Rome Archives Research on Teilhard

Frank and Mary are back from two weeks in Rome and have recovered from the viruses we picked up on our way back, and want to bring you up to date with The Teilhard de Chardin Project.

The purpose of our trip was to attend the SIGNIS World Congress (the international Catholic Media organization) where Frank was elected ( International Vice-President.   And to research Teilhard at the Jesuit Curia Archives and the Vatican Secret Archives.

Highlights of our trip turned out to include lunch with the Jesuit Father General Adolfo Nicolas, and a meeting with Vatican spokesman Fr. Federico Lombardi, SJ.

IMG_3897-csWith Fr. Adolfo Nicolas, SJ are (L-R) Marie Bayon de la Tour, Frank Frost, Mary Frost, and Tracy Higgins.

Of course the era of Pope Francis is a great time to be in Rome, even when the weather is rainy and cold, and we managed to attend a weekly audience in St. Peter’s Square.  The immense enthusiasm with which this pope is greeted is energizing.

The first week at the SIGNIS World Congress of SIGNIS also had something to offer the Teilhard de Chardin Project.  It was Frank’s responsibility to introduce the keynote speaker, Antonio Spadaro, SJ.  Some will recognize his name as the Director of Civilta Cattolica who did the interviews with Pope Francis that were published in America Magazine and other Jesuit publications worldwide last fall.  Turns out he is a published Teilhard expert!  We had a good conversation and hope to involve him in the project down the pike.

The second week was spent in the archives of the Jesuit Curia, researching the critical years when Teilhard first got in trouble with Church authorities.  Frank and Mary Frost were joined by Marie Bayon de la Tour, a great-niece of Teilhard from France, and Tracy Higgins, a Teilhard scholar from New York.   We made a great team, covering among us all the languages required for the task:  French, Italian, and Latin.  We were also assisted for a time by our China-based co-producer, Jerry Martinson, SJ.

Jerry introduced us to Fr. Lombardi, who came to visit us at the Archives, bringing us some materials from the late Cardinal Martini, showing that Martini had a devotion to Teilhard.  Fr. Lombardi told us that since his own life is totally immersed in communication he relates deeply to Teilhard’s vision, which he sees as being all about communication. The noosphere, as he sees it, is now manifest in instant and global digital communication.

More on what we found in the archives soon.

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