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Rome Reports

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Matteo Ricci moves closer toward beatification

The town where he was born, Maceratta, has pushed forward the beatification process on the 400th anniversary of Ricci?s death.

Msgr. Claudio GiuliodoriBishop of the Diocese of Maceratta (Italy)“The anniversary has brought great attention to Matteo Ricci and many have pushed for the cause. ; We just don?t know when it will be finished.”

The postulator is currently examining documents about the life and virtues of Ricci. ; He?s also gathering evidence about a possible miracle.

Anton WitwerMatteo Ricci Postulator“A group of people asked God to cure a woman through Ricci?s intercession, but this is also being studied.”

According to the postulator, Matteo Ricci was accepted by the Imperial Court of China because he did not impose his message and shared in their knowledge. ; He embraced Chinese culture by living and dressing like the Chinese.

But Ricci wasn?t just an admired intellectual. ; He spread the Gospel in a special way: through story telling.

Anton WitwerMatteo Ricci Postulator“There were only 20 Christians when he arrived in Pekin. ; When he died, there were more than 2,000.”

Msgr. Claudio GiuliodoriBishop of the Diocese of Maceratta (Italy)“He lived an extraordinary life, not only for what he achieved in fusing two cultures, but in his witness to the Gospel. ; He dedicated his life with extreme conviction.”

The Italian priest went to Goa, India in 1578 and moved to Zhaoqing to study Chinese. ; He produced the first map of China on which Europe, Africa and America also appeared.

Ricci was expelled 11 years later in 1589 and then went to Shaozhou. ; There he taught mathematics and translated his book “The Treaty of Friendship” into Chinese to share Western knowledge with the Eastern world. ; In 1601 he entered Pekin and was received in the Emperor?s residence in the Forbidden City.

History books consider Ricci a key person in intellectual development and the spread of Christianity. ; If his cause advances, he?ll also be considered a saint within a few years.