Remembering Fr Jerry Martinson SJ

Fr George Gerald “Jerry” Martinson SJ died on May 31 in Taiwan, 50 years after he first arrived in 1967 from the California Jesuit Province.  At the age of 25, he was sent to Taiwan and began working at the Jesuit-run Kuangchi Program Service (KPS).  He became a renowned television producer and host, known to many in Taiwan and China as Uncle Jerry, his screen name in an English teaching television programme he hosted.

In celebration of his life spent evangelising through television and film, here are five things for which Fr Martinson is most remembered.

In the footsteps of Matteo Ricci

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Four centuries after Matteo Ricci arrived in China, Jesuits continue in the way he forged for engaging with the country.  Where Ricci shared his expertise in mathematics, cosmology and astronomy, and brought to the Emperor’s court Western clocks, musical, mathematical and astronomical instruments and cosmological, geographical and architectural works with maps and diagrams, today’s Jesuits share their knowledge of philosophy, ethics and history in a university or research setting.

The most heart-warming Mid-Autumn Festival

The mooncakes might have been hard and the lanterns dim but this celebration of the Mid-Autumn Festival was the most heart-warming one the migrant workers have had in a while.

The Rerum Novarum Centre in Taiwan had invited Vietnamese and Indonesian migrant workers to celebrate the last day of the Mid-Autumn Festival with Taiwanese friends at the Jesuit theologate.