This April marks the 90th anniversary of the deaths of three Passionist Catholic priests at the hands of bandits in China. The priests had come as missionaries to Hunan province, and their murders shocked American Catholics, U.S. diplomats, and the Holy See. A new exhibit in the Heritage Room, titled “Life, Death, and Memory: Art and Artifacts from the Passionist China Collection,” honors the martyred men as well as the service of the many other Passionist priests and Sisters of Charity who worked in the region from 1921 to 1955, when the last missionary was expelled from Communist China. They served through famine, flood, and war, and witnessed both incredible suffering and hope. Ultimately, they left a legacy that continues to the present day, inspiring a new generation of Chinese Passionist priests.
The exhibit will be on display until April 24 during normal library business hours. There will be a reception and lecture, by Father Rob Carbonneau, C.P., Ph.D, and Passionist Historian, on Monday, April 8, at 6:00 p.m. in the Heritage Room. The lecture will focus on remembering the witness of faith of the martyred priests, and the larger story of the Chinese Catholic witness of faith. The reception is free and open to the public. For further information, contact Special Collections Librarian Michael Knies at 570-941-6341.