Is now available the number 44 of Islamochristiana, entirely dedicated to Maurice Borrmans, M.Afr., who founded the journal in 1975 together with the PISAI staff, remained its editor almost interruptedly until 2004, and to which he collaborated until the end of his life, in 2017. Contributions, requested from friends, former students and collaborators, did not necessarily had to concern his writings or his academic life, but rather had to be dedicated to his particular interests in the field of Islamic studies. The result is a substantial and very interesting number.
The first three articles directly concern Father Borrmans: Archbishop Michael Fitzgerald, his confrere, traces a brief biographical profile, with particular attention to his intellectual and academic path, which completes the In Memoriam appeared in Islamochristiana 43/2017 by André Ferré, M.Afr.; Giampiero Alberti, a priest of the Diocese of Milan, presents a moving testimony of his friend Maurice; Vincent Feroldi, Director of the “Service national pour les relations avec les musulmans de la Conférence des évêques de France”, makes his reflection on Borrmans’ passion for dialogue with Muslims. The study of the Qur’ān is one of the specific interests of Father Maurice, so the articles by Geneviève Gobillot, Paolo Branca, Michel Lagarde and Bartolomeo Pirone are focused on different aspects of its study and on the problem of its translation. Giuseppe Rizzardi reflects on the figure of Jesus in Islam and Christianity.
Some other contributions concern the kalām, the falsafa, Islamic studies and the relations between Christians and Muslims. Michel Younès questions the relationship between the Qur’ān and the kalām on the one hand, and between the Bible and Christian theology on the other; Diego Sarrió Cucarella presents a treatise of Ḥunayn b. Isḥāq, Nestorian author of the ninth century, concerning the criteria to identify the true religion, while Emmanuel Pisanireports on the fierce criticism of Abū Ḥāmid al-Ġazālī against the bāṭinites missionaries; finally, Cristina D’Ancona reflects on the cosmological argument that necessarily postulates a divine cause, examining it in kalām and falsafa up to Thomas Aquinas. Family law, one of the beloved topics of Father Borrmans from the beginning, was the subject of his doctoral thesis and the subject of his teachings. This is why Roberta Aluffi Beck-Peccoz dedicates a study to the interesting topic of kafāla in the field of Islamic law. As father Maurice Borrmans was passionate about the Muslim world and the Islamic-Christian relations, Laurent Basanese presents a critical overview of recent reforms in Islam, while Emil Anton examines the thought of Pope Benedict XVI about the connection between religion and violence.
The series of contributions closes with the articles by Rémi Caucanas who remembers Étienne Renaud, friend and confrere of father Borrmans, former General of the White Fathers and Rector of PISAI; and by Alan Godlas and Jason Welle who take up a small note appeared in the Encyclical Laudato Si’ of Pope Francis about ‘Alī al-Ḫawwāṣ (see Islamochristiana43/2017).
A rich series of Book reviews and a relevant collection of Notes and Documents complete the volume.
Presentation initially published ont the website of the PISAI : https://en.pisai.it/the-pisai/news/2019/april/islamochristiana-44-in-memoriam-maurice-borrmans-mafr/