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Italian Bishop praises Ricci legacy

Jesuit pioneer helped forge ongoing east-west links, Macerata prelate says

Bishop Claudio Giuliodori of Macerata meets with Archbishop John
Hung Shan-chuan of Taipei Bishop Claudio Giuliodori of Macerata meets with Archbishop John Hung Shan-chuan of Taipei
  • Francis Kuo, Taipei
  • Taiwan
  • February 17, 2012
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Father Matteo Ricci's legacy lives on to this today, according to the bishop whose diocese includes the birthplace of the 16th century Italian Jesuit missioner who was one of the founding figures of the Church in China.

Fr Ricci’s spiritual heritage “of mutual respect and open-minded dialogue between East and West is still relevant today,” Bishop Claudio Giuliodori of Macerata told Archbishop John Hung Shan-chuan yesterday during a meeting with leaders of the Taiwan Church at the Taipei Archdiocese curia.

To this end, his diocese has established the Li Madou Study Center (Li Madou is the Chinese name of Fr Ricci) to serve Chinese clergy who pursue studies in Europe and hold theological seminars, the 53-year-old Italian prelate told them during his visit to the island.

During his week-long visit, which began on February 15, Bishop Guiliodori will also look for testimonies that would help move the sainthood cause of Fr Ricci forward.

He hoped Shanghai diocese in the mainland could speed up its cause for Paul Xu Guangqi (1562-1633), Fr Ricci’s collaborator in China, so that “the two Catholic sages of East and West would be canonized together.”

“Through the example of their canonization, other Chinese dioceses may engage actively in the search of historical material to apply for the canonizations of other foreign missioners, Chinese clergy and laypeople,” he said.

Bishop Giuliodori was due to travel south today to meet Cardinal Paul Shan Kuo-hsi in Kaohsiung diocese.

Tomorrow he will visit Tainan diocese where he will unveil three statues of Fr Ricci, Xu and his granddaughter Xu Candida (1607-1680), who was an active evangelizer.

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