Cultural Exchange with China (CEC)

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The Columban Missionary Society was originally founded in 1916 for the purpose of bringing the Good News of Jesus Christ to the people of China.

Many Columbans endured great hardships and spent their lives working in China, but, after the Communist revolution, the last Columbans remaining in China at that time were expelled in the early 1950s. During the period of 1950s to 1970s many Chinese people also suffered greatly under the then regime.

Over the past 25 years there has been a resurrection in the public forum of the Christian Churches in China and they have much to share with the world about their fidelity to the Gospel during difficult times. Cultural Exchange with China (CEC) was set up in Britain ten years ago by the Columban Missionary Society, other missionary groups and teachers with a special interest in China. It aims is to promote understanding, co-operation and mutually beneficial friendships between the Catholic Churches of China and of Britain.

CEC promotes awareness in the Catholic Church in Britain about China, its culture, history and present situation. It helps people in Britain to experience the current cultural and religious reality in China through exposure visits and other methods. CEC facilitates teachers of English from Britain to work in China and enables students from the Catholic community in China to study in Britain. It also links with Chinese communities in the UK. In addition, CEC networks internationally and hosts Chinese visitors for academic dialogue on issues of global concern, including religious issues and ecology.

The Director of CEC is Columban Father Eamonn O’Brien and the Office Coordinator is Antony Roullier.

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Fr. Eamonn’s blog

Contact: Cultural Exchange with China:

St. Joseph’s,
Watford Way,
NW4 4TY.

020 8202 2555 –

Our Ecumenical China Desk (ECD), engages in the following: linking with the Missionary Union of England and Wales and keeping it updated on China issues; representing the Missionary Union in the China Forum, the ecumenical China body in the UK; linking with European ecumenical China forums; researching China issues.


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