[Death of a Pro-Beijing HK Bishop (Chapman Chen reports) — Local Press]
Summary : Hong Kong Catholic Bishop Michael Yeung Ming-cheung (1945-2019) died of liver failure today (3 Jan.) afternoon at the age of 73. He is regarded by many Hongkongers as a pro-Communist China priest because of his controversial symbolism and sayings. E.g., his coat of arms is full of references to Red China; he compared activists joining the Occupy Central Movement and homosexuals to drug addicts; he supported the dismantling of crosses in China and the enactment of the National Anthem Law in HK; he advised people against challenging China about the Tiananmen Square Massacre; and he had close ties with HK Chief Executive Carrie Lam.
Yeung’s “Red” Coat of Arms
His coat of arms incorporates the Great Wall, which is a symbol of the dictatorial empire of China, and a view of the Lion Rock of HK highlighting the Bank of China Tower, a symbol of Communist China’s colonial presence in Hong Kong. So much the more, the Bible above Lion Rock is so conspicuously red that it reminds one of Chairman Mao’s Little Red Book.
HK Activists are Drug-addicts?
When Yeung was named by Pope Francis one of three Auxiliary Bishops of HK in July 2014, he was asked what the church would do if there were Catholics arrested for occupying Central, he said if his son was arrested for taking dangerous drugs, he would also try to render help. In 2015, when asked about whether candidates’ stance towards sexual orientation discrimination ordinance should be considered when Catholics voted in the district council election, Yeung answered that although the Church condemned drug-taking, they would still help drug addicts.
“Don’t you really want to bump your head against a hard wall?”
Soon after Yeung became head of the Catholic Church in Hong Kong in August 2017, in reply to a reporter’s question about his take on the Tiananmen Square Massacre, he said that it was a very sad thing, asking , “Don’t you really want to hit your head against a hard wall?” When asked about the dismantling of crosses on the Chinese Mainland, he remarked that if there were unauthorized building works, why not?
“National Anthem as a Social Norm”
When asked about his view of HK Chief Executive Carrie Lam, he stated, “She has never wronged me. Has she used us? People, of course, use each other.” In November 2017, when asked about the enactment of the National Anthem Law in Hong Kong, Yeung remarked that he did not believe any Hongkonger would deny being a China-person, that if anyone should adamantly refuse to sing the national anthem, “it would be against a social norm.”
Background of Michael Yeung
Yeung Ming-cheung was born in Shanghai in 1945. He came to HK at the age of four. He was ordained a priest for the diocese of Hong Kong on 10 June 1978. From 1980 to 1982 he earned an MA in social communications from Syracuse University in the United States. In 1982 he returned to Hong Kong and was appointed director of the office of Social Communications for the diocese. Subsequently he was appointed as parish priest of Our Lady of Lourdes parish, where he served until 1989 when he was appointed chaplain at Yu C.K. Memorial College. He returned to the United States to study at Harvard University where in 1990 he earned a Master’s in Education (Ed.M.). He then returned to Hong Kong.