Uoldelul Chelati Dirar

Collaborazione e conflitti: Michele da Carbonara e l'organizzazione della Prefettura Apostolica dell'Eritrea (1894-1910)

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Father Michele da Carbonara (1836-1910), the first Apostolic Prefect of Eritrea, influenced substantially the development of missionary activities in Eritrea. His efforts were oriented toward a complete reorganisation of the mission both from a spiritual as well as a territorial point of view. In his effort Michele da Carbonara, as will happen to his colonial counterpart Governor Ferdinando Martini, did not have adequate material resources and had to deal with a very tight budget. For that reason the capuchin missionary tried to establish a relationship of close co-operation with colonial authorities in order to build the so-called "missione italiana" or Italian mission. However, missionary efforts were not matched by a similar attitude on the colonial side. On the opposite the history of those years is full of episodes of conflict between missions and colonial administrations in many areas of missionary intervention like education, anti-slavery campaign and building of churches, due to factors like the liberal and often anti-clerical background of many colonial administrators including Martini and the objective conflict between the needs and ambitions of the two institutions.

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