Published Date : 2023-07-17
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Blaise Pascal’s ‘Thoughts on Religion’

By: Georg Sans, SJ

Blaise Pascal, the French philosopher, was born four hundred years ago, on June 19, 1623. He is among those modernist thinkers who are difficult even to categorize. At the age of 16, Blaise published his first work on conic sections. At 19, he built his mechanical calculator, called Pascalina, which anticipated our computers. At 24, he succeeded in experimentally proving the existence of the vacuum, thus challenging thought about the ether. A few years later he became interested in the...

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James Lee Burke: Raconteur of life on the margins

By: Diego Mattei, SJ

Jimenez Edizioni is a recently founded (2018) Italian publisher whose catalog contains U.S., British and Australian authors, with a focus on music and film. Last year it released a collection of short stories by James Lee Burke.[1] Born in 1936, the U.S. writer is best known for his thriller and detective novels, from which two films have been made: Heaven’s Prisoners (1996) and In the Electric Mist (2009). In both films the protagonist is Detective Dave Robicheaux, the main character...

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Martino Martini: The Jesuit who introduced China to Europe

By: Federico Lombardi, SJ

In the first century of the missions of the early Society of Jesus in China, some better-known figures stand out, such as the Italian Matteo Ricci (1552-1610), the German Adam Schall von Bell (1592-1666) and the Flemish Ferdinand Verbiest (1623-88). But the well-deserved fame of these missionaries kept in the shadows for a long time numerous others who also made very important contributions in that fundamental period for the relationship between Christianity and China, between Western and Chinese culture, a...

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Jesus Mocked

By: Enrico Cattaneo, SJ

Treatises on Christology emphasize the titles of glory that characterize the figure of Jesus: Son of God, Christ, Savior of the World. Less visible are the insulting terms his opponents employed to describe him. Indeed, wanting to collect them all, we find that Jesus was accused of being an impostor, an evildoer, a glutton and a drunkard, possessed by demons, a madman, a blasphemer, a troublemaker, son of an unknown father, a Samaritan. This, too, is part of that “emptying”...

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The Astalli Center 2023 Annual Report

By: Camillo Ripamonti, SJ

The Centro Astalli, which is operated by the Jesuit Refugee Service, has just released its 22nd Annual Report.[1] The report uses both data and personal observation to illustrate a stretch of the road taken in 2022 with asylum seekers and refugees in Italy: about 10,000 people were assisted in Rome alone; 18,000 across Italy, at locations in Palermo, Catania, Grumo Nevano, Bologna, Vicenza, Padua and Trento. Thousands of faces – people and their stories – become written word for the...

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The New Context of International Trade

By: Fernando de la Iglesia Viguiristi SJ

The global economy has faced intense and difficult challenges in recent years. A virus froze it, inflicting the worst recession ever suffered in peacetime. The war in Ukraine has opened a new era, and when the first Russian missile took flight, energy and commodity prices began to rocket. Thus galloping inflation was unleashed. Because of the invisible enemy, Covid-19, and the highly visible Russian military, value chains have frayed and challenged productive globalization. At the same time, and as a...

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