Centenary of the Mission of the Augustinian Recollects in Shangqiu, Henan, China (1924-2024).

This is the motto of the I Centenary of the mission of Shangqiu, Henna, China, and a prominent element in the commemorative poster of this event. In 1924, the Augustinian Recollects arrived in Shangqiu (formerly called Kweiteh), and, despite having gone through very complicated vicissitudes, they continue to exercise their pastoral charity until the present moment, they continue to be “sowers of hope.”

The poster for the centenary celebration within the Province of St. Nicholas of Tolentino and the entire Augustinian Recollect Family comprises some fundamental elements. First, we can differentiate two main parts: the text and the images.

The poster’s text is the Centenary’s motto: “Sowers of hope”. This slogan gives meaning to the poster and explains the scene shown. The fonts chosen are intended to be lively and carefree while highlighting the meaning of the above. For this reason, the slogan must have a significant presence within the poster regarding size and location.

In addition, the words “Sowers” and “of hope” have been placed in two different lines and slightly displaced in the horizontal plane to avoid stillness and together with the pattern provided by the white and green color and the difference in typographies, will generate an effect of movement that will attract the attention of the viewer, in such a way that it is the first thing to which we gaze at when encountering the poster.

It is relevant to mention that the logo occupies a central place due to its importance. It collects the primary data of the commemoration and the silhouette of the old Shangqiu cathedral, the mission’s emblematic building. The green color goes in accord with the chromatic environment of the poster. The contrast with the Order’s logo found in the lower information band, along with the link to the province of St. Nicholas of Tolentino’s website. Even though it is less relevant information, it should remain visible. Each is positioned at an angle to create visual balance.

Regarding the images, we see centered and in the foreground the photograph of the Augustinian Recollect missionaries in Shangqiu, who look at the viewer with serene and smiling faces, transmitting an attitude that invites you to approach to find out what this poster is about.

In the photo, the group is presided by Bishop Francisco Javier Ochoa, who wears his solemn clothing. It is the last day of 1939, and he has just ordained the first Chinese Augustinian Recollect priest, José Shan, who appears on his left. To the bishop’s right is the prior provincial, Ricardo Jarauta, who came from Manila for the occasion. Two rows back, beardless and wearing a black scarf, is the secretary accompanying him, Martin Legarra, who would later be named bishop.

In the first row of the protagonists, two young Chinese religious who decided not to wear a coat to proudly show their religious habits, which they had received that day. Their names are Nicholas She and Joseph Wang, and they will both become bishops after the long Maoist persecution.

Behind them, we see a field of golden wheat ready to be picked. This wheat represents the fruits of the work done by missionaries in China. They are the sowers, and now we are the witnesses of the fruits of their harvest, which is excellent and abundant. In the middle of the wheat field, you can see the marks left by a vehicle, generating a road. This also reinforces the meaning that the poster wants to convey since the mission in China has been a path that has been traveled for a long time and has brought us here 100 years after its beginning.

Finally, it is essential to note that the poster includes a sunny day with a blue sky, since with this landscape, the joy of the present is transmitted, of what today we can live thanks to everything cultivated with the help of God, who has gilded the field with his rays of light, giving us, in his Providence, abundance, and blessings for China and the entire Augustinian Recollect Family, especially for the Province of St. Nicholas of Tolentino.