The outstanding human and Christian qualities of Matteo Ricci are nowadays widely recognized both in the West and in China. His work, however, has been the object of serious and painful misunderstandings from the beginning: by his Chinese contemporaries, by the Church itself and by all those who simply see him as a «man of dialogue» and a «cultural apostle». Whereas the first two misunderstandings have been cleared, the third is still alive and prevents understanding the real intention of this Jesuit priest from Macerata, that was clearly indicated in the Catechism he wrote: to approach the Chinese people to the Christian Revelation, that being an expression of the divine Logos speaks through the human logos – the universal reason that joins all men together, regardless (and in the depths) of their different cultures.

(Author: Antonio Olmi)

Summary ed.29 (I/2011)