Nothing has been heard from a Chinese Catholic priest missing for eight months after he was taken away by the authorities in December 2017, Catholic news agency UCAN reports.
All contact with Fr. Lu Danhua was lost after the personnel of Qingtian Religious Affairs Bureau visited him in his dormitory of Qingtian Catholic Church in Zhejiang province and took him away with them.
Answering enquiries about the priest’s location, the bureau has claimed he is in Wenzhou, studying new religious regulations, and that he will return to his diocese after legal registration.
“He has wholeheartedly taken care of the churches in Qingtian, Leishi, Dalu, Wanshan and Jingning in the diocese. He is willing to serve the weak. The church members are full of praise for his enthusiastic pastoral care,” a source said to UCAN.
Prayers, fasting and a Mass for the safety of Fr. Lu Danhua are being held on the 29th of each month – the December date the priest disappeared – this practice has been initiated by the ‘underground’ Bishop Peter Shao Zhumin.