What is the harm in making the extraordinary form of the Roman rite accessible to all?

I have read in the newspapers quite worrying news about possible restrictions to the celebration of the Tridentine Mass (what we now call the extraordinary form of the Roman rite).

I want to make it clear that I cannot be considered an extremist of this liturgical form and that I have worked actively, as a priest and as a bishop, for the liturgical reform after Vatican II, also trying to curb excesses and abuses, which unfortunately have not been lacking in my diocese. So I will not be accused of factiousness. But I cannot deny, in my experience in Hong Kong, the much good that has come from the motu proprio Summorum Pontificum and from the celebration of the Tridentine Mass. There is a faithful group here that for decades has participated in this form that comes to us from the liturgical riches of our Tradition, a group that has never created problems for the diocese and whose participants have never questioned the legitimacy of the renewed Mass. In the community that participates in the extraordinary form in Hong Kong, many young people have passed through, who through this Mass have rediscovered the sense of adoration and reverence that we owe to God, our Creator.

I have worked for liturgical reform, as I have said, but I cannot forget the Mass of my childhood, I cannot forget when as a child in Shanghai my father, a devout Catholic, took me to Mass every day and on Sundays he made me attend five Masses! I felt such reverence, I was so fascinated (and still am!) by the beauty of Gregorian chant, that I think that experience nourished my vocation to the priesthood, as it did for so many others. I remember the many Chinese faithful (and I don’t think all of them knew Latin…) participating in these liturgical ceremonies with great enthusiasm, just as I can now witness in the community that participates in the Tridentine Mass in Hong Kong.

The Tridentine Mass is not divisive; on the contrary, it unites us to our brothers and sisters of all ages, to the saints and martyrs of every time, to those who have fought for their faith and who have found in it inexhaustible spiritual nourishment.

(Translation by Bree A. Dail)

Open letter to Rev. Fr. Matthew Josekutty, CMF

Deputy Editor-in-chief of the Sunday Examiner

I gave you the dead-line 16 May, some kind person asked me to move it to 23 May, but what I find now is no apology at all.

Please, you can ignore me, but don’t take me for a fool.

You say: the two articles were neither the official stand of the Church nor of the Sunday Examiner, and you apologize for the confusion created.

What confusion? Have you made them to appear as the official stand of the Church? Have you made them to appear as the official stand of Sunday Examiner? No, you did not.

What you did and for which you have to apologize is the fact that you have willfully chosen to publish those two articles, one of which is an arrogant and preposterous insult to the two popes we so deeply venerate and love, and the other is a biased and untruthful criticism of a CDF statement, which is faithful to Catholic moral teaching that homosexual partnership can not be blessed as marriage, but in the same time (as you were forced to admit in your following piece of news) it calls the Christian community to welcome with respect and sensitivity persons with homosexual inclinations, because no one can be excluded from the care and love of the Church.

I am justified to say that you did it willfully and not as a casual overlook, because you had thousand possibilities of choice, but you chose those two poisonous pieces.

It betrays a seriously wrong mindset, for which you (or the one who has to take the responsibility for you) are to be considered as a dangerous person and unfit for the job, which is to give healthy food to the faithful who read this our paper.

Either you resign or I should warn the faithful to avoid reading the paper.

An enraged old man

Cardinal Joseph Zen





每當我來到羅馬,正正是在聖伯多祿大殿開的私人彌撒最能堅定我的信念:準時七點,我進入祭衣房〔我幾乎總會碰到原為總主教的保祿.薩爾迪樞機(Paolo Sardi),這位充滿聖德的人〕,有年輕神父會趨前,助我穿上祭披,然後他們會領我到一個祭台(在大殿內或在墓室中,但這對我毫無分別,我們就在聖伯多祿大殿!)我認為這些彌撒,是我生命中最充滿情感和情緒的祭獻,有時還在淚中為我們在中國活著的殉道者祈禱(他們如今已被羅馬教廷拋棄,並推入分裂教會的懷抱〔2020年6月那份文件也來自羅馬教廷,沒有署名和沒有經信理部審視〕。)






(由Lucia Cheung翻譯)

Open Letter to Cardinal Sarah

To His Eminence

Card. Robert Sarah

Dear Eminence,

Pain and indignation invade my heart to hear certain incredible news: They have forbidden private masses in St. Peter’s!?

If it were not for the restrictions imposed by the Coronavirus, I would take the first flight to come to Rome and get on my knees in front of the door of Santa Marta (now the Papal residence) until the Holy Father has this edict withdrawn.

It was the thing that strengthened my faith most every time I came to Rome: at exactly seven o’clock I would enter the sacristy (where I almost always would meet that holy man, the Archbishop, then Cardinal Paolo Sardi); a young priest would come forward and would help me to dress in the vestments, and then they take me to an altar (in the Basilica proper or in the grottoes, that would make no difference to me, we were in St. Peter’s Basilica!). I think these were the masses that, in my life, I celebrated with more fervor and emotion, sometimes with tears praying for our living martyrs in China (now abandoned and pushed into the bosom of the schismatic church by the “Holy See” [as that document of June 2020 was presented without signatures and without the revisions of the Congregation for Doctrine]).

It is time to reduce the excessive power of the Secretariat of State. Remove these sacrilegious hands from the communal home for all the Faithful in the world! Let them content themselves with playing worldly diplomacy with the father of lies. Let them make the Secretariat of State “a den of thieves”, But leave the devoted people of God alone!

“It was night!” (John 13:30)

Your Brother

Joseph Zen, SDB

Translation by Bree A. Dail

Lettera aperta al Cardinale Sarah

A Sua Eminenza

Card. Robert Sarah

Care Eminenza,

Dolore ed indignazione invadono il mio cuore a sentire certe incredibili notizie: hanno proibito le messe private in S. Pietro!?

Se non fosse per le restrizioni imposte dalla Coronavirus io prenderei il primo volo per venire a Roma e mettermi in ginocchio davanti alla porta di Santa Marta finchè il Santo Padre faccia ritirare quell’editto.

Era la cosa che più fortificava la mia fede ogni volta che venivo a Roma: alle sette precise si entra in sagrestia (incontravo quasi sempre il sant’uomo, l’Arcivescovo e poi Cardinale Paolo Sardi), un giovane prete si fa avanti e mi aiuta a vestire i paramenti, poi mi portano ad un altare (in Basilica o nelle grotte non fa differenza per me, siamo nella Basilica di San Pietro!). Penso che sono state le messe che, in vita mia, ho celebrato con più fervore e commozione, qualche volta con le lacrime pregando per i nostri martiri viventi in Cina (ora abbandonati e spinti nel seno della chiesa scismatica dalla “Santa Sede” [cosi si presentava quel documento del giugno 2020 senza firme e senza la revisione della Congregazione per la Dottrina]).

È momento di ridimensionare lo strapotere della Segreteria di Stato. Via le mani sacrileghe dalla casa commune di tutti i fedeli del mondo! Si accontentino di giuocare la diplomazia mondana con il padre della menzogna. Facciano pure della Segreteria di Stato “un covo di ladri”, Ma lascino in pace il devoto popolo di Dio!

“Era notte!” (Giovanni 13:30)

suo fratello

Giuseppe Zen, SDB



















對於我的聖召,母親也起著重要的影響,就是她親自送我到畢會長那裡。她後來更看到會長對我父親的好(當天爸爸到了備修院門口,畢會長就著幾位修士扛起爸爸坐著的椅子送他到小堂、餐廳、操場),又看到我變得生性 —— 尤其是在爸爸過世之後我從備修院寫給媽媽的那封信,讓她很感動、很安慰。










至少今天我們應該紀念一下畢少懷神父 一月三日是他逝世50周年




















ICLN(2020)第二次視頻會議 -「疫症過後如何重建人類」




「疫症過後的全球化:中美的角色 ── 分析與行動」































Second video conference ICLN (2020) – “Preparing for Post-Pandemic Humanity”


Second video conference ICLN (2020)

“Preparing for Post-Pandemic Humanity”

“Post Pandemic Globalization: the Role of China and the United States – Analysis and Action”

Input by Cardinal Joseph Zen

(heavily edited)

This is a short reflection on the tragic reality which is still in the happening: a pandemic of apocalyptical dimension causing incalculable loss of lives and of economic resources. We don’t see the end of it yet, but we can and must take stock of some obvious facts and analyse their cause-effect relation. Only by doing so we can prepare ourselves for the rebuilding of our society and providing new defences in the future for our humanity.

The fact is: a pandemic started in China and it spread quickly over the whole world.

The analysis: it must have something to do with globalization. Globalization is a fact and the enormously increased mobility of the people explains, in part, the fast spreading of the pandemic. But the modern progress in communication could provide timely alarm and contain that spreading. Obviously something went wrong.

Let us remember that the globalization is an ambivalent phenomenon, it may be good, it may be bad, it depends on the way we manage it.

Pope John Paul II used to distinguish a “globalization of solidarity” from a “globalization of marginalization”, one is operated by people who care for the real good of all human beings, the other is driven by selfish interest of individuals and groups.

It is opportune also to remember what has been said by Pope Paul VI:

The real progress is when everybody progress and the whole human being progresses.

With those premises let us come to examine the actual reality especially with reference to China.

Many people welcomed the arrival of globalization: with the world becoming a “village”, a “big family” cooperation and mutual help would make the world better, the rich and strong can help the poor and the weak. But, alas, the actual outcome was much disappointing. Some question may help us to think: “Why, e.g., all those, often bloody, protests at the venues of meetings of world trade organization?” The answer is: the poor of the poor countries did not feel they got any help from this globalized economy of the world. Those running the economic globalization are the world’s rich and strong, World Bank, International Monetary Fund etc., they are meant to help the poor countries, but too often they end up by helping the Governments of the poor countries, the rich and powerful people in those countries, not the poor people, because the poor people of the poor countries have not been invited to take active part in the process.

The managers of the globalization plan the world economy with scarce consideration of the real local situation and needs. Local governments and other operators, rich and powerful, may be more interested in getting the money into their own pockets rather than helping the poor people of their country.

At the moment when all this was becoming evident, China entered into the world scene, once a poor nation now rich and strong, model and leader of Asian and African nations. China brought them the hope in a more just, equitable, prosperous society.

There is much to be discussed about such perception. Has China become really rich and strong? We have to distinguish between the people and the nation. China became rich and strong, because its people are hard working and fast learning. China being the most populous community became a huge provider of labor in the world, capable of gigantic production and brings money to the nation’s coffers.

But what about the people? In a totalitarian regime the people contribute to the wealth of the nation, but they don’t get a fair share in its prosperity. In China the people are slaves under the Communist Party. To slaves it is not allowed the luxury of dignity. Under the dominion and bad example of their masters, the Chinese people have lost their traditional virtues. In a world of “struggle for survival” they make recourse to lies and violence, just like their masters. China became a threat to the world.

The world must have had opportunity to be aware of all this, but they may have never heard about the duty of the “ethical investment” and “ethical consumption”, until they realize that they were accomplices in nourishing a dangerous monster.

Deng Xiaoping the initiator of China’s State capitalism used to say that for the nation to become rich you must allow somebody to get rich first. But who can be those first to become rich and for how long? Obviously those in power, the CCP people, and once they become rich they are more powerful, and they can stay that way for ever.

Now, for the CCP from being the capitalists exploiting their countrymen to being the imperialists exploiting the other countries there is just one step.

“One Belt, One Road” project (the modern “silk road”). Xi Jinping presents himself to many Asian and African nations as the saviour, the one who can free them from the poverty in which they were left by their colonizers.

“We lend you money, specially to build the infrastructures which are the foundation of progress” (The Communists “lend” money, they never make “gifts”).

“We provide you with expertise and we send the workers to do the job” (Obviously you have to pay for all this. That means the borrowed money goes back to China).

When they are not able to pay back the money, they are requested to pay with monopoly rights and privileges, or even concession of territories and ports (for 99 years).

The new colonizers are worse than the old ones!

A pandemic exploded, a world disaster. It is an awakening for everybody.

It’s time we have a hard look at the journey in history of our humanity. Can we be proud of our scientific progress, of the many possibilities of more consumption? All a sudden we are losing everything and find ourselves powerless.

Now we realize how more important is the truth, our right to information and the freedom of expression.

In close contact with death we are encouraged to pursue the human and gospel values with more determination.

We discover that the real heroes are not those we use to admire on the screen, but those who sacrifice themselves in serving the sick, those who take care to keep clear and healthy our environment.

Finally, we appreciate our faith which teaches us that we are children of God, brothers and sisters in the human family.

Thank you Lord, for this lesson from the pandemic.