There is a great, wise maxim that we ought to remember in cases like this:
Do not assume malice when ignorance is just as likely.
Believe it or not, I think that Pope Francis made this decision out of naïveté. Mind you, I say that with all due respect. Now, I know that that sounds absurd, as he is our Holy Father, but to put it simply: I believe that he assumed good faith when the subject in question has proven every step of the way to be acting in bad faith. That was a mistake, and the people who live within the People’s Republic of China will have to pay the price for it.
That is very unwise, and I hope that some day, Pope Francis looks back upon that decision and admits that hindsight has shown that it was a mistake to have made that decision. Our Holy Father is a great man, and two things that he certainly is not lacking in are humility and charity.
I just hope that the havoc wroke by the PRoC on faithful Catholics isn’t catastrophic with regard to Catholicism in China by the time that this is finally admitted to have been a mistake. Remember what a previous Chinese government once did to “fix” the opium-addiction epidemic. And, with regard to the present Communistic government, remember Tiananmen Square as well.
Xi Jinping is, to all intents and purposes, a Mao Tse-tung wannabe. They aren’t exactly the same, obviously, but Xi Jinping could probably be fairly said to be essentially a contemporary “practical Communist’s Mao Tse-tung”. He is a dreadful man, and represents all that is wrong with the PRoC, in a nutshell.
Oh ye of no faith, have you forgotten the events leading up to the fall of the Soviet Union? Or has that fact that I always note by saying “If one truly desires with all of one’s heart to not believe something, one will find a means of not believing it” reared its ugly head once again?