History of Confucian-Christian relations

Book chapter


Chia, Edmund Kee-Fook. (2021). History of Confucian-Christian relations. In In Chia, Edmund Kee-Fook (Ed.). Confucianism and Christianity : Interreligious dialogue on the theology of mission pp. 13-32 Routledge.
AuthorsChia, Edmund Kee-Fook
EditorsChia, Edmund Kee-Fook
Abstract

[Excerpt] While it is true that there have not been too many engagements between the Confucian and Christian traditions in history, it is not altogether accurate to suggest that there has been absolutely no relationship. The history of this relationship is actually quite long, albeit brief and fractured, stretching all the way back to the first millennium.

The present article examines this history, beginning with the discovery of the presence of Nestorian Christians in China in the 8th century, discussing their initial warm reception by the Chinese emperor and the difficulties they encountered with the local communities later. It then makes cursory mention of the visits of Italian merchants such as Marco Polo to the Middle Kingdom during the time of the Song Dynasty (960–1279). Next to be discussed is the most substantive Confucian-Christian encounter, which began with the engagements of Matteo Ricci and his Jesuit companions with the Confucian literati in the 16th century.

The most critical aspect of this encounter is their policy of accommodation and the Rites and Terms Controversy that resulted from it. The article then offers a brief summation of how Christianity was given birth in Korea through the auspices of the Korean Confucian literati and the fate the Korean Christians suffered on account of their rejection of the Confucian rites and ancestor veneration.

The next phase of the Confucian-Christian encounter begins with the influx of Christian missionaries and the debut of Protestantism in China. The challenges confronted by both the Christians and Confucians with the rise of the New Culture Movement leading up to the Communist ban on religions will also be examined. The article concludes with an exposition of the major theological themes highlighted in the contemporary Confucian- Christian encounters that took ascendancy with China’s Reform and Opening- Up policy in the late 20th century.

Page range13-32
Year2021
Book titleConfucianism and Christianity : Interreligious dialogue on the theology of mission
PublisherRoutledge
Place of publicationLondon ; New York, New York
ISBN9780367358853
Web address (URL)https://ebookcentral.proquest.com/lib/acu/detail.action?docID=6352659
Publisher's version
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All rights reserved
File Access Level
Controlled
Output statusPublished
Publication dates
Online2021
Publication process dates
Deposited05 Oct 2021
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