The Pope's condolences on the death of Cardinal Paul Shan Kuo-hsi

2012-08-24 L’Osservatore Romano

On Wednesday afternoon, 22 August, the Jesuit Chinese Cardinal Paul Shan Kuo-hsi, Bishop emeritus of Kaohsiung, died in Taiwan. He was born on 3 December 1923 in Puyang, China, in the Diocese of Daming [Taming] and was ordained a priest on 18 March 1955. He was ordained Bishop of Hwalien on 14 February 1980, subsequent to his appointment on 15 November 1979. Then on 4 March 1991 he was appointed Bishop of Kaohsiung. At the Consistory on 21 February 1998, John Paul II created him a cardinal with the Title of San Crisogono. On 5 January 2006 he resigned from the pastoral governance of the diocese. His funeral will be celebrated on 1 September at St Dominic’s High School, in Kaohsiung.

Cardinal  Shan Kuo-hsi's last act was celebrating mass, only a few hours before his death, on the liturgical feast of the Queenship of the Blessed Virgin Mary in the hospital where he was a patient for a serious condition. A short time later he died to the singing of Salve Regina chanted by the Apostolic Nuncio, Archbishop of Taipei and various other collaborators.

The deceased Cardinal lived his mission in Taiwan understanding how to guide the “small reality” which was a “gateway to the large continent of Asia”: a “bridge” for evangelization, unity and reconciliation. He knew how to respond to the great social changes of Taiwan with pastoral care attentive  to the needs of the person. He worked in this perspective so that the Catholic laity assumed a role ever more conscious and effective. In 2006 he was diagnosed with a tumor.

Benedict XVI expressed his deep sadness at the death of the Cardinal in a Telegram sent to Archbishop Peter Liu Cheng-chung, Bishop of Kaohsiung. Recalling with gratitude his devote service in Kaohsiung and his ministry  as Bishop of Hwalien and as President of the Chinese Regional Bishops' Conference, the Pope joined in prayer with the entire Church in Taiwan, entrusting the priestly soul of the Cardinal “to the infinite mercy of God our loving Father”.