Studium Theologicum Salesianum
Salesian Pontifical University : Faculty of Theology - Jerusalem Campus
  Q & A with Abp Hon Tai Fai  

The Archbishop began the Q & A session with a short personal sharing.  The substance of his sharing revolved around the 3 “F's” of his early life - Faith, Formation and Fervour.  Faith: he spoke about the early experience of religion and conversion in his family, and his own call to the Salesian Priesthood. Formation: he said that formation is about having something deeply meaningful in life. Fervour: he spoke of his mother's advice that if something is worth doing it must be done with enthusiasm, especially in the great commitment of the priesthood.

Here is a selection from the several interesting questions put to the archbishop.

Fr. Joseph Cong Doan, rector of the Pontifical Biblical Institute, raised a question about the scriptures of the religions of the East and the importance of the Word of God.  He asked how the Christian Bible find an important place in the formation of clerics in a multi-religious milieu.  The Archbishop replied that the scriptures of the East are treasured by their peoples.  Matteo Ricci even included quotes from Confucius in his own work the True Meaning of the Lord of Heaven. He continued that there is a universal significance to these Eastern texts.  But he also spoke of the importance of knowing and promoting the Word of God in the dialogue with other religions.

Fr. Noel Muscat, Director of Formation for the Franciscans, asked about the Catholic presence in mainland China. His Excellency praised the work of the early Franciscan missionaries who were the first to carry the gospel to China, and also gave some information about the vigorous presence of the Church in China today.

Fr. Gianni Caputa asked a question about the work of the International Theological Commission on the topic of limbo. Archbishop Savio gave a very enlightening reply.Iin substance, he said that the commission had chosen to speak rather of the hope of salvation for infants who die before being baptized, and that this was an important theological step forward.

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