The Matteo Ricci Award for Service of God and China
Matteo Ricci (1552 – 1610) was a priest, a member of the Society of Jesus (the Jesuits) and a missionary to China. A missionary is someone who is sent – an emissary – and when Ricci left for the East in 1578, he did so to spend the remainder of his life there. After studying the Confucian Classics and mastering the Chinese language, Ricci went on to write a volume On Friendship in Chinese. It circulated widely in China in his day precisely because it celebrated a virtue highly esteemed in Chinese culture.
The US-China Catholic Association gives the Matteo Ricci Award for Service of God and China to persons who exemplify Matteo Ricci’s devotion to friendship across cultures, living faith, and service to the people of China.
This year the USCCA is proud to honor Brent Fulton and Joann Pittman of ChinaSource as co-recipients of the China Association’s Matteo Ricci Award for Service of God and China.
Brent Fulton served a vital role in founding ChinaSource as the merger, in 2000, between the ChinaSource Journal (later renamed ChinaSource Quarterly) and the Institute of Chinese Studies of the US Center for World Mission. ChinaSource Quarterly, a platform for ministry leaders to share experience and expertise, grew out of the recognition of the growing importance of China. ChinaSource as an organization has continued to grow and evolve with the times, developing a robust online presence along with a variety of vehicles for serving those who seek to collaborate in service to China and the ministry of the Church.
Prior to his work with ChinaSource, Dr. Fulton earned his Ph.D. in political science from the University of Southern California, and from 1995 to 2000 he was managing director of the Institute for Chinese Studies at Wheaton College. From 2000 to 2018 he served as president of ChinaSource and editor-in-chief of ChinaSource Quarterly, which latter role he continues in.
Dr. Fulton is co-author with Luis Bush of China's Next Generation: New China, New Church, New World (ChinaSource, 2014) and author of China's Urban Christians: A Light That Cannot Be Hidden (Wipf and Stock, 2015).
Joann Pittman is senior vice president of ChinaSource and editor of ChinaSource’s ZGBriefs, a weekly post of curated news articles and analysis collected and distilled from more than fifty different Chinese news sources.
Prior to joining ChinaSource in 2012, Ms. Pittman spent 28 years in China teaching, studying, and working as a cross-cultural trainer for organizations engaged with China. A fluent Mandarin speaker, she is author of Survival Chinese Lessons (Dawson Media, 2010). Through her writing, her blogs, and her teaching at the University of Northwestern-St. Paul (MN), Wheaton College (IL), and Taylor University (IN), she has mentored the next generation in its quest to understand the Chinese language and the culture it intends to communicate.
Ms. Pittman is also author of The Bells Are Not Silent: Stories of Church Bells in China (CreateSpace, 2016), a collection of stories of the bells of Chinese churches and the stories of faith that link Christians in China to their confreres overseas, as well as the past with the present and the future.
Ms. Pittman has been a frequent participant and presenter at China Association conferences over the years.