Christian culture 基督教文化学刊

Xu Zongze's Catholic Theological Ideas about National Salvation and the Exploration of Inculturation

LI Lili, The Chinese University of Hong Kong



“National Salvation” was a major concern of modern Chinese society. Roman Catholicism was called “the pioneer of imperialism” and criticized by Chinese patriots because of the close ties between Catholicism and imperialism. Xu Zongze’s effort to promote patriotism has not been given enough attention by scholars until now. As a Chinese Catholic theologian, he tried to arouse the patriotic consciousness of Chinese Catholics and urge them, from a theological perspective, to join the anti-Japanese resistance in 1937. This paper will focus on the theme of “National Salvation” and try to explain Xu’s theology of patriotism within the Roman Catholic tradition. The purpose of this paper is to evaluate the historical significance of Xu’s ideas in the context of the Catholic Church’s official stance and its tradition of social education. The author argues that Xu Zongze’s theology offers an example of successful and progressive inculturation of Roman Catholic faith on Chinese soil.



Xu Zongze, Catholicism, National Salvation, Inculturation


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