Measures on the Management of Religious Professionals (Draft for Solicitation of Comments)

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Chapter I: General Provisions

Article 1: These measures are formulated on the basis of the "Regulations on Religious Affairs", so as to regulate the management of religious professionals and safeguard religious professionals' lawful rights and interests.

Article 2: Religious professionals as used in these Measures refers to personnel who have acquired religious professional credentials and who may engage in religious affairs activities.

Article 3: Religious professionals shall love the motherland, support the leadership of the Communist Party of China, support the socialist system, abide by the Constitution, laws, regulations, and rules; practice the Core Socialist Values, uphold the principle of religious independence and self-management, persist in our nation's direction of the sinification of religion, and preserve national unity, ethnic unity, religious harmony, and social stability.

Article 4: Religious affairs departments for people's governments at the county level or above are to conduct administrative management over religious professionals in accordance with law, protecting the lawful rights and interests of religious professionals; supporting religious groups, religious schools, and religious activity sites in cultivating and managing religious professionals, and guiding religious professionals to play an active role in the promotion of economic and social development.

Chapter II: Rights and Obligations of Religious Professionals

Article 5: Religious professionals enjoy the following rights in accordance with law:

(1) to preside over religious activities and hold religious ceremonies;

(2) to engage in the curation of religious texts, research on religious doctrine, canon, and culture;

(3) to engage in and receive religious education and training;

(4) to participate in the democratic management of the religious groups, religious schools, and religious activity sites to which they belong, and serve in corresponding posts in accordance with procedures;

(5) to carry out public interest charitable activities;

(6) to participate in social security and enjoy the corresponding rights;

(6) to participate in social security and enjoy the corresponding rights;

Article 6: Religious professionals shall perform the following obligations:

(1) Preserve the national interest and societal public interest, and carry out activities within the scope provided by laws, regulations, and rules;

(2) accept the lawful management of religious affairs departments and other relevant departments;

(3) comply with the system of rules formulated by religious groups, and accept management by the religious group, religious school, and religious activity sites to which they belong;

(4) Serve religious citizens and guide them to love the nation and obey the law;

(5) Maintain the normal order of religious activities, resist illegal religious activities and extremist religious ideology, and defend against the infiltration of foreign forces using religion;

(6) Promote and maintain harmony between different religions, groups within the same religion, and between religious and non-religious citizens;

(7) other obligations provided by laws, regulations, or rules.

Article 7: Religious professionals shall pay attention to raising their own caliber, raising the level of religious affairs and capacity for organizational management, research content in religious doctrines and canon that are conducive to social harmony and modern progress, and healthy civilization and integrate this into sermons and preaching to play a role in advancing the sinification of religion in our country.

Article 8: Religious professionals publishing internet religious information shall follow the relevant provisions of the National Internet Information Services.

Article 9: Religious professionals' acquisition of income shall comply with the provisions of laws, regulations, rules, and policies, as well as the religious groups' rule systems. Religious professionals shall separate personal property from the property of religious groups, religious schools, and religious activity sites, and must not take illegal possession of, misappropriate, secretly distribute, destroy, or dispose of the assets of religious groups, religious schools, or religious activity sites without authorization.

Religious professionals shall pay taxes in accordance with law and lawfully make tax declarations.

Article 10: Religious professionals serving as the principle responsible person of, or those engaging in financial affairs work for, religious groups, religious schools, or religious activity sites, shall follow the relevant state laws and regulations on finances, accounting, and property management, and strengthen the financial management of the religious groups, religious schools, or religious activity sites.

Article 11: Religious professionals going abroad (outside the mainland) to study religion shall be selected by national religious groups or by the religious groups of provinces, autonomous regions, and directly-governed municipalities.

Religious professionals going abroad (outside the mainland) to carry out religious exchanges shall follow the relevant state provisions and complete the corresponding formalities.

Article 12: Religious professionals must not have the following conduct:

(1) Endangering national security or public safety; promoting, supporting, or funding religious extremism; undermining ethnic unity or splitting the nation; conducting terrorist activities or participating in related activities;

(2) Interfering with the implementation of administrative, judicial, educational, or other state functions;

(3) accepting domination by external forces, accepting clergy from foreign religious groups or organizations without authorization, as well as otherwise conduct contrary to the principle of religious independence and self-governance;

(4) Violating national regulations in accepting domestic or foreign donations;

(5) organizing, presiding over, or participating in unapproved religious activities held outside of religious activity sites;

(6) Using public interest charitable activities to proselytize, proselytizing in schools or other educational bodies that are not religious schools, as well as other illegal proselytization;

(7) Conducting commercial publicity in the name of religion;

(8) other conduct in violation of laws, regulations, or rules.

Chapter III: Religious Professional Credentials

Article 13: The acquisition of religious professional credentials shall be upon designation by a religious group and reporting to the religious affairs department of a people's government at the county level or above to be filed for the record, religious professionals.

National religious groups shall draft measures for the designation of religious professionals in that faith, and provide the title for religious professionals, and the requirements and procedures for their designation. National religious groups' measures for designating religious professionals formulated shall be reported to the State Bureau of Religious Affairs for recording.

Religious groups shall designate religious professionals pursuant to the measures for designating religious professionals formulated by national religious groups.

Article 14: Religious groups shall complete a religious professionals filing form within 20 days from the designation of a religious professional, send it to be recorded with the religious affairs department for the people's government at the county level or above, and submit copies of the proposed religious professionals' household registration booklet and resident identity card.

Religious professionals designated by national religious groups are to be reported for filing with the State Bureau of Religious Affairs; religious professionals designated by religious groups of provinces, autonomous regions, or directly governed municipalities are to be reported for filing with the religious affairs departments of provincial-level governments; religious professionals designated by municipal (prefecture, prefecture [zhou], league) religious groups are to be reported for filing with the religious affairs department of districted cities; and religious professionals designated by county (city, district, banner) religious groups are to be reported for filing with the religious affairs department of people's governments at the county level.

The State Bureau of Religious Affairs is to formulate model forms for filing of religious professionals.

Article 15: Inheritance and succession of living Buddhas in Tibetan Buddhism are to be handled in accordance with the "Regulations on Religious Affairs", "Measures for the Administration of Reincarnation of Living Buddhas in Tibetan Buddhism", and other relevant provisions.

Article 16: Catholic bishops are to be approved and consecrated by the Bishops Conference of Catholic Church in China. The Chinese Patriotic Catholic Association and Bishops Conference of Catholic Church in China shall complete a form for recording Catholic bishops within 20 days of consecrating them, send it to the State Bureau of Religious Affairs for filing, and submit the following materials:

(1) Copies of the bishop's household registration booklet and resident identity card.

(2) An explanation of the circumstances by which the provincial, autonomous region, or directly governed municipality religious group democratically selected that bishop;

(3) The approval documents from the Bishops Conference of Catholic Church in China;

(4) An explanation of their consecration by the bishop that presided over it.

The State Bureau of Religious Affairs is to formulate model forms for filing of catholic bishops.

Article 17: Religious affairs departments shall make a written response within 20 work days of receiving filing materials from religious groups, and where they do not respond in the time allowed, it will be viewed as the filing procedures having been completed.

Article 18: In any of the following circumstances, proposed religious professionals are not to be recorded:

(1) They were not designated by religious groups pursuant to the measures for designating religious professionals formulated by national religious groups;

(2) The materials submitted were not true.

Article 19: After religious affairs departments handle filing, they shall allot a filing number for the religious professional. Filing numbers are to use a 12 digit code, comprised of 6 digits being the code for the administrative region, 1 digit being the religion code, and five digits being the serial number.

Article 20: Religious groups shall issue religious professional certificates to religious professionals that have completed filing, and must not collect fees.

Religious professional certificates are applied throughout the entire nation. Religious groups and religious affairs departments must not repeatedly designate or file religious professionals.

Religious professional certificates are to be printed by national religious groups, and the certificates shall indicate content such as the filing number and validity period. Religious professionals shall promptly handle the formalities for an extension before the completion of the certificate's validity period.

Article 21: In any of the following circumstances, religious organizations shall complete deregistration procedures with the corresponding religious affairs department in accordance with their management duties, and make an announcement in an appropriate fashion:

(1) religious affairs department have lawfully recommended that religious groups cancel religious professional credentials;

(2) religious groups cancel religious professional credentials in accordance with that religion's relevant provisions;

(3) religious professionals' credentials are lost by voluntary forfeiture, death, or other reasons.

Chapter IV: Primary Clergy of Religious Activity Sites

Article 22: The primary clergy of religious activity sites refers to the religious professionals who preside over religious rituals at the religious activity site.

National religious groups shall draft measures for the primary clergy of religious activity sites holding positions, providing for the specific scope, requirements, and procedures for primary clergy at religious activity sites taking their positions. National religious groups' measures for designating primary clergy of religious activity sites taking their posts shall be reported to the State Bureau of Religious Affairs for recording.

Article 23: within 10 days of religious professionals proposed as primary clergy for religious activity sites completing the measures for assuming the position as formulated by national religious groups, the site is to report for filing to the religious affairs department of the people's government at the county level or above, complete the form for recording the primary clergy of religious activity sites, and submit the following materials:

(1) An explanation of the circumstances of the appointment;

(2) Copies of the proposed personnel's household registration booklet, resident identity card, and religious professional certificate;

Where the proposed personnel are leaving other positions as primary clergy at a religious activity site, materials on deregistration as the primary clergy of the other religious activity site shall also be submitted.

The State Bureau of Religious Affairs is to formulate model forms for filing of primary clergy for religious activity sites.

Article 24: Religious affairs departments for people's governments at the county level or above shall make a written response within 20 workdays of receiving filing materials from religious activity sites, and where they do not respond in the time allowed, it will be viewed as the filing procedures having been completed.

Article 25: In any of the following circumstances, proposed primary clergy for religious activity sites are not to be recorded:

(1) Those proposed for positions as primary clergy of religious activity sites were not selected in accordance with measures drafted by the national religious group;

(2) Where the proposed personnel are leaving other positions as primary clergy at a religious activity site do not handle deregistration formalities.

(3) The materials submitted were not true.

Article 26: After filing procedures are completed for primary clergy of religious activity sites, that site is to hold appointment ceremonies for the religious professionals serving as primary clergy, to formally impart their duties.

Article 27: The primary clergy of religious activity sites follow a term system, with terms of 3-5 years. Those continuing to serve as primary clergy when the term is complete shall be handled in accordance with the provisions of article 23 of these Measures.

Article 28: Where religious professionals leave positions as primary clergy at a religious activity site, the religious activity site shall handlie deregistration formalities in accordance with filing procedures and submit the following materials:

(1) An explanation of the decision by the organization managing the site to have the religious professional leave as the religious activity site's primary clergy;

(2) Written comments submitted by the site's local religious group.

Where the religious professional serving as a religious activity site's primary clergy concurrently serves as the principle responsible person for the organization managing the site, or as the responsible person for body managing its finances, the religious activity sites shall also submit a report on the review of their leaving the financial position.

Article 29: In any of the following circumstances, the departure of primary clergy for religious activity sites is not to be recorded:

(1) The organization managing the site did not follow the procedures provided in the measures drafted by the national religious group on taking positions as primary clergy as religious activity sites in making a decision on religious professionals leaving a position as primary clergy at a religious activity site;

(2) The local religious group for the site did not consent;

(3) Those serving as the principle responsible person for the organization managing the site, or as the responsible person for body managing its finances, did not do a review of their leaving the financial position.

Article 30: Religious professionals can normally only serve as the primary clergy for one religious activity site. Where it is truly necessary, they may serve part-time as the primary clergy for a religious activity site.

Service as part-time primary clergy for religious activity sites shall be upon the consent of the religious group for the county (city, region, banner) of the religious activity site, the part-time position is to be reported to the religious affairs department for the county level people's government, and the county-level religious affairs department is to report it up to the religious affairs department of the provincial-level people's governments for filing. Where part-time positions are across provincial, autonomous region, or directly governed municipality lines, the religious affairs department of the provincial-level people's government where the religious activity site for the part-time work is located shall also solicit the opinions of the religious affairs department of the people's government for the area where the religious professional currently serves.

Article 31: in any of the following circumstances, religious professionals serving as the primary clergy for religious activity sites shall handle deregistration formalities in accordance with the procedures for filing positions, and announce this in an appropriate fashion:

(1) They have lost religious professionals credentials;

(2) They have been withdrawn as the primary clergy of the religious activity site for violations of laws, regulations, rules, or the religious groups' system of rules;

(3) They have not performed duties as the primary clergy of the religious activity site for more than one year, or do not have the capacity to normally perform the functions of primary clergy.

Chapter V: Supervision and Management

Article 32: religious affairs departments shall perform the duties of recording religious professionals and primary clergy of religious activity sites, guiding and overseeing religious groups, religious schools, and religious activity sites in the strengthening the management of religious professionals.

Article 33: Religious affairs departments shall fully use government affairs network resources to strengthen the digitalized management of religious professionals.

the State Bureau of Religious Affairs is to establish an information library on religious professionals, and the religious affairs departments of local people's governments shall promptly provide and update information on religious professionals such as their basic information, rewards and punishments, and deregistration.

Article 34: Where religious professionals engage in religous affairs activities across provincial, autonomous region, or directly governed municipality lines, they shall do so upon the consent of the religious group for the province, autonomous region, or directly governed municipality that they are leaving and where they are heading, and report for filing to the religious affairs department of the provincial-level people's governments at both locations. Of these, Of these, where they cross provincial, autonomous region, or directly governed municipality lines to engage in religious affairs activities for one year or more, the religious affairs departments for the provincial-level people's governments for the two locations are to modify relevant information through the religious professionals information library. The duties of managing those religious professionals are to be transferred to the corresponding religious affairs department and religious groups for the area they move to.

Based on actual conditions, the provinces, autonomous regions, or directly governed municipalities are to draft provisions on the management of religious professionals crossing administrative regions at the county or districted city level to engage in religious affairs activities.

Article 35: Religious groups shall draft training plans for religious professionals to strengthen political education, legal education, cultural education, and religious education for religious professionals, and increase to overall caliber of religious professionals and the caliber of religious professionals as a whole.

Article 36: National religious groups and religious groups issuing religious professional credentials shall standardize religious professional certificates, and must not issue certificates in violation of rules or to obtain profit.

Article 37: Religious groups shall establish and complete systems for the management of religious professionals, complete mechanisms for rewards and punishments of religious professionals and for their entry and exit; and punish religious professionals that violate laws, regulations, and rules, as well as that group's rules.

Article 38: Religious groups shall formulate systems for evaluating religious professionals, carry out evaluations of religious professionals, and make the evaluation outcome an important basis for their taking positions, awards, punishments, and so forth.

Article 39: religious groups shall establish archives for religious professionals, complete mechanisms for sharing information on religious groups', religious schools', and religious activity sites' religious professionals, and periodically report to the religious affairs departments on modifications of religious professionals' information.

Religious schools shall promptly report circumstances related to the school's religious professionals to the religous group that established that school.

Religious activity sites shall promptly report circumstances involving the site's religious professionals to the religious group to which they belong and the religious affairs department.

Article 40: Religious schools shall persist in the correct direction for teaching, increasing the quality of teaching, and cultivate high-caliber religious professionals.

Article 41: Religious schools and religious activity sites shall establish and complete management systems for the religious professionals at the school or site, to strengthen routine oversight and management of religious professionals.

religious activity sites shall strictly control the acceptance of religious professionals, and verify and register their identities, and must not accept religious professionals beyond the site's ability to accommodate them, or exceeding their economic capacity.

Article 42: Religious professionals serving as the primary clergy for religious activity sites shall perform religious affairs management duties, accept the guidance of religious groups on religious affairs, be under the management of the management organization for the religious activity site, and accept oversight by religious professionals and religious citizens in the religious activity site.

Article 43: Where religious affairs departments or religious groups, religious schools, and religious activity sites receive materials reflecting that religious professionals have violated laws, regulations, rules, or the religious groups rule system, they shall investigate and verify it, and handle it in accordance with laws and regulations.

Article 44: Where religious professionals feel that religious groups, religious schools, or religious activity sites have infringed on their lawful rights and interests, they may reflect this to the religious affairs departments, and the religious affairs department shall investigate and verify, and handle it in accordance with law.

Chapter VI: Legal Responsibility

Article 45: Where state personnel abuse their authority in the management of religious professionals, play favorites, neglect their duties or twist the law for personal gain, they shall be punished in accordance with law; where a crime is constituted, criminal responsibility is pursued in accordance with law.

Article 46: Where religious groups, religious schools, or religious affairs departments exhibit any of the following conduct, the religious affairs departments are to order corrections, and where corrections are refused, it is to be handled in accordance with article 65 of the "Religious Affairs Regulations":

(1) Failed to establish and complete systems for the management of religious professionals;

(2) Failed to manage religious professionals in accordance with these Measures;

(3) Failed to follow provisions on designation or approval of religious professionals;

(4) religious activity sites failed to follow provisions in the selection of primary clergy to serve at the religious activity site;

(5) religious groups or religious activity sites failed to follow these Measures to handle filing formalities for religious professionals or the primary clergy for religious activity sites;

(6) Failed to issue religious professional certificates as provided, or sought profit through issuing certificates;

(7) Infringed on the lawful rights and interests of religious professionals;

(8) Have other conduct in violation of the provisions of these Measures.

Article 47: Where religious professionals violate article 3 or the relevant provisions of Chapter II of this Law, it is to be handled in accordance with the provisions of article 73 of the "Religious Affairs Regulations".

Article 48: Where anyone is dissatisfied with administrative acts taken by the religious affairs departments, they may lawfully apply for an administrative reconsideration; where dissatisfied with the decision of the administrative reconsideration, they may lawfully raise an administrative lawsuit.

Chapter VII: Supplementary Provisions

Article 49: Where counties (cities, districts, banners) have no relevant religious groups, the corresponding duties provided for by these Measures are to be performed by municipal (prefecture region, prefecture, or league) religious groups.

Where cities (regions, prefectures, leagues) and directly governed municipality districts (counties) have no relevant religious groups, the corresponding duties are to be performed by provincial, autonomous region, or directly governed municipality religious groups.

Where provinces, autonomous regions, or directly governed municipalities do not have relevant religious groups, the relevant duties are to be performed by national religious groups.

Article 50: The State Administration for Religious Affairs is responsible for the interpretation of these Measures.

Article 51: These Measures take effect on XX/XX/XX. The "Measures for Recording of Religious Professionals" and the "Measures for Recording of Primary Clergy at Religious Activity Sites" released by the State Bureau of Religious Affairs in 2006, are simultaneously abolished.

 

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