Stamford, Connecticut, U.S.A. - Bishop Jia Zhiguo, the underground Catholic Bishop of Zhengding in Hebei, China, was arrested approximately 15 months ago on March 30, 2009, the day the Vatican's Commission for the Catholic Church in China began its meeting in Rome. He was forcibly taken from his residence and was never seen again. It was Bishop Jia's 13th arrest by the Chinese authority since January 2004.
I am now pleased to report that Bishop Jia Zhiguo was released at 11:20 (Beijian time) in the morning of July 7, 2010. Earlier in the morning of the same day, an underground church lay-leader of Zhengding diocese received a call from a government official, asking him to pick up Bishop Jia at Shijiazhuang in Heibei. Representatives from the Public Security Bureau, the Patriotic Association, and other government officials were present and they immediately released Bishop Jia to the said leader of the Bishop's diocese.
Immediately after his release, in the presence of the abovementioned government official, the Bishop stated that he had not accepted the Patriotic Association and also had not accepted the authority of the Bishops Conference of the official Church. He further stated that he was and would always be firmly adhered to the leadership of the Holy Father.
We were told that Bishop Jia had lost some weight. So far, there has been no police surveillance on the bishop after he was released.