China govt church strips Shanghai bishop of title
China's state-run Catholic Church has stripped a bishop of his title after he announced he was quitting the Church's oversight body.
Thaddeus Ma Daqin, an auxiliary bishop in Shanghai, announced his resignation from China's Patriotic Catholic Association (CPCA) after his ordination in July.
Earlier reports emerged that he had been detained in a seminary near Shanghai.
Rome, which approved the appointment of Bishop Ma, does not recognise the CPCA, which in turn rejects the Pope's authority, the BBC reports.
Both claim the exclusive right to appoint bishops.
According to the report, the bishop's declaration that he intended to resign from the CPCA sent shock waves through the official hierarchy, as it was seen as a challenge to Chinese state control over Catholic churches and clergy.
China's estimated 10 million Catholics are split between followers of the Pope and the CPCA.
China broke off diplomatic relations with the Vatican in 1951, but in recent years tensions between Beijing and Rome had eased somewhat, with the occasional visit by a senior Vatican cardinal, the report said.