indication that the Church as a CSO XE "CSO"  is a force to be reckoned with. My discussion in the following sections addresses that effect despite the many constraints and obstacles facing the Church in China.

In addition to numbers and percentages, communication and cooperation within and between the Churches is also important, as Putnam would say. This is indeed hard for the unofficial church, but the official church sometimes has connections with other religions or religious organizations overseas. A research project by Renmin University in 2015 found that 9.9 percent of the 425 Catholic Churches [Zongjiao huodong changsuo宗教活动场所] they surveyed organized gatherings across different religions; 5.5 percent of the 1,465 Protestant Church arenas did the same. As for connections with overseas religious organizations, only 3.3 percent of the former and 5.3 percent of the latter organized activities.[20]

For example, in 2013 the Chinese Catholic Patriotic Association XE "Chinese Catholic Patriotic Association"  and the Bishops’ Conference of the Catholic Church XE "Bishops’ Conference of the Catholic Church"  in China received Catholic leaders from Singapore, South Korea, Belgium, and the Orthodox Church leaders from Russia, and they visited the Catholic Church in Belgium and South Korea.[21] They also exchanged visits with one another across parishes and provinces in 2014, in and between, for example, Shanghai, Fujian, Hebei, Jiangsu, Sichuan, Hubei, and Chongqing.[22]

In 2013, the Protestant Church attended a forum held with the Protestant Church in Taipei to discuss peace and communication in August and the World Christian Association XE "World Christian Association" ’s tenth annual meeting in October and hosted a symposium with Protestant leaders from the US. In 2013, the National Committee of the Three-Self XE "Three-Self"  Patriotic Movement (TSPM XE "TSPM" ) (self-governing, self-propagating, and self-financing) of the Protestant Churches in China XE "National Committee of Three-Self Patriotic Movement of the Protestant Churches in China" \t "See Three-Self"  and China Christian Council XE "China Christian Council"  (CCC XE "CCC" ) received 466 overseas visitors in 71 groups.[23] But if the Christian Church, both official and unofficial, has had a wealth of overseas contacts, including those with Hong Kong and Taiwan,[24] they are likely to be greatly curtailed under the Xi Jinping XE "Xi Jinping"  regime. [25] Relations with overseas churches are increasingly discouraged by the state and may even become a delegitimizing factor.

They also have regular meetings among themselves. In 2013, the official Catholic Church, for example, had joint meetings of bishops, meetings on parish management, on how to democratically run the Church following the instructions of Vatican XE "Vatican"  II XE "Vatican II" , on how to train religious personnel, on how to do charity XE "charity"  work, on how to localize theology XE "theology" , and so on. The Catholic Church at local levels also held regular meetings and activities in 2013.[26]

One thing that is distinctive about Christianity is its universalism, which requires connections between the churches in China and other Christian churches in the world. Even during the 1950s, Wu Yaozong, the chairman of the Three-Self Patriotic XE "patriotic"  Movement, “recognized the spiritual exchanges between the Chinese Church and the world’s Christians.”[27] But the Catholic Church’s connection with the Vatican XE "Vatican"  has always been an issue of contention regarding the consecration of bishops: who has the final say over the choice of candidates for the episcopacy? The government’s Three-Self XE "Three-Self"  concept would leave the Vatican out of the picture, but that is not what Catholicism is about. The Vatican wants the underground XE "underground"  church to become open and for its bishops to be named. But, as mentioned above, even though the Vatican and the Chinese government have now come to an agreement on these two issues, too many obstacles remain unresolved.[28]

In contrast, Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan usually do not have any problem connecting with the universal church. In Hong Kong in 1988, for example, thirteen CSOs established Hong Kong Human Rights Commission, XE "Hong Kong Human Rights Commission"  including both the Catholic and Protestant Churches. Together, they have organized human rights XE "human rights"  reports and forums on issues ranging from health care to the safety of nuclear power plants.[29] As discussed below, the Christian Church in Hong Kong also coordinates the democracy XE "democracy"  movement in Hong Kong. In Taiwan, the Catholic and Protestant Churches both joined other religious groups in a declaration against legislation allowing homosexual XE "homosexual"  couples to marry.[30]

But they do have problems connecting with the mainland Christian Church. The Chinese government has already banned Chinese Christians from attending some religious conferences in Hong Kong, and it has increased oversight of mainland programs run by Hong Kong pastors.[31] Or these programs can only be on social service XE "social service"  issues. For example, in 2013, the TSPM XE "TSPM"  and the CCC XE "CCC"  invited leaders and experts from the Christian Church clinics in Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan to come to the mainland to explore how to handle relationship between doctors and patients, how to manage finances in clinics run by the Christian Church, and other issues related to nutrition and health.[32]

In addition to the communication and cooperation within and between churches, another important issue is the Church’s relationship with the state XE "state" , which could also be viewed as a structural issue. In this regard, the mainland China Christian Church has a special advantage (or disadvantage): the open and official church’s leaders are usually members of the various levels of people’s congresses and political consultative conferences (PCCs).[33] Renmin University’s research found that 27.5 percent of the Catholic churches have priests serve as members of the PCC whereas 11.6 percent of the Protestant churches do. And 0.9 percent of the former has members serve on the people’s congress, XE "People’s Congress"  and 2.4 percent of the latter do.[34] Balance between the two churches seems to have been achieved in their representation in the two bodies: if there are more in one, then there are fewer in the other. But it does not matter because they are not decision-making bodies. In addition, the government agencies such as the religious bureaus and the united front departments meet from 2.9 to 4 times a year.[35]

Indeed, the open church, under the leadership of the TSPM XE "TSPM" , is part of the government apparatus and thus a government-organized nongovernmental organization (GONGO), rather than a regular NGO XE "NGO" \t "See Non-Governmental Organization"  XE "NGO" . They have much closer connections with the government than in the case of Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan. In Hong Kong, for example, the Catholic Church has refused to participate in the Chief Executive XE "Chief Executive"  Election Committee as one religious entity, although as a compromise it arranges for individual Catholics to join.

The Christian Church has covered large parts of Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan. In all these places, the Catholic Church is smaller than the Protestant Church, except in Macau. But as Table 2.2 shows, even the Catholic Church covers a fair amount of ground. Table 2.2 lists the total number of the Catholic Church’s parishes, churches, and church-related organizations in Hong Kong, Macau, Taipei, and Shanghai. It is true that the Catholic Church cannot represent the entire Christian Church, and Taipei and Shanghai cannot represent Taiwan and mainland China respectively, so we need to gather information for the entire Church in all four regions. Taiwan alone, for example, has 4,101 different Protestant churches.[36] But they give us an idea of the breadth of coverage by the Christian Church in Greater China, especially in Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan. Again, this does not include the Protestant Church, which covers more ground in Hong Kong and Taiwan, and much more in mainland China except in Macau (for the differences in percentages between the two churches, see Table 1).[37]

Source: Zhidong Hao, Shun-hing Chan, Wen-ban Kuo, Yik Fai Tam, and Ming Jing, “Catholicism and Its Civic Engagement: Case Studies of the Catholic Church in Hong Kong, Macau, Taipei, and Shanghai,” Review of Religion and Chinese Society 1 (2014): 58.

As Table 2 shows, Macau’s Catholic Church covers the most people, with 16.83 churches and church-related organizations per 100,000 people, followed by Taipei, Hong Kong, and Shanghai. As Table 1 indicates, in Macau, the Catholic Church is much larger than the Protestant Church, so it is understandable that the number per 100,000 (16.83) there is much larger than in the other places (9.16 for Hong Kong and 10.96 for Taipei). In mainland China, the Catholic Church is much smaller than the Protestant Church, so it is understandable that the number per 100,000 in Shanghai (0.68) is much smaller. If these numbers are of any indication, and we combine Tables 1 (the percentage of Catholics and Protestants) and 2 (the Catholic Church), we can reasonably assume that the numbers of churches and church-related organizations per 100,000 should more than double in Hong Kong and Taiwan (because the percentage of Protestant population is slightly higher than the Catholic population) and would quadruple in mainland China. Still, the number in mainland China is much smaller proportionately because of the heavy religious suppression there. They may not increase much in Macau because the Protestant Church is significantly smaller in Macau.

Having done all those calculations and observations, we conclude that structurally Hong Kong and Taiwan are larger than Macau, and mainland China trails behind. In terms of churches and church-related organizations per 100,000, the Christian Church in mainland China is still comparatively small as a result of government suppression and oppression, although it still has the largest number of Christians. The Church in mainland China is a less influential and weaker CSO XE "CSO"  structurally. This is also true of other structural indicators, such as the interaction between and within the Church, and is seen later in their impact on civic activism XE "activism"  and social services XE "social services" . All these differences have to do with the political and legal environment for the Christian Church, to which we now turn.

Political and Legal Environment for the Christian Church

The political and legal environment for civil society XE "civil society" , which directly affects structure and impact, has worsened in mainland China in general since Xi Jinping XE "Xi Jinping"  came to power in 2012. In March 2013, the CCP XE "CCP"  distributed a document calling civil society a mechanism for undermining the social foundation of the CCP’s rule in China. Since then, some NGO XE "NGO"  organizers and rights protection lawyers have been arrested and sentenced to prison terms. Xu Zhiyong 许志永of Gongmeng (an organization that advocated equal rights for education and transparency of government finances) was sentenced in 2014 to four years in prison, and Meng Han 孟晗 of a workers’ service organization in Panyu, Guangdong, was arrested in December 2015 and later sentenced to twenty-one months of imprisonment. Some lawyers rounded up on July 9, 2015, were also sentenced to prison terms. Liberal XE "Liberal"  magazines and websites such as Yanhuang chunqiu [China Through the Ages炎黃春秋, a magazine on historical events], Lingdao zhe [Leaders, 領導者], Gongshi wang [Consensus XE "consensus" , 共識網,a website] have either been taken over by the party loyalists (the first one) or simply closed down (the latter two). Some entrepreneurs XE "entrepreneurs"  and academics have been arrested and even sentenced to prison terms. Examples are Tashi Wangchuk, a Tibetan XE "Tibetan"  entrepreneur and education advocate who was sentenced to five years in prison in 2018, and Ilham Tohti, an academic from Minzu University in Beijing, who was sentenced to life in prison for advocating Uyghur XE "Uyghur"  autonomy XE "autonomy" . Other entrepreneurs and academics who have been politically active and socially conscious have gotten the message about self-censorship and usually do not want to run the same risks.[38]

At the same time, the CCP XE "CCP" -state XE "state"  has tightened the rules and regulations governing NGOs and religious organizations to prevent the potential for a “color revolution XE "color revolution" ” as seen in the Soviet bloc and the Middle East. On April 28, 2016, the Standing Committee of the Chinese National People’s Congress XE "People’s Congress"  (NPC XE "NPC" ) passed a law XE "law"  on managing—and, in essence, restricting—the activities of foreign NGOs, which then numbered 7,000, and their local partners. Each of them must register with the police XE "police"  (Article 6) or stop operating in the country. This means that the police monitor their activities, scrutinize their finances, and interrogate their employees at any time with much greater vigor than before (see Articles 41–43). These rules effectively discourage and even forbid foreign NGOs to operate in China and thereby limit what domestic NGOs can do. According to the law, foreign NGOs cannot have branches in China unless they are approved by the State Council (Article 18), and they cannot raise funds in China for their activities (Article 21). Chinese NGOs cannot represent or accept funding from any unregistered foreign NGOs (Article 32). NGOs, domestic and foreign, that advocate the protection of human rights XE "human rights" , democratization XE "democratization" , the rule of law XE "rule of law" , and government transparency are especially affected.[39] Article 5 stipulates that foreign NGOs cannot engage or support political and religious activities in China. The basic tone of the law is very negative toward foreign NGOs and by implication toward domestic NGOs as well.

To complement the rules on civil society XE "civil society" , the CCP XE "CCP"  state XE "state"  also passed the Religious Affairs XE "Religious Affairs"  Regulations in 2017. Like the new law XE "law"  on foreign NGOs, these regulations restrict religious organizations’ contact with foreign religious institutions. It specifically states that religious organizations practice independence XE "independence"  and self-governance and cannot be controlled by foreign forces (Article 5).

It requires religious organizations to register with the county-level government (Article 21). This seems to target the underground XE "underground"  and house churches XE "house churches" . It says that those who have not registered will be asked to register, and, if they do not, they will be closed (Article 65). Some think that the new rule effectively makes unregistered churches XE "unregistered churches"  illegal.[40] If they are illegal, the government can take action against them. In Anhui Province, for example, the government had already made plans before the new law XE "law"  to close family churches that did not register.[41] But it is not clear how effective this regulation will be. Underground XE "Underground"  and house churches usually refuse to register because doing so would mean that they would have to join the official church. So far, most of the time the government might pretend not to see them, but some churches have been closed, and others facing demolition XE "demolition" . For example, in the second half of 2018, three well-known churches were closed: the 500-member Early Rain XE "Early Rain"  Covenant Church in Chengdu, whose pastor, Wang Yi, was sentenced to nine years in prison at the end of 2019, the 1,500-member Zion Church XE "Zion Church"  in Beijing, and the 5,000-member Rongguili Church in Guangzhou.[42] Other churches face demolition, such as the Annunciation Church in Jiangxi Province, which serves 150 Catholics.[43]

The draft also stipulates for the first time that religious organizations are nonprofit XE "nonprofit"  social groups [shehui tuanti 社会团体], and it allows spiritual groups to engage in charitable work although no religious activities are allowed in the process (Articles 7, 38, 52, 56). It allows only national and provincial religious organizations to run seminaries [zongjiao yuanjiao 宗教院校] (Articles 11–18) and still does not allow religious organizations to run universities, colleges, secondary schools, or primary schools. Rather, it stipulates that no religious activities or organizations are allowed in regular schools (Article 44).[44]

In contrast to the tightening political and legal environment in mainland China, Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan enjoy a much freer environment. Hong Kong’s Basic Law XE "Hong Kong Basic Law"  stipulates that religious organizations can run religious and other schools, hospitals, and provide charity XE "charity"  or other social services XE "social services"  (Article 141). Schools run by religious organizations can provide its students with religious education (Article 137), and they can maintain contacts with religious organizations and personnel from other parts of the world (Article 141).[45]

The rules and regulations in Macau are similar to and sometimes exactly the same as those in Hong Kong. Macau’s Basic Law XE "Basic Law"  stipulates that people there enjoy freedom of belief and can publicly preach their religion and participate in religious activities (Article 34). It states that the government will not interfere in the internal affairs of religious organizations or their relationship with religious organizations and personnel from other parts of the world (Article 128). The same article also stipulates that religious organizations can run religious schools and other schools, hospitals, and other welfare XE "welfare"  organizations, and provide social services XE "social services" . Religious schools can provide religious courses.[46] Although Taiwan’s rules and regulations regarding religion seem to be spread across various laws, religious organizations enjoy as many rights there as in Hong Kong and Macau.[47]

In sum, the Christian Church in mainland China faces a much stricter political and legal environment, especially after Xi rose to power in 2012. This greatly affects the role it can play (as seen in the section on their impact) and makes it a weaker CSO XE "CSO"  than the Church in other parts of Greater China. But, in terms of values, the difference among the churches is very small, as discussed below.

Values

Does the Christian Church value and practice democracy XE "democracy" , tolerance XE "tolerance" , gender XE "gender"  equity, nonviolence XE "non-violence" , poverty XE "poverty"  alleviation, and environmental XE "environmental"  protection, as is expected of civil societies? The picture may be mixed, but by and large the Church seems to be going in these directions, except in the election XE "elections"  of church leaders.

It is true that the Christian Church is not known as a democratic institution, because religious order and hierarchy XE "hierarchy"  is always dominant.[48] Most pastors are not popularly elected but, rather, are ordained, licensed, and appointed to serve a congregation. Bishops are appointed by the pope.[49] The Church tends to be conservative on some social issues, XE "social issues"  such as abortion XE "abortion"  and homosexuality. The Catholic Church, for example, considers abortion a sin, although the Vatican XE "Vatican"  recently announced that bishops, priests, and special confessors can grant forgiveness for it.[50]

But the Church does value freedom, equality, human dignity, poverty XE "poverty"  alleviation, nonviolence XE "non-violence" , and democratic ideas other than periodic and popular election of its own leaders. Vatican XE "Vatican"  II XE "Vatican II" ’s call for active engagement in protecting human rights XE "human rights"  and fighting poverty is one such example. Vatican II emphasizes the dignity and worth of the human person and the development of the complete individual.[51] The Church “was at the vanguard of the global human rights revolution during the ‘third wave of democratization XE "democratization" ’ from the mid-1970s to the 1990s,” and it is one of the vocal voices in demanding the humanization and moralization of market XE "market"  economies and fair and just treatment of workers.[52]

It is also true that not all churches follow Vatican XE "Vatican"  II XE "Vatican II" . Priests may be admonished to leave politics to the politicians, and some condemn liberation theology XE "liberation theology" .[53] Still, the Church persisted in love and peace. Pope XE "Pope"  Francis declared that, although the world is one of hostility, “in God’s heart there are no enemies.” Implicitly referring to the then–president-elect Donald Trump, he chided those who “raise walls, build barriers, and label people.” And he denounced the tendency to treat “a stranger, an immigrant XE "immigrant"  or a refugee” as the enemy.[54] This is certainly in line with Vatican II’s teachings and with the values of civil society XE "civil society" .

This is true in the Chinese Christian Church, too. In general, various religions in China do advocate love, tolerance XE "tolerance" , responsibility, trust, community, and good works.[55] In the 1990s in Wenzhou, lay leaders of Longgang Church debated whether they should engage in dialogue XE "dialogue"  with the government and finally came to a consensus XE "consensus"  that they should negotiate with the government on state XE "state"  policies regarding the protection of the interests of the Church. And they also tried to bridge the open and the underground XE "underground"  churches XE "underground churches"  by emphasizing reconciliation and unity.[56] Indeed, many believers “attend both the small group meetings in the house church and the sermon sessions” in the open church. And they treat one another as brothers and sisters, and they value truth.[57]

Wenzhou Christian entrepreneurs XE "entrepreneurs"  also brought investment and enterprises to poverty XE "poverty" -stricken areas while successfully evangelizing there.[58] The latter has become more difficult since 2018, when the new regulations went into effect. Still there is more that the Christian Church can do to implement these values, which is discussed in the next section.

In sum, in terms of values the Christian Church is not very different in the different locations. By and large, as a universal church, it conforms to the values of civil society XE "civil society"  even though it is more conservative on some issues. We can say that the Church is thus a strong CSO XE "CSO"  in terms of values in all the four regions.

Impact

In this section, I focus on two important impacts: political and social. By political, I mean civic activism XE "activism" , the efforts by the Christian Church in asserting its own rights and supporting democratic movement in terms of promoting egalitarian values and freedom of speech XE "freedom of speech"  and religion as would be explicated by Habermas and Putnam. By social, I mean their efforts in providing social services XE "social services"  in education, elder care, and so on.

Political Engagement and Civic Activism

In mainland China, the conflict between the Christian Church and the party-state XE "state"  traces back to the early days of the founding of the People’s Republic of China XE "Republic of China" . The party-state thought that there were reactionaries within the Church who would conspire with imperialists in their cultural invasion and espionage.[59] For example, the Catholic Church alone had numerous deaths, expulsions, and detentions among its adherents. “The bishops and clergy in China led a heroic struggle in their efforts to keep the church independent from the state: some of them died as martyrs XE "martyrs" , over 2,400 foreign priests were expelled from China (in 1949 there were 2,500 of them), and hundreds of them were imprisoned (in 1955, in Shanghai alone about 1,200 leading Catholics were arrested).”[60] Clergy who did not cooperate include Wang Mingdao 王明道, Kung Pin-Mei 龚品梅, and Watchman Nee 倪柝声 [Ni Tuosheng].[61]

Others in the Christian Church, however, cooperated with the government and joined the “Three-Self” Movement, such as Wu Yaozong 吴耀宗, “a patriotic XE "patriotic"  Christian who actively participated in resisting Japanese XE "Japanese"  aggression and the national salvation movement during the 1930s.”[62] In the contemporary era, examples of those seeking the state XE "state" ’s recognition and negotiating the boundaries between religion and politics include not only the Three-Self XE "Three-Self"  church but some Christian entrepreneurs XE "entrepreneurs" .[63]

But there is also resistance. The 2015 Catholic campaign in Wenzhou against church demolitions XE "demolitions"  and cross removals is one example of how the Christian Church attempts to resist what it viewed as erroneous religious policies and to protect its beliefs and practices. The Wenzhou clergy’s public statement, titled “Wenzhou Catholic Diocese XE "Diocese" ’s Appeal to Fellow Countrymen and Christians throughout China,” was even more daring, especially when it called on citizens and Christians in all of China to stand up for their civil rights XE "civil rights" .[64] Even provincial branches of the Three-Self XE "Three-Self"  Patriotic Movement and the Chinese Patriotic Catholic Association sent letters to CCP leaders condemning the crackdown on Christian symbols.[65] Even though, from February 2014 to August 2015 alone, 1,200 crosses were removed (see for example Figure 2), the Christian Church’s daring actions made history and were a landmark in rights protection movements. It will no doubt inspire the same in China’s own civil society XE "civil society"  movements.[66]

Figure 2: Tu Shouzhe, a Protestant lay leader, standing on the roof of his church in Muyang, Zhejiang Province, last year, hours after government workers cut down its cross.

Source: Credit Mark Schiefelbein/Associated Press, in Ian Johnson, “China Seeks Tighter Grip in Wake of a Religious Revival,” The New York Times, Oct. 7, 2016.

But this kind of resistance is rare, and it is equally rare for it to succeed. On July 7, 2012, Thaddeus Ma Daqin, the auxiliary bishop of Shanghai, declared that he would no longer serve in the CCPA XE "Chinese Catholic Patriotic Association" . He was demoted from his position and remains under virtual house arrest, unable to perform his duties. The imprisonment of the Early Rain XE "Early Rain"  pastor and believers mentioned above is another example. Apparently, resistance is still risky, and civic activism XE "activism"  in mainland China is rare, indeed.

So far, the Christian Church in Hong Kong has not had the same political and legal constraints, and it has played a much more active role in civil society XE "civil society" . In the 1980s and 1990s, before and after the handover of Hong Kong to China in 1997, the Catholic Church was involved in social advocacy supporting the right of brides from China to reside legally in Hong Kong after marriage (1985), the welfare XE "welfare"  of Vietnamese refugees XE "refugees"  (1988), the right of illegal workers in Hong Kong (1988), retirement benefits of Hong Kong residents (1992), health-care policies (1993), gender XE "gender"  equality (1994–1995), against the abuse of power by the police (1996), and so on. The Church was active in mobilizing people to support direct elections XE "elections"  with petitions, forums, and declarations. And they strongly supported the democracy XE "democracy"  movement in China in 1989.[67] The Church strongly opposed the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region XE "HKSAR"  government’s move to ask the Chinese NPC XE "NPC"  to interpret the law XE "law"  on the rights of mainland children born in Hong Kong to become Hong Kong citizens. The Church’s role in the movement against the legislation of Article 23 XE "Article 23"  regarding national security was instrumental in the demonstration XE "demonstration"  by 500,000 people on July 1, 2003.[68]

The Protestant Church has also been actively involved in civil society XE "civil society"  movements. The Hong Kong Christian Council XE "Hong Kong Christian Council"  [Jidujiao xie jin hui基督教协进会] organized a movement against bus companies for raising fares in 1980, and against power companies for raising fees in 1981. The Protestant Church’s concerns included issues related to the economy, political democratization XE "democratization" , human rights XE "human rights" , culture, education, women’s rights, the Basic Law XE "Basic Law" , the future of Hong Kong, and so forth. It also joined the Catholic Church in the movement against the legislation of Article 23 XE "Article 23" . The Church of Christ in China criticized the government on issues such as undocumented children’s right to attend school (2001), the rights of peaceful demonstrations XE "demonstrations"  (2002), the legislation of Article 23 (2003), universal suffrage XE "universal suffrage"  (2004, 2005), and opposition to interpretation of Hong Kong law XE "law"  by the Chinese NPC XE "NPC" .[69]

In 2014, Christians in Hong Kong played a key role in the Umbrella Movement XE "Umbrella Movement"  to strive for universal suffrage XE "universal suffrage" , and their advocacy of nonviolence is also notable (see Figures 3 and 4).[70] In 2016, 725 Christians in both the Catholic and Protestant Churches signed a petition asking the NPC XE "NPC"  to refrain from interpretation of what was and was not the standard way to take an oath at the inauguration of new legislators, trusting the Hong Kong court to make the right judgment.[71] The Catholic Church’s justice and peace commission also made statements against the NPC’s attempt to interfere with Hong Kong’s autonomy.[72] Coadjutor bishop Yeung made a statement at a press conference lamenting the NPC’s interpretation of Hong Kong’s Basic Law XE "Basic Law"  while calling for the protection of the “one country, two systems” arrangement between Hong Kong and mainland China.[73] In 2019, the Church was also actively involved in the protest XE "protest"  movement against the government’s effort to pass an extradition bill XE "extradition bill" , calling for peaceful protest and reasonable engagement.

The Chinese government views the Christian Church’s political engagement before and after the handover and its advocacy of democracy XE "democracy"  and support for democratization XE "democratization"  as hostile activity in opposition to “the historical tide.” And it claims that the Church is being used by “international anti-Chinese forces.”[74] The CCP XE "CCP"  has always feared that Hong Kong would become an anti-party-state XE "state"  base, and it is especially wary of the Church’s role in it. That might be one reason that the religious crackdown on the mainland is severe. Macau’s case of a timid church, discussed below, which might indicate that not all the churches are the same, does not seem to give it much assurance.

Figure 3: Pro-democracy protesters from a politically active Christian church hold up yellow umbrellas, a symbol of the Occupy Central civil disobedience movement, as they sing Christmas carols at Times Square in Hong Kong early on Dec. 25, 2014.

Source: Photo courtesy of REUTERS/Tyrone Siu, Religion News Service at http://religionnews.com/2016/03/08/chinas-efforts-mold-christianity-in-its-own-image-face-resistance/, last accessed Nov. 21, 2016.

In Macau, rather than engaging in activism as XE "activism"  called for by Vatican XE "Vatican"  II XE "Vatican II" , the Catholic Church has instead engaged in corporatism XE "corporatism"  in its relationship with the government. In fact, the Catholic Church was part of the government in colonial XE "colonial"  times. Initially, Catholicism was the state XE "state"  religion, and the bishops played a key role in the government of Macau. Following that tradition, the Church has offered steadfast service to the government in the education of children and the care of the elderly, discussed further below. After the handover of Macau to China in 1999, the Church adopted a low-key position and seldom if ever joined the political movements there, unlike the Church in Hong Kong. If the Church has played a role at all, it is through individual Catholics such as Ng Kuo Cheong (a legislator) and Chan Wai Chi (a former legislator and editor of the weekly often critical of the government), both of whom are strong advocates of democracy XE "democracy" .[75]

Figure 4: The retired Cardinal Joseph Zen Ze-kiun leading a demonstration demanding universal suffrage, June 2014.

Source: Gu Qinger, “首日公投超40萬,港人反中共聲音強烈”,at Epochtimes, http://www.epochtimes.com/b5/14/6/21/n4183208.htm, accessed July 16, 2017.

In Taiwan as well, the Christian Church has a tradition of civic engagement, like Hong Kong but very much unlike Macau. In the 1980s, the Catholic Church conflicted with the government over labor XE "labor"  issues, which resulted in the expulsion of some foreign priests from Taiwan.[76] As Lin Pen Hsuan points out, even if the number of Christians in Taiwan is comparatively small, their influence is important [Fayan bijiao you fenliang 发言比较有份量]. The Presbyterian Church has advocated for Taiwan independence XE "independence" . In the 1970s, for example, it published three statements to that effect (Guoshi shengming 国是声明, a declaration of national affairs, 1971; Women de huyu我们的呼吁, our appeals, 1975; Renquan xuanyan人权宣言, a declaration of human rights, 1977) and one statement on Taiwan independence (Taiwan zhuquan duli xuanyan 台湾主权独立宣言, 1991). [77] Its role in the independence movement is noteworthy.

In the controversy over the legalization of gay marriage in 2016, while some Protestant Christians supported such legislation, the Catholic Church strongly opposed it and had launched a campaign opposing it (see Figure 5). It said that the Church did not oppose giving gays and lesbians the right to obtain inheritance benefits, burial together, hospital visits, and approval of medical treatment for their significant other, but they opposed extending the right to marriage. The Catholic Church organized 10,000 petitions to Taiwan’s Legislative Yuan (legislature) and President Tsai Ying-wen. One Catholic commented that this had been the first large-scale protest XE "protest"  movement launched by the Church in the sixty years since he had been baptized.[78] In other words, the Catholics engaged in less civic engagement than the Protestants.

Figure 5: Catholics against homosexual marriage

Source:  The Catholic Voice at http://www.cathvoice.org.tw/news, 11/16/2016.

In sum, the Christian Church in Hong Kong is apparently the most vibrant in civic activism XE "activism" , followed by Taiwan. The Church in mainland China seems to be catching up but with all the political and legal constraints, it is very difficult—if not impossible—for it to play a bigger role than it does now. The Church is the most passive in civic activism in Macau. So, in terms of the church’s performance in civic activism and possible impact, Hong Kong is the strongest CSO XE "CSO" , followed by Taiwan, mainland China, and Macau.

Social Services

As mentioned above, the Chinese government, while maintaining control, finds that religion can be of some use, too. It has allowed religious organizations to offer limited social services XE "social services" . For example, data on 2013 show that the open Catholic Church ran 9 orphanages, 7 special education schools, 53 elder-care centers, 136 clinics, 8 hospitals, 43 kindergartens, 2 cultural schools, and 1 occupational school. It was also involved in services for AIDS patients, building wells for drought-stricken areas, support for students in poor families, donations to disadvantaged groups totaling RMB 27.74 million (in the previous five years, cash donations totaled RMB 250 million).[79] Meanwhile, the TSPM XE "TSPM"  and the CCC XE "CCC"  created elder-care centers and trained 110 caregivers. They were involved in forty-four social service XE "social service"  activities, including five related to child care, seven related to education in impoverished areas, six related to health and sanitation, four related to increasing service abilities, nine related to elder-care training, six in seminary work, five in disaster XE "disaster"  relief, and two on overseas exchange, with total spending of RMB 7.7 million.[80] But, given the size of the mainland population, those services are minimal.

Still, they indicate that the official Christian Church in China focuses on social services XE "social services" . In 2014, the Church organized visits to the US and Australia to learn what these countries do with elder care, hospitals, and so on. And it has begun to train its own elder-care personnel.[81] Meanwhile, the Amity XE "Amity"  Foundation of the Protestant Church initiated seventeen charity XE "charity"  programs in 2014, including education of the children of migrant XE "migrant"  workers, public sanitation, environmental XE "environmental"  protection, disaster XE "disaster"  control, and elder-care. The Shanghai YMCA XE "YMCA"  engage in similar activities.[82]

Wenzhou Christian entrepreneurs XE "entrepreneurs"  helped “a poor inland city to establish an orphanage-based evangelization center,” and in another place a Christian culture-based school spread religion while providing social services XE "social services" . This active participation in political and social affairs contrasts sharply with the older generation’s confrontational mentality and passive social participation.[83]

All these social services XE "social services" , however, are dwarfed by the Christian Church’s activity on the mainland before 1949 and in Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan. In 1875, mainland China had about 800 Christian schools with around 20,000 students. The Protestant Church ran 350 of them with about 6,000 students. In 1875–1900, the number of Christian schools increased to around 2,000, with a student body of about 40,000.[84] The Christian Church’s statistics XE "statistics"  for 1922 indicate that it ran 265 middle schools in 19 provinces, with a student population of 67,600. China had 16 well-regarded universities under religious auspices at a time when it had only three public universities (Beijing University, Shanxi University, and Beiyang University) and five other private universities.[85] In Shaanxi, for example, the Protestant Church established 39 schools between 1888 and 1936. It established girls schools, among them Zunde Middle School in Xi’an,[86] and was the first to advocate equality between men and women. See Figure 6 below.

Figure 6: The graduating class of Zun De Middle School in 1950

Source: Wang Shuofeng, “早期基督教在陕西办学情况及其教育理念和影响:以西安市三中前身‘尊德中学’为例”

Figure 7: Students at Miss Aldersey’s school having a class

Source: Jennifer Bond, “Foreign Puppets, Christian Mothers or Revolutionary Martyrs? The Multiple Identities of Missionary School Students in Zhejiang, 1923-1949.”

In 1844, the British missionary XE "missionary"  Mary Ann Aldersey established the first Christian school for girls in China, Riverside Academy, in Ningbo, Zhejiang. Even though the teachers wanted the students to become good wives and mothers [xian qi liang mu 贤妻良母], many of them became doctors, professors, and revolutionaries.[87] See Figures 7, 8 and 9 about the Academy.

Figure 8: Student association staff members

Source: Jennifer Bond, “Foreign Puppets, Christian Mothers or Revolutionary Martyrs? The Multiple Identities of Missionary School Students in Zhejiang, 1923-1949,”

Figure 9: YWCA members

Source: Jennifer Bond, “Foreign Puppets, Christian Mothers or Revolutionary Martyrs? The Multiple Identities of Missionary School Students in Zhejiang, 1923-1949.”


Figure 10: The Saint Joseph music band

Source: Zhang Xiaoyi, “徐汇中学‘崇思楼’设计者叶肇昌与土山湾乐队.”


Francisco-Xavier Diniz [Yezhaochang 叶肇昌], a Macanese who grew up in Shanghai, organized a military band called the Fanfare de Saint Joseph [Sheng yue se jun yue dui 圣约瑟军乐队] in Tushanwan, Shanghai, in 1903. The members of the band were children from a nearby orphanage in Xuhui District (see Figures 10 and 11).[88]

Figure 11: A priest named 双国英 is teaching a Chinese student saxophone

Source: Zhang Xiaoyi, “徐汇中学‘崇思楼’设计者叶肇昌与土山湾乐队.”

Gao Shining and He Guanghu summarized the social services XE "social services"  offered by the Christian Church in China before 1949: by 1941 it had established 8,034 schools of all kinds; and by 1920, the Protestant Church had established 7,382 schools, including 14 universities. Missionaries XE "missionaries"  established 800 hospitals. Before 1949, hospitals run by the Church comprised 70 percent of the hospitals in China. It had also established hundreds of orphanages and elder-care centers. It founded 70 newspapers and magazines, making up 95 percent of the newspapers and magazines. By 1930, the Catholic Church had built 20 publishers, and by 1935 the Protestant Church had opened 69 presses. The books they published covered the natural sciences, social sciences, and humanities.[89]

This is hardly an exhaustive list. Missionaries published the first Chinese-English dictionary, compiled ethno-cultural studies of minority groups, and tropical medicine compendia. The breadth was astonishing and went well beyond religion. It bears mention that many of the initial PRC leaders had been educated at missionary or church-run schools all the way up to university. Deng Xiaoping learned French at a missionary school. Former students of these schools learned German and translated Marx into Chinese. There was a great intersection between the church and the communist leadership.[90]

Since the reform XE "reform"  and opening in the late 1970s, the mainland Chinese Christian Church has been trying to revive some of the work of its forerunners before 1949. But in the current circumstances, it is unlikely that they will get very far even in their social service XE "social service"  initiatives such as hospitals and elder-care centers. They certainly cannot run religious schools and universities as they did seventy years ago, at least not for the foreseeable future. If it could do all it wanted to, the mainland Christian Church might function in a way that is similar to the Church in Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan. We now examine what these other churches have done.

In terms of social services XE "social services" , about 50 percent of the schools in Hong Kong were opened and continue to be operated by Christian churches, and they offer about a quarter of the social services in the city.[91] They also started several higher education institutions, including the Divinity School of Chung Chi College [Chongji Shuyuan崇基书院] at the Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong Baptist University [Xianggang Jinhui Daxue香港浸会大学], and Lingnan University [Lingnan Daxue岭南大學]. The latter two universities are now publicly funded institutions with a heritage of Christian education.

The biggest social service XE "social service"  organization is Caritas Hong Kong of the Catholic Church, which offers services such as special education, rehabilitation, clinics, elder-care, youth support, occupational training, and refuge centers. The Christian Church runs 70 percent of Hong Kong’s charitable organizations.[92] As the government statistics XE "statistics"  show, the Catholic Church manages 256 schools and kindergartens with 158,000 students, 6 hospitals, 13 clinics, 43 social and family service centers, 23 dormitories, 16 elder-care centers, 27 rehabilitation centers, and others. Similarly, the Protestant Church runs schools, hospitals, clinics, child-care centers, elder-care centers, centers for people with disabilities, rehabilitation centers for drug addicts, and so on. [93]

In Macau, according to the Handbook of the Catholic Church (2012), the Church runs 35 schools, from primary school to university, most of which are primary and secondary schools. There is only one university, the University of St. Joseph. And there are 40 social service XE "social service"  organizations, including Carita de Macau, child-care centers, hospices, elder-care centers, clinics, dormitories, centers for the mentally and physically handicapped, women’s centers, and libraries.[94] The Christian schools in Macau teach about 50 percent of the primary and secondary school students there (see Table 3).

Source: Education and Youth Affairs Bureau websites at http://202.175.82.54/dsej/stati/2015/c/edu_num15_part1.pdf; http://appl.dsej.gov.mo/edustat/edu/stat_d/other_xls.jsp?filename=lotacao.xls; last accessed Nov. 28, 2016.

The Christian Church in Taiwan is actively involved in running schools, universities, and colleges, hospitals and clinics, and other welfare XE "welfare"  facilities.[95] For example, the Catholic Church is currently running 12 hospitals, 15 clinics, 4 elder-care center, 28 rehabilitation centers (启智中心,残障中心) for the mentally ill and the physically disabled, 9 health-care centers (疗养院), 5 children’s centers (少年城) and other social services XE "social services"  for the Aborigines, migrant labor XE "labor" , elderly with memory difficulties (失智老人), girls in trouble (迷途少女), vagrants, prisoners, and hospices (临终照顾). They serve the neglected, powerless, humble, poor, silent, needy, and otherwise disadvantaged.[96] In addition, the Catholic Church runs 3 universities—Fu Jen Catholic University [Furen Daxue辅仁大学], Providence University [Jingyi Daxue静宜大学], and Wenzao Ursuline University of Languages—and 44 primary and secondary schools.[97]

The Protestant Church also runs a number of universities, such as Chung Yuan Christian University [Zhongyuan Daxue中原大学], Chang Jung Christian University [Changrong Daxue长荣大学], Tunghai University [Donghai Daxue东海大学], Aletheia University [Zhenli Daxue真理大学], and St. John’s University [Sheng Yuese Keji Daxue圣约瑟科技大学]. This is in addition to many other social service XE "social service"  organizations that it manages.

In sum, the social services XE "social services"  offered by the Christian Church in Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan are commendable. In view of what the Christian Church did in mainland China before 1949, it could do much more if permitted to do so by the government rules and regulations. In terms of the strength of the Christian Church as a CSO XE "CSO"  in social services, Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan are much stronger than mainland China.

Conclusions

In this chapter, I analyzed the organizational structure of the Christian Church, the political and legal environment it faces as a civil society XE "civil society" , the values of the Church, and its impact in civic activism XE "activism"  and social services XE "social services" . What can we conclude about the Church in mainland China, Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan?

Because we lack comprehensive comparative survey data on these issues, our conclusions can only be tentative and preliminary. But based on our findings in other research, we can draw some tentative conclusions. In our research on the Catholic Church and its civic engagement in Hong Kong, Macau, Taipei, and mainland China, we found that when regulations are stricter, or the political and legal environment is more severe, less civic activism takes place XE "activism"  (see Table 4).[98] This sounds like common sense, but it is nice to have data to back it up. As said earlier, Taipei cannot represent all of Taiwan and Shanghai cannot represent all of mainland China, but they still give us an idea of the differences between the regions.

Table 4 shows that, regarding the Catholic Church in Greater China, “the less notice respondents take of government opinion, or the less government regulation, the more participation in civic activism XE "activism"  there is, and vice versa.”[99] Hong Kong has the lowest rate of heeding official government opinions (举办和参与某项活动时在多大程度上要考虑政府官员的态度, 5.6%) and the highest percentage of civic activist XE "activist"  participation (47.4%). Shanghai has the highest percentage of heeding official government opinions (69.6%) and the lowest percentage of civic activism (社会批评7.8%). “Heeding official government opinion” is an indicator that the churches and church-related organizations follow government regulations and attitudes when they initiate or participate in an activity—that is, of the influence of the political and legal environment.

Table 4. The Relationship between Government Regulations and Civic Engagement (in percent)

Source: Zhidong Hao, Shun-hing Chan, Wen-ban Kuo, Yik Fei Tam, and Jing Ming, “Catholicism and Its Civic Engagement: Case Studies of the Catholic Church in Hong Kong, Macau, Taipei, and Shanghai,” Review of Religion and Chinese Society 1 (2014).

The differences among the four jurisdictions in social service XE "social service"  provision are small (from 74.5% to 78.9%), except in Hong Kong (96.5%). But this similarity may be misleading. We know for a fact that many more social services are provided in Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan than in mainland China, proportionately, than is indicated in the table.

We can say the same about the Christian Church in Greater China in general: the tighter the political and legal environment, the less civic activism XE "activism"  and social services XE "social services" . The extent to which the Christian Church believes in civil society XE "civil society"  values might also differ in different regions. Our research found that the more that the churches and church-related organizations believe in the appropriateness of airing their views on democratization XE "democratization"  (the prophetic role), the more likely it is that they will participate in civic activism XE "activism"  and vice versa (see Table 5).[100] Again, the difference between Hong Kong and Shanghai (92.9% vs. 51.0%) in this regard shows a stark contrast, and Macau and Taipei are between these extremes. The democratization value understandably influences civic activism. The number of people holding the same value differs among the four regions of Greater China, with Hong Kong the strongest as a CSO XE "CSO" .

But here I emphasize that, as mentioned earlier, in terms of values in general, there might not be much difference among churches in Greater China. That helps explain much of the Church’s political engagement and civic activism, XE "activism"  as well as social services, XE "social services"  although some of the variations might result from differences in values, such as the prophetic belief, which we now discuss.

The lower value of the prophetic role for the mainland Chinese Christian Church is not necessarily a result of political constraints. It may well be a problem of denominational diversity, and theology XE "theology"  and orientation to the world also matters.[101] Certain pietistic/fundamentalist XE "fundamentalist"  groups might reject involvement in “the world,” regardless of government restrictions. That is something on which further research is needed. As we point out in our research on the Catholic Church’s civic engagement in Greater China, individuals such as Wang Mingdao and Kung Pin-Mei also played important roles.[102] Political constraints should be studied alongside cultural (including denominational culture) and individual factors. These are all subjects for interesting research.

Table 5. The Effect of Prophetic Belief on Civic Activism (in percent)

Source: Zhidong Hao, Shun-hing Chan, Wen-ban Kuo, Yik Fei Tam, and Jing Ming, “Catholicism and Its Civic Engagement: Case Studies of the Catholic Church in Hong Kong, Macau, Taipei, and Shanghai,” Review of Religion and Chinese Society 1 (2014).

Nonetheless, considering the influence of the environment and values on their impact in terms of civic activism XE "activism"  and social service XE "social service" , the strength of the Christian churches as CSOs in different regions of Greater China are illustrated in Figure 2.2.

Figure 12: The Christian Church in Greater China as Weak and Strong CSOs

In mainland China, as Thomas Dubois, a professor at the Australian National University, comments, the government seems to recognize that religion can be useful, but it needs to create clear boundaries to indicate what religion can and cannot do.[103] For the foreseeable future, what it can do will continue to be dwarfed by what it did before 1949 and what the Christian Church in other parts of Greater China can do now.

But will Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan be able to continue their civic activism XE "activism"  and social service XE "social service"  activities? In Taiwan there seems to be little question, but it is less certain in Hong Kong and Macau.

In Hong Kong, the influence of the mainland was already felt in 2014, when the central government denied the appeals of Hong Kong society for universal suffrage XE "universal suffrage"  and, in 2015, when it arrested Hong Kong book publishers and sellers through clandestine and illegal means, in 2016, when the central government preempted the high court in Hong Kong in the oath-taking incident, and in 2019, when the Hong Kong government tried (and failed) to pass the extradition law, undermining XE "law"  Hong Kong’s legal system. The mainland domination culminated in 2020 when a national security law was imposed on Hong Kong and the freedom of speech and press freedom are greatly hampered. So, the political and legal environment in Hong Kong is increasingly unfriendly to civic activism XE "activism" . It remains to be seen how the church in general is going to be affected.

In Macau, pro-Beijing youth organizations are enticing young Catholics to join their various activities. As a result, the number of young Catholics is dwindling, and some Catholic youth organizations are being disbanded.[104] In 2014, two universities, including the University of St. Joseph, fired professors for their political views and activities, which does not bode well for the political environment in Macau.[105] In 2016, the deputy director of the Central Liaison Office, Xue Xiaofeng, visited the Catholic Schools Association. The association’s head and the deputy director both emphasized the need to “love the country and love Macau” [ao guo ai ao爱国爱澳] as a principle for running the schools even if they have different ways of expressing their school mission statements.[106] All these will affect people’s willingness to participate in civic activism XE "activism" , including Christians.

Even in Taiwan, the political, economic, XE "economic"  and social influence of the mainland can be clearly felt. In a paper presented at a Catholic Church meeting in 2016, one school principal frequently cited “General Secretary Xi Jinping XE "Xi Jinping" ” in remarks about innovations.[107]

Under these circumstances, will the Christian Church in mainland China make more inroads in civic activism XE "activism"  and social service XE "social service" , functioning like a real CSO XE "CSO" ? Will Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan be able to keep it up? Only time will tell.

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Wood, James R., and Jon P. Bloch. 1995. “The Role of Church Assemblies in Building a Civil Society: The Case of the United Methodist General Conference’s Debate on Homosexuality.” Sociology of Religion 56, no. 2: 121–36.

Yang, Fenggang. 2016. “Exceptionalism or Chinamerica: Measuring Religious Change in the Globalizing World.” Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion 55, no. 1: 7–22.

Ying, Fuk-Tsang. 2014. “The CPC XE "CPC" 's Policy on Protestant Christianity, 1949–1957: An Overview and Assessment.” Journal of Contemporary China 23, no. 89: 884–901.

Zhang, Xiaoyi. 2016. “Xuhui zhongxue ‘chongsilou’ shejizhe Ye Zhaochang yu Tushanwan yuedui 徐汇中学‘崇思楼’设计者叶肇昌与土山湾乐队 [Ye Zhaochang, the Designer of Chongsi Building and the Tushanwan Band].” Paper presented at the conference on Christianity and education in modern China, Shanghai University, October 29–30.

Zhao, Sile. 2015. “Fuchao: Zhongguo quanli NGO shengsijie 覆巢:中国权利NGO生死劫 [Overturned Nest: The Life and Death of China’s Rights Advocacy NGOs].” September 15. Available at https://theinitium.com/article/20150915-mainland-NGO1/, accessed September 27, 2016.

Zhonghua Renmin Gongheguo Aomen Tebie Xingzheng Qu Jiben Fa 中华人民共和国澳门特别行政区基本法 [The People’s Republic of China XE "Republic of China"  Macao Special Administration Region Basic Law] XE "Basic Law" . 1993. Government of Macao Special Administrative Region, http://bo.io.gov.mo/bo/i/1999/leibasica/index_cn.asp, accessed November 22, 2016.

Zhonghua Renmin Gongheguo Xianggang Tebie Xingzheng Qu jibenfa 中华人民共和国香港特别行政区基本法 [The People’s Republic of China XE "Republic of China"  Hong Kong Special Administration Region Basic Law] XE "Basic Law" . 1997. Central People’s Government of the People’s Republic of China, http://www.gov.cn/test/2005–07/29/content_18298.htm, accessed November 22, 2016.

Zhonghua Renmin Gongheguo Jingwai Fei Zhengfu Zuzhi Jingnei Huodong Quanli Fa中华人民共和国境外非政府组织境内活动管理法 [A Law XE "law"  of the PRC on the Management of Foreign NGOs Working in China]. 2016. Xinhua, April 29, http://news.xinhuanet.com/legal/2016–04/29/c_1118765888.htm, accessed November 22, 2016.


[1] This paper has been published as chapter 2 in Shun-hing Chan and Jonathan W. Johnson (eds.) Citizens of Two Kingdoms: Civil Society and Christian Religion in Greater China (Leidon/Boston: Brill, 2021), pp. 32-74. In this version I have added some figures that were cut in the printed version. I have changed the table and figure numbers for smooth reading and corrected a typographical error. I want to thank Prof. Chan for organizing the original conference where I presented the paper and the peer-reviewers for their revision comments. I’d also like to thank co-editor Prof. Jonathan W. Johnson and other editors at Brill for their painstaking work for the paper to be presented in its most professional fashion.

[2] See, e.g., Zhidong Hao and Yan Liu, “Mutual Accommodation in Church-State Relationship in China? A Case Study of the Sanjiang Church Demolition in Zhejiang,” Review of Religion and Chinese Society, no. 5 (2018); UCA News, “Chinese Christians Warned Not to Speak about Persecution,” July 9, 2019, at https://www.ucanews.com/news/chinese-christians-warned-not-to-speak-about-persecution/85595/, accessed July 14, 2019.

[3] CIVICUS XE "CIVICUS" , “Who We Are,” http://www.civicus.org/index.php/who-we-are/, accessed November 20, 2016; SIDA (Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency), “Civil Society Index: Documentation of Seminar on CSI XE "CSI" , a Participatory Tool for Strengthening the Civil Society,” May 2007.

[4] See also SIDA, “Civil Society Index”; Helmut K. Anheier, “Reflections on the Concept of and Measurement of Global Civil Society,” Voluntas 18 (2007): 3–5.

[5] Jürgen Habermas, “Further Reflections on the Public Sphere XE "Public Sphere" ,” in Habermas and the Public Sphere, ed. Craig Calhoun, (Cambridge: MIT Press, 1989), 453–54. See also James R. Wood and Jon P. Bloch, “The Role of Church Assemblies in Building a Civil Society: The Case of the United Methodist General Conference’s Debate on Homosexuality,” Sociology of Religion 56, No. 2(1995):121-136.

[6] See also Adam B. Seligman, The Idea of Civil Society (New York: Free Press, 1992), 201.

[7] Cited in Richard Madsen, China’s Catholics: Tragedy and Hope in an Emerging Civil Society (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1998), 14; see Robert D. Putnam, Making Democracy Work: Civic Traditions in Modern Italy (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1993), 87–90.

[8] Anheier, “Reflections on the Concept,” 5, 11–12.

[9] Seligman, The Idea of Civil Society, ix, 66, 186, 203.

[10] “In 2012 CIVICUS XE "CIVICUS"  developed our new Civil Society Rapid Assessment tool, with the aim of better understanding and supporting the new forms and dynamics that are defining civil society XE "civil society"  in different contexts.” See http://www.civicus.org/.CIVICUS20/index.php/en/what-we-do-126/2014-04-25-03-26-23/csi-ra/, accessed November 20, 2016. The main ideas, however, are the same.

[11] Sabine Reimer, “Civil Society and Its Measurement in an International Research Project: Methodological Issues Emanating from the Conducted German Analysis,” http://www.crida-fr.org/03_actualites/streams/M%20-%20ISTR-EMES%20Reimer.doc, accessed September 23, 2008. For examples using CSI XE "CSI"  in analyzing civil societies in Greater China, see Hao Zhidong. “Gongmin shehui zhishu jieshao: Jianlun Aomen gongmin shehui 公民社会指数介绍:兼论澳门公民社会[An Introduction to the Civil Society XE "civil society"  Index and Exploration on Civil Society in Macau],” in Gongmin shehui: Zhongguo dalu yu Gang Ao Tai 公民社会 XE "公民社会" :中国大陆与港澳台 [Civil Society: Mainland China, Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan], ed. Hao Zhidong (Singapore: World Scientific and Macau: University of Macau, 2013); Jia Xijin. “Zhongguo gongmin shehui de xianzhuang yu qianjing中国公民社会的现状与前景 [The Current Status of and Future Prospects for Civil Society in China], a talk delivered at Tianze Shuangzhou Luntan [Biweekly forum of Tianze], February 29, 2008; Choi Hai-wei, Chan Tsu-wei, Chan Yi-wen, Chan Chin-tang, and Chan Kin Man, “Gongmin shehui zhishu: Xianggang tebie xingzhengqu baogao jianjie公民社会指数:香港特别行政区报告简介  [Civil Society Index: An Introduction to Hong Kong Special Administrative Zone],” at http://www.hkcss.org.hk/cb4/csi/060429speech/ Workshop-hksar_intro_chi.ppt, accessed November 15, 2009.

[12] Liu Peng, “Zhongguo you duoshao jidujiaotu 中国有多少基督教徒?[How Many Christians Are There in China?], at Aisixiang Net, http://www.aisixiang.com/data/71912.html, January 28, 2014.  

[13] Fenggang Yang, “Exceptionalism or Chinamerica: Measuring Religious Change in the Globalizing World,” Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion 55, no. 1 (2016): 9–10.

[14] Fenggang Yang, “Exceptionalism or Chinamerica,” 9–10. Li Xiangping reports that according to official statistics XE "statistics" , by January 2013, there were 5,500 religious organizations in China, with religious personnel of 360,000 and a following in the range of 100 million and 300 million. There were 140,000 sites for religious activities and close to 100 religious personnel training schools, with 40,000 graduates. See Li Xiangping, “’Shetuan’ yu ‘faren’ de shuangchong jiangou  ‘社团’与‘法人’的双重建构 [Construction of a Double Identity of Social Groups and Legal Entities],” Renmin University Reprinted Materials, http://rd.nje.cn/Qw/Paper/581915/, accessed November 22, 2016.

[15] See Madsen, China’s Catholics, 6–8, 16; idem, “Catholic Revival during the Reform Era,” China Quarterly, no. 174.

[16] Ian Johnson, “China Seeks Tighter Grip in Wake of a Religious Revival,” New York Times, October 7, 2016.

[17] Liu Peng, “Zhongguo you duoshao jidujiaotu?”

[18] Shun-hing Chan, “Changing Church-State Relations in Contemporary China: The Case of Wenzhou Diocese XE "Diocese" ,” International Sociology 31, no. 4 (2016): 497–99.

[19] Jason Horowitz and Ian Johnson, “China and Vatican XE "Vatican"  Reach Deal on Appointments of Bishops,” New York Times, September 22, 2018,  A1; UCA News, “Amid Tensions in China, Vatican Tells Clergy to Follow Their Conscience,” July 1, 2019, https://www.ucanews.com/news/amid-tensions-in-china-vatican-tells-clergy-to-follow-their-conscience/85533/, accessed July 14, 2019.

[20] Wei Dedong and Wang Weidong, “Yindao yu shiying: Zhongguo Renmin Daxue ‘Zhonguo zongjiao diaocha baogao (2015)’ 引导与适应:中国人民大学 ‘中国宗教调查报告(2015)’  [Direct and Adapt: Renmin University’s Report on Chinese Religions in 2015],”  in Zhongguo zongjiao baogao (2015)  中国宗教报告(2015)[Annual Report on Religions in China (2015)], ed. Qiu Yonghui (Beijing: Shehui kexue wenxian chubanshe, 2016), 324.

[21] Liu Guopeng, “2013 nian Zhongguo tianzhujiao xianzhuang ji fenxi 2013 年中国天主教现状及分析[Analysis on the Status of China’s Catholic Church in 2013],” in Zhongguo zongjaio baoguo (2014), 127–31.       

[22]  Liu Guopeng, “2014 nian Zhongguo tianzhujiao fazhan zhuangkuang ji dui kangzhan qijian tianzhujiao rendao zhuyi yuanzhu de jiazhi chongu  2014年中国天主教发展状况及对抗战期间天主教人道主义援助的价值重估 [Report on the Status of the Catholic Church’s Development and Re-Evaluation of the Catholic Church’s Humanitarian Aid in the Anti-Japanese XE "Japanese"  War in China in 2014], in Zhongguo zongjiao baogao (2015), ed. Qiu Yonghui, 156–60.

[23] Tang Xiaofeng and Duan Qi, “2013 nian Zhongguo jidujiao gaikuang ji jidujao de minjianhua baogao 2013年中国基督教概况及基督教的民间化报告 [A Report on the Basic Situation of the Protestant Church and Its Localization in 2013],”  in Zhongguo zongjiao baogao (2014) 中国宗教报告(2014) [Annual Report on Religions in China (2014)], ed. Qiu Yonghui  (Beijing: Shehui kexue wenxian chubanshe, 2016) , 21.

[24] Madsen, “Catholic Revival during the Reform Era,” 166.

[25] At the time of this writing, we have not found any new information in later yearbooks about further exchanges. It is possible that they are just not reported, but it is more likely that there are fewer of them now.

[26] Liu Guopeng, “2013 nian Zhongguo tianzhujiao xianzhuang ji fenxi 2013 年中国天主教现状及分析 [Analysis on the Status of China’s Catholic Church in 2013],” in Zhongguo zongjiao baogao (2014)  中国宗教报告(2014)[Annual Report on Religions in China in 2014], ed. Qiu Yonghui (Beijing: Shehui kexue wenxian chubanshe, 2015), 117–27.       

[27] Fuk-Tsang Ying, “The CPC XE "CPC" ’s Policy on Protestant Christianity, 1949–1957: An Overview and Assessment,” Journal of Contemporary China, 23, no. 89 (2014): 13.

[28] For more on the history of the issues, see Paul P. Mariani, Church Militant: Bishop Kung and Catholic Resistance in Communist Shanghai (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 2011), 223–24.

[29] Shun-hing Chan, “Jidu zongjiao zai Xianggang gongmin shehui jiangou zhong de juese基督宗教在香港公民社会建构中的角色 [The Role of the Christian Church in Building Civil Society XE "civil society"  in Hong Kong], in Gongmin shehui: Zhongguo dalu yu Gang Ao Tai公民社会 XE "公民社会" :中国大陆与港澳台 [Civil Society: Mainland China, Hong Kong, Macao, and Taiwan], ed. Hao Zhidong (Singapore and Macao: World Scientific Press and the University of Macau, 2013), 226–27.

[30] UCA News, “Zongjiao jie  shengming fan xiu minfa hui hunyin jiating, Daojiao bu paichu wei lifayuan 宗教界声明反修民法毁婚姻家庭,道教不排除围立法院 [Various Religious Groups Declare Their Position against the Legislation That May Destroy Marriage and Family, and the Daoist Groups Say They Might Surround the Legislative Yuan in Protest] XE "protest" ,” UCAN news, http://china.ucanews.com/2016/12/01/, accessed December 2, 2016.

[31] Johnson, “China Seeks Tighter Grip in Wake of a Religious Revival.”

[32] Tang Xiaofeng and Duan Qi, “2013 nian Zhongguojidujao gaikuang ji jidujiao de minjianhua baogao ,” 100.

[33] Li Xiangping, “‘Shetuan’ yu ‘faren’de shuangchong jiangou.”

[34] Wei and Wang, “Yindao yu shiying,” 325.

[35] Wei and Wang, “Yindao yu shiying,“ 326.

[36] John S.T. Chu and volunteers (ed.), 2013 nian Taiwan jidujiaohui jiaoshi baogao  ,” 1. 

[37] Zhidong Hao, Shun-hing Chan, Wen-ban Kuo, Yik Fai Tam, and Ming Jing, “Catholicism and Its Civic Engagement: Case Studies of the Catholic Church in Hong Kong, Macau, Taipei, and Shanghai,” Review of Religion and Chinese Society 1 (2014): 58.

[38] For information on this paragraph, see Chen Xi, “Mingjing yuekan dujia kanfa zhonggong jiuhao wenjian 明镜月刊独家刊发中共9号文件 [Mirror Monthly Publishes Document No. 9 in Its Totality],” Molihua.org, September 22, 2013, http://www.molihua.org/2013/08/9_7925.html, accessed September 27, 2016; Zhidong Hao and Zhengyang Guo, “Professors as Intellectuals in China: Political Identities and Roles in a Provincial University,” China Quarterly (2016), doi:10.1017/S0305741016001442; Mi Qiang, “Zhongguo gongmin shehui zaoyu ‘handong’ 中国公民社会遭遇‘寒冬’ [China’s Civil Society XE "civil society"  Is Encountering a Bitter Winter], Financial Times, August 21, 2016, http://www.ftchinese.com/story/001069004?full=y/, accessed November 22, 2016; Chris Buckley, “A Tibetan XE "Tibetan"  Tried to Save His Language. China Handed Him 5 Years in Prison,” New York Times, May 22, 2018;  Zhao Sile, “Fuchao: Zhongguo quanli NGO sheng si jie 覆巢:中国权利NGO生死劫 [Overturned Nest: The Life and Death of China’s Rights Advocacy NGOs],” September 19, 2015, https://theinitium.com/article/20150915-mainland-NGO1/, accessed September 27, 2016.

[39] Edward Wong, “China Approves Strict Control of Foreign NGOs,” New York Times, April 28, 2016; Xinhua News, “Zhonghua Renmin Gongheguo Jingwai Fei Zhengfu Zuzhi Jingnei Huodong Guanli Fa 中华人民共和国境外非政府组织境内活动管理法 [A Law XE "law"  of the PRC on the Management of Foreign NGOs Working in China],” http://news.xinhuanet.com/legal/2016-04/29/c_1118765888.htm, accessed November 22, 2016.

[40] Johnson, “China Seeks Tighter Grip in Wake of a Religious Revival.”  

[41] China Aid, “Anhui zhili jiating jiaohui fang’an puguang, ‘sige yipi’ cheng fang’an hexin 安徽治理家庭教会方案曝光 ‘四个一批’成方案核心 [The Way to Deal with House Churches XE "house churches"  in Anhui: Four Key Strategies],” http://www.chinaaid.net/2016/10/blog-post_37.html, accessed November 22, 2016.

[42] Mimi Lau, “China Shuts Leading Underground XE "Underground"  Christian Church, Third This Winter,” South China Morning Post, December 16, 2018,  https://www.scmp.com/news/china/society/article/2178216/china-shuts-leading-underground XE "underground" -christian-church-third-winter/, accessed July 15, 2019; Ian Johnson, “This Chinese Christian Was Charged with Trying to Subvert the State,” New York Times, March 24, 2019, A9.

[43] UCA News, “Underground XE "Underground"  China Church Faces Demolition,” May 13, 2019, https://www.ucanews.com/news/underground XE "underground" -china-church-faces-demolition XE "demolition" /85168/, accessed July 15, 2019.

[44] For the draft of the religious regulations and the discussion, see Hao Liguan, “2016 nian zongjiao shiwu tiaoli xiuding caoan zuixin song shen gao 2016年宗教事务条例修订草案最新送审稿 [2016 Draft Rules and Regulations Regarding Religious Affairs to Be Approved],” Pincai net, http://www.pincai.com/group/878775.htm, accessed November 22, 2016; Johnson, “China Seeks Tighter Grip in Wake of a Religious Revival.”

[45] Central People’s Government of the People’s Republic of China XE "Republic of China" , “Zhonghua Renmin Gongheguo Xianggang Tebie Xingzhengqu Jiben Fa 中华人民共和国香港特别行政区基本法 [The People’s Republic of China Hong Kong Special Administration Region Basic Law] XE "Basic Law" ,” http://www.gov.cn/test/2005-07/29/content_18298.htm, accessed November 22, 2016.

[46] Government of Macao Special Administrative Region, “Zhonghua Renmin Gongheguo Aomen Tebie Xingzhengqu Jiben Fa  中华人民共和国澳门特别行政区基本法 [The People’s Republic of China XE "Republic of China"  Macao Special Administration Region Basic Law] XE "Basic Law" ,” http://bo.io.gov.mo/bo/i/1999/leibasica/index_cn.asp, accessed November 22, 2016.

[47] See Li Guiling, “Taiwan zongjiao 台湾宗教 [Religion in Taiwan],” Po Lin Monastery, http://hk.plm.org.cn/gnews/2009627/2009627135014.html, accessed November 23, 2016.

[48] See, e.g., Madsen’s discussion on the Catholic Church, in Madsen, China’s Catholics, 26–29.

[49] Li Xiangping, “‘Shetuan’ yu ‘faren’de shuangchong jiangou .”

[50] Elisabetta Povoledo and Liam Stack, “People Francis Extends Priests’ Ability to Forgive Abortion,” New York Times, November 21, 2016.

[51] For an analysis of the Vatican XE "Vatican"  II XE "Vatican II"  teachings, see Chan Hon Fai, “Gongmin quanli yu renge zhuyi: Aomen tianzhujiao yu gongmin shehui chutan 公民权利与人格主义:澳门天主教与公民社会初探 [Citizen Rights and Personalism: Macao’s Catholic Church and Civil Society] XE "civil society" ,” in Gongmin shehui: Zhongguo dalu yu Gang Ao Tai 公民社会 XE "公民社会" :中国大陆与港澳台 [Civil Society: Mainland China, Hong Kong, Macao, and Taiwan], ed. Hao Zhidong (Singapore and Macao: World Scientific Press and the University of Macau, 2013).

[52] Jose Casanova, “2000 Presidential Address: Religion, the New Millennium, and Globalization,” Sociology of Religion 62 (2001).

[53] Michael McCabe, “The Role of the Church in Civil Society: Some Theological Orientations,” Africa Mission, www.africamission-mafr.org/mccabe_gb.doc, accessed November 24, 2016.

[54] Povoledo and Stack, “Pope XE "Pope"   Francis Extends Priests’ Ability to Forgiven Abortion.”

[55] See a summary by Hao Zhidong, “Zongjiao de shehui gongneng yu Zhongguo zongjiao zhengce gaige 宗教的社会功能与中国宗教政策改革 [The Social Function of Religion and the Reform of Religious Policy in China],” Zongjiao yu fazhi  宗教与法治 [Religion and the Rule of Law], no. 8 (2016).

[56] Shun-hing Chan, “Changing Church-State Relations in Contemporary China,” 501.

[57] Nanlai Cao, “Christian Entrepreneurs and the Post-Mao State: An Ethnographic Account of Church-State Relations in China’s Economic Transition,” Sociology of Religion 68, no. 1 (2007): 48, 55.

[58] Cao, “Christian Entrepreneurs and the Post-Mao State,” 56.

[59] Fuk-Tsang Ying, “The CPC XE "CPC" ’s Policy on Protestant Christianity, 1949–1957,” 4.

[60]  Zhidong Hao et al., “Catholicism and Its Civic Engagement,” 54.

[61] Mariani, Church Militant, 41–42.

[62] Fuk-Tsang Ying, “The CPC XE "CPC" ’s Policy on Protestant Christianity, 1949–1957,” 6.

[63] Nanlai Cao, “Christian Entrepreneurs and the Post-Mao State.”

[64] Shun-hing Chan, “Changing Church-State Relations in Contemporary China,” 494.

[65] Matt Moir, “China’s Efforts to Mold Christianity in Its Own Image Draw Resistance,” Religion News Service, http://religionnews.com/2016/03/08/chinas-efforts-mold-christianity-in-its-own-image-face-resistance/, accessed November 21, 2016.

[66] See also Zhidong Hao and Yan Liu, “Mutual Accommodation in Church-State Relationship in China?” For more examples of Christian resistance in China under Xi Jinping XE "Xi Jinping" , see also Carsten Vala, “Protestant Resistance and Activism in China’s Official Churches,” in Handbook of Protest and Resistance in China, ed. Teresa Wright (Cheltenham, UK: Edward Elgar, 2019).


[67] Shun-hing Chan, “Jiduzongjiao zai Xianggang gongmin shehui jiangou zhong de juese ,” 226.

[68] Chan, “Jiduzongjiao zai Xianggang,” 226–27, 229–30.

[69] Chan, “Jiduzongjiao zai Xianggang,” 227–28, 230–31.

[70] June Cheng, “How Many Christians Live in Hong Kong.”

[71] Fuk-Tsang Ying, Facebook news, “Yiqun Xianggang jidutu huyu quanguo renda changweihui tingzhi shifa lianshu 一群香港基督徒呼吁全国人大常委会停止释法联署 [A Group of Christians Call on the National People’s Congress XE "People’s Congress" ’s Standing Committee to Stop Legal Interpretation of the Hong Kong Basic Law] XE "Hong Kong Basic Law" ,” November 5, 2016.

[72] UCA News, “Zhongyang shifa zu gangdu yiyuan jiuren, jiaohui renshi zhi shifa cuihui gang fazhi 中央释法阻港独议员就任,教会人士指释法摧毁港法制 [Church People Say That the Central Government’s Interpretation of the Law XE "law"  Is Destroying Hong Kong’s Legal System],” http://china.ucanews.com/2016/11/07/, accessed November 21, 2016.

[73] UCA News, “Xuanshi sifa fuhe xuanpan qianxi, Xianggang zhuli zhujiao dui shifa biao yihan 宣誓司法复核宣判前夕,香港助理主教对释法表遗憾 [Hong Kong Coadjutor Bishop Laments the National People’s Congress XE "People’s Congress" ’s Decision to Interpret the Hong Kong Basic Law XE "Hong Kong Basic Law"  before the Hong Kong Court Can Make a Decision on the Pleading Controversy],”  http://china.ucanews.com/2016/11/16/, accessed November 24, 2016.

[74] Ren Jichun, “Xianggang zongjiao de shehui diwei he zuoyong qianxi 香港宗教的社会地位和作用浅析 [A Brief Analysis of the Status and Roles of Religion in Hong Kong],” Zongjiao yu shijie 宗教与世界 [Religion and the World],  no. 1 (2005), reprinted at Po Lin Monastery, http://hk.plm.org.cn/gnews/2009522/2009522128249.html, accessed November 24, 2016.

[75] For a discussion of the Macao case, see Chan Hong Fai, “Gongmin quanli yu renge zhuyi XE "civil society" ,” 213; Zhidong Hao, Macau History and Society (Hong Kong: Hong Kong University Press and the University of Macau, 2011), 129–30.

[76] Chiu Hei Yuan, “Taiwan de zongjiao bianqian, zhengzhi minzhuhua yu gongmin shehui 台湾的宗教变迁、政治民主化与公民社会 [Taiwan’s Religious Transformation, Political Democratization XE "democratization" , and Civil Society] XE "civil society" ,” in Gongmin shehui, ed. Hao, 236–38.

[77] Lin Pen Hsuan, “Taiwan de zongjiaoxingzheng yu zongjiao lifa wenti”; LiGuiling, “Taiwan zongjiao.”

[78] UCA News, “Taiwan jidutu zai zongtongfu qian gaohan ‘hunyin jiating, quanmin jueding’ 台湾基督徒在总统府前高喊‘婚姻家庭,全民决定’ [Taiwan Christians Shout in Front of the Presidential Palace: ‘Marriage and Family Issues Should Be Decided by a Referendum’ XE "referendum" ],” http://www.ccccn.org/haiwai/2016-11-16/56478.html, November 16, 2016.

[79] Liu Guopeng, “2013 nian Zhongguo tianzhujiao xianzhuang ji fenxi”119–20.

[80] Tang Xiaofeng and Duan Qi, “2013 nian Zhongguo jidujao gaikuang ji jidujiao de minjianhua baogao ,” 100.

[81] Duan Qi, “2014 nian Zhongguo jidujiao guanzhudian  2014年中国基督教关注点 [2013 Development of the Protestant Church],” in Zhongguo zongjiao baogao (2015) 中国宗教报告(2015)[Annual Report on Religions in China in 2015], ed. Qiu Yonghui (Beijing: Shehui kexue wenxian chubanshe, 2016), 123–26.

[82] Duan Qi, “2014 nian Zhongguo jidujiao Guanzhudian,” 126–32.

[83] Nanlai Cao, “Christian Entrepreneurs and the Post-Mao State,” 56–57, 61.

[84] Fan Junming, “Jidujao dui Zhongguo jindai jiaoyu de yingxiang: Yi jiaohui xuexiao fazhan wei qisi 基督教对中国近代教育的影响:以教会学校发展为启思 [The Impact of Christianity on Modern Chinese Education: The Case of the Development of Religious Schools]” (paper presented at the conference on Christianity and education in modern China, Shanghai University, October 29–30, 2016), 217.

[85] Han Yuexiang, “Fansi jindai Zhongguo fei jidujiao yundong shouhui jiaoyuquan yundong zhi liju反思近代中国非基督教运动收回教育权运动之理据 [Reflections on the Reasons that the Chinese Anti-Christian Movement Wanted to Take Back the Right to Educate Chinese]” (paper presented at the conference on Christianity and education in modern China, Shanghai University,  October 29–30, 2016), 237.

[86] Wang Shuofeng, “Zaoqi jidujiao zai Shaanxi banxue qingkuang jiqi jiaoyu linian he yingxiang: Yi Xi’an shi sanzhong qianshen ‘zunde zhongxue’ wei li早期基督教在陕西办学情况及其教育理念和影响:以西安市三中前身‘尊德中学’为例 [The Christian Church’s Educational Efforts in Shaanxi in Earlier Days and Their Educational Thoughts and Impacts: The Case of Zunde Middle School, Currently the Third Middle School in Xi’an City]” (paper presented at the conference on Christianity and education in modern China, Shanghai University, October 29–30, 2016), 203–13.

[87] Jennifer Bond, “Foreign Puppets, Christian Mothers or Revolutionary Martyrs? The Multiple Identities of Missionary School Students in Zhejiang, 1923–1949” (paper presented at the conference on Christianity and education in modern China, Shanghai University, October 29–30, 2016), 284–322.

[88] Zhang Xiaoyi, “Xuhui zhongxue ‘chongsilou’ shejizhe Ye Zhaochang yu Tushanwan yuedui 徐汇中学‘崇思楼’设计者叶肇昌与土山湾乐队 [Ye Zhaochang, the Designer of Chongsi building and the Tushanwan Band]” (paper presented at the conference on Christianity and education in modern China, Shanghai University,  October 29–30, 2016), 74–81.

[89] Gao Shining and He Guanghu, “Dangjin Zhongguo jidujiao de zhuyao wenti yu jiejue shexiang当今中国基督教的主要问题与解决设想 [The Main Problems with Christianity in China and Their Solutions],” a research report they presented to the CCP XE "CCP"  United Front Department, published in 2011. The data were from a number of sources according to their references. Available at Baidu wenku, https://wenku.baidu.com/view/0055f20a48d7c1c708a14598.html, accessed July 16, 2019.

[90] I’d like to thank Debra Soled, one of the editors of the chapter, for the points made in this paragraph, which further strengthened my point.

[91] June Cheng, “How Many Christians Live in Hong Kong”; RenJichun, “Xianggang zongjiao de shehui diwei he zuoyong qianxi  .”

[92] Ren Jichun, “Xianggang zongjiaode shehui diwei he zuoyong qianxi.”

[93] Hong Kong government, “Xianggang bianlan.”

[94] Macau Catholic Diocese XE "Diocese" , 2012 nian Tianzhujiao shouce 2012年天主教手册 [Handbook of the Catholic Church in Macau]. The numbers are based on the telephone and fax number section of the handbook, published by the Macau Catholic Church XE "Macau Catholic Church" .

[95] LiGuiling, “Taiwan zongjiao.”

[96] The Shilin Church of Jesus XE "Jesus"  the King website, http://www.catholic.org.tw/shilin/CatholicProfile.html, accessed November 27, 2016.

[97] The numbers are calculated from Fu Ren University’s website on the 2016 meeting organized by Tianzhujiao xuexiao xiaowu fazhan xiehui 天主教学校校务发展协会 [The Catholic Church Association for the Development of School Affairs] regarding Catholic schools in Taiwan, http://www.educ.fju.edu.tw/conference/2016/link.html, accessed November 27, 2016.

[98] Zhidong Hao et al., “Catholicism and Its Civic Engagement,” 63.

[99] Hao et al., “Catholicism and Its Civic Engagement,” 63.

[100] Hao et al. “Catholicism and Its Civic Engagement,” 67.

[101] I thank a reviewer for pointing this out.

[102] See Hao et al. “Catholicism and Its Civic Engagement.”

[103] Cited in Johnson, “China Seeks Tighter Grip in Wake of a Religious Revival.”

[104] UCA News, “Aomen shehui fuza duobian, qingnian xinyang mianlin tiaozhan  澳门社会复杂多变,青年信仰面临挑战 [Macao Society Is Changing and Youth Belief Is Facing Challenges],” http://china.ucanews.com, accessed July 5, 2013.

[105] Zhidong Hao, “Jiaoshou jiepin yu xueshu ziyou: Cong Aomen liangwei jiaoshou bei jiepin de shijian tanqi 教授解聘与学术自由: 从澳门两位教授被解聘的事件谈起 [Professors’ Dismissal and Academic Freedom: On the Sacking of Two Professors in Macau],” Financial Times 中文网 [The Chinese News Website of the Financial Times], November 25, 2014.

[106] Macau Daily, “Xue Xiaofeng san xiwang yu ai guo ai ao youcai 薛晓峰三希望育爱国爱澳优才 [Xue Xiaofeng Hopes That the Catholic Schools Will Raise Students Who Love China and Love Macau],” http://www.macaodaily.com/html/2016-12/01/content_1140195.htm, accessed December 1, 2016. See also Zhidong Hao, “Aomen jiaohui xuexiao zai Aomen shehui fazhan zhong de zuoyong: Zhongdeng jiaoyu zhong jiaohui yu fei jiaohui xuexiao de duibi yanjiu 澳门教会学校在澳门社会发展中的作用:中等教育中教会与非教会学校的对比研究 [The Role of the Religious Schools in Macau’s Social Development: A Comparative Study of Religious and Non-Religious Schools in Middle School Education]” (paper presented at the conference on Christianity and education in modern China, Shanghai University, October 29–30, 2016), 82–91.

[107] Chen-Fang Lan 蓝振芳, “Chuangxin shidai de jiaoyu 创新时代的教育 [The Education in an Era of Innovation]” (paper presented at a symposium on leadership training organized by the association for development of Catholic schools, October 12–13, 2016).

发布时间:2021年04月19日 来源时间:2021年04月19日
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