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Francesco Brancati

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Born in Sicily in 1607; he entered the Society of Jesus in 1624 and went to the Chinese Missions in 1637. For nearly thirty years he labored with admirable zeal and success in the province of Kiang-nan, building, it is said, more than ninety churches and forty-five chapels. In 1665, he was exiled from Peking to Canton, where he died in 1671 (according to Sommervogel, at Shanghai). He wrote and published numerous books in Chinese, most of which, being of great merit, were reprinted by the Jesuit missionaries in the nineteenth century. Among these are a treatise on the Eucharist, instructions on the Decalogue and on the Commandments of the Church, a refutation of divinations, and particularly a Catechism, entitled in Chinese, "Conversations of the Angels." The Russian Archemandrite, who was at the head of the Orthodox mission at Peking, published in the second decade of the nineteenth century an extract of this catechism, adapted to the Greek Rite, in which he omitted everything that disagreed with the Russian schismatic teaching. Brancati also composed in Chinese several volumes of sermons and homilies for the Sundays and feats days of the ecclesiastical year. His work on the Chinese rites was published in two volumes at Paris in 1700. It bears the title "De Sinensium Ritibus politicis Acta," etc.

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