Evangelization in China: Challenges and Prospects

Evangelization in China: Challenges and Prospects

by Kin Sheung Chiaretto Yan


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An analysis of prospects for evangelization in China, including lessons from the past.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781626980808
Publisher: Orbis Books
Publication date: 06/10/2014
Pages: 208
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.60(d)

About the Author

Kin Sheung Chiaretto Yan lives in Shanghai. He holds a doctorate in Missiology from Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome and a Master's degree in Oriental Religions and Cultures from the University of Santo Tomas in Manila. His primary areas of research are interdisciplinary approaches to the religions and cultures of Asia.

Table of Contents

Foreword Joseph Shih, S. J. vii

Preface ix

Introduction xi

Part I The Situation of Evangelization in China

Chapter 1 Chinese Culture and Religions 3

Assimilation of Cultures and Religions 3

Subordination of Religion to Temporal Authority 6

Different Parameters from the West 6

The Influence of Confucianism on Political Thought 7

The Relationship between Scholar-Officials and Sovereigns 8

The Purification of Confucianism 9

Compatibility of Christianity with Chinese Culture 10

The Chinese Concept of Divinity 10

The Contribution of Christianity toward a Harmonious Society 11

Chapter 2 Lessons from the Past 13

The Introduction of Christianity by the Eastern Syriac Church 13

The Establishment of the Catholic Church on Chinese Soil 14

Tire Third Wave of Christianity and Matteo Ricci 15

The Chinese Rites Controversy 18

Christianity during the Period of Imperialism and Colonialism 20

The Late Emergence of an Indigenous Church 20

Lack of Impact on Mainstream Chinese Culture 22

Chapter 3 Trends in Religious Policy in China 23

A Period of Probing (1949-1965) 23

Eradicating Religious Beliefs (1966-1976) 26

Religious Tolerance (1978-1989) 27

Control of Religions with "Unstable Elements" (1989-2000) 28

Adaptation, but Caution about Foreign Influence (2000-2005) 30

Upholding Freedom of Religious Belief (but Regulated by Law) 31

Religion and a Harmonious Society 32

Religious Policies Developed for the Catholic Church 33

Distinction between Political and Religious Spheres 35

Significant Milestones 37

Common Ground or Who Says So? 37

Chapter 4 The Present-Day Situation of the Catholic Church in China 40

Some Statistics 40

Positive Signs for Christianity 43

Negative Signs for Christianity 51

Evangelization Efforts: The Good and the Bad 56

Part II Recent Documents of the Magisterium Related to the Evangelization of China

Chapter 5 John Paul II on China 71

Supernatural Vision in a Historical Perspective 71

Humility and Courage in Facing Controversies in History 71

No Contradiction between Love for Church and Love for Country 72

Models of Sanctity, from Martyrdom to Dying to Oneself 73

Communion with the Successor of Peter Essential 74

Dialogue on Equal Footing and with Mutual Respect 74

Emphasis on Forgiveness, Reconciliation, and Unity of the Church 75

Inculturation of the Gospel 75

A "Bridge Church": Catholics in Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Macau 76

New Encounter between Christianity and Chinese Culture 77

Chapter 6 Redemptoris Missio and China 79

Mission in China Remains First and Foremost Missio ad Gentes 79

Elements of the New Evangelization 83

The Areopagus of the Modern Age 87

Chapter 7 Letter of Benedict XVI to the Catholic Church in China 94

An Attitude of Respectful and Constructive Dialogue 94

Reconciliation and Internal Divisions 95

Church-State Relations 95

Nonnegotiables and Negotiables 96

Chinese Episcopate and Appointment of Bishops 97

Concrete Pastoral Guidelines and Revocation of Faculties 98

Prayer to Our Lady of Sheshan 100

Part III Challenges and Prospects

Chapter 8 Challenges and Prospects ad Extra and ad Intra 103

Ad Extra 103

Ad Intra 111

Chapter 9 Challenges and Prospects in Political and Cultural Spheres 118

Political Challenges and Prospects 118 Cultural Challenges and Prospects 130

Conclusion 138

Points for Reflection 138

Practical Recommendations 144

A Postscript 145

Epilogue 147

Abbreviations 151

Notes 153

Bibliography 167

Index 177

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