Dialogo è accettare l'altro come è e come egli stesso si definisce e si presenta a noi, di non cessare di essere se stessi mentre ci si confronta con il diverso, di essere consapevoli che la nostra identità esce arricchita e non sminuita da chi di questa identità non accetta alcuni elementi, magari anche quelli che noi riteniamo fondamentali. La riconciliazione è possibile, tra i cristiani e nella compagnia degli uomini. (Enzo Bianchi, priore della Comunità di Bose)

Portrait of a Jesuit - Matteo Ricci

di Gianni Criveller e César Guillén-Nuñez

The superior man on grounds of culture meets with his friends, and by their friendship helps his virtue

Recently, the Macau Ricci Institute has published a short biography of Fr. Matteo Ricci, S.J., based on a collection of essays presented at the Institute respectively by Dr. Gianni Criveller and Dr. César Guillén Nuñez, dedicated to the memory of a great pioneer after whom our Institute is named. This modest publication which would like somehow to contribute to the worldwide commemoration of Matteo Ricci's demise in Beijing in 1610, intends to inaugurate a series of MRI studies related to the Jesuit history in the old China mission. It will be published under the name of Jesuítas Publication Series and will introduce to the readers such outstanding figures of the past as Alessandro Valignano, Melchior Carneiro and Tomás Pereira. Each title of the series will be available in English and Chinese versions (simplified characters).
Together with the commemoration of Ricci, a model of accommodation and intercultural exchange and dialogue, the MRI also marks its own tenth anniversary.

The present publication is addressed widely to MRI friends, benefactors, contributing scholars, and cooperating institutions, as well as to fellow Jesuits and communities. It gathers four essays: two of them are concerned with the life of Matteo Ricci and are written, and earlier presented at MRI Forums, by Dr. Gianni Criveller, PIME; the other two are about the iconography related to a well-known portrait of Matteo Ricci and about the Beijing church that he founded, and are written by Dr. César Guillén Nuñez, MRI researcher.

We sincerely hope that the present MRI publication will bring Matteo Ricci's life and achievements closer to Chinese and Western readers and that it will refresh and enhance in them his spirit of knowledge, virtue and sharing of spiritual and intellectual traditions in dialogue within our globalising world.

Foreword by Artur K. Wardega, S.J.,
MRI Director



Society of Jesus, Chinese Province

23 agosto 2010