Sankt Augustin (Fides Service) – A special issue dedicated to Saint Josef Freinademetz, Divine Word missionary in China bron in Tyrol has been published by the prestigious review of Chinese studies China heute (China Today) run by the Divine Word Mission Society, published by China Zentrum in Sankt Augustin in Germany. Blessed Freinademetz will be canonised in Rome on 5 October with Arnold Janssen founder of the Divine Word missionaries and with another missionary Daniele Comboni.
The review, supported by the Conference of the German Catholic Bishops, is a point of reference in the international panorama for studies in the religious aspects of mainland China, for history and problems of Catholic missions in China in the past and in the present.
China heute announced also an exhibition dedicated to Jose Freinademetz with the title “A man between two worlds: how a Tyrolian became Chinese” which is opened at the Tradition and Culture Museum in Sankt Augustin until 30 November 2003.
Joseph Freinademetz (1852 –1908) was one of the first two Divine Word missionaries to work in China, in particular in the area of Shandong (South east China). Born in Badia in South Tyrol, he was ordained a priest in 1875 and a year alter entered the Mission Society of the Divine Word. IN 1881 he was sent to the mission entrusted to the Divine Word Missionaries in the province of Shangdong. He is recognised at “father and founder of the Church in the south o the province of Shangdong” The local people called him with his Chinese name P. Fu Ruo She and compared him with Confucius, the greatest Chinese scholar, because, the faithful said, the missionary possessed all the moral virtues. PA (Fides Service 3/10/2003 EM lines 38 Words: 478)