The Jesuits In Latin America

697 Words 3 Pages
During the 16-18 Centuries, the Jesuits had a major role in Paraguay, Portugal and Brazil. They broke up into smaller missions throughout South America. Likewise, the Jesuits had a major presence in East and South Asia. Arguably, their most important works were the China missions, which played a vital role in introducing geography, western science, knowledge and culture, and western relations.
Early in the 16th Century, St. Francis Xavier, who was a co-founding member of the order never made it to the Chinese mainland. He would not be able to fill his desire to convert China into Christianity. Xavier died waiting for permission to land. Prior to the reductions, there was only limited missionary work to Macau, which was an autonomous
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He convinced the other Jesuits they would never be able go very far without learning the language and culture of China. So, he established St. Paul Jesuit College in Macau and recruited Michele Ruggieri to start the study of Chinese. Ruggieri and Ricci became prominent in the reduction and were committed to adapting religious qualities of the Chinese people: Ricci was assigned to the educated classes where Confucianism ruled and Ruggieri was assigned to the common people, where Taoism ruled. Ricci spent the rest of his life in China and he wrote to Jesuit Priests in Europe. He called for:"men of talent, since we are dealing here with a people both intelligent and learned." Many other Jesuits followed Ricci’s and many others commitment to China since traveling to Europe took several months to years and that it took more time to learn China’s language and culture. However, some took a pilgrimage to Europe as representatives of the mission; they were there to recruit more Jesuits to China. The missionaries published scholarly journals and popular literature as a means to ensure their mission and for publicity of the Church’s central …show more content…
They were ultimately able to convert scholars and many others to Christianity. They taught them western sciences, and geography. The missionaries studied, collected Chinese maps and then combined them with western maps, hence creating world maps in the 17th Century. Giulio Aleni, for instance, was a Jesuit who created the Complete Map of the Myriad Countries. Aleni was the first missionary to learn and speak Chinese, and he was also the first to publish 16-17th Century maps of the world. Aleni modified Ricci’s maps and placed the “Middle Kingdom” in the center of the maps. This ultimately helped China make contributions to the exchange between China and the west and as well as becoming less isolated with other countries; there is more common understanding in math and to an extent of language. The Jesuits presence caught the attention to scholars and they were astonished how organized they were and how the Jesuits were able to translate and teach Western mathematics and astronomy to their

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