A lively biography by a Louvain priest about a missionary, a fellow Belgian, the man who, after the Pope, was more influential than any other in establishing (at Rome) the Chinese character of the Catholic Church in pre-war China:- Pere Vincent Lebbe, founder of the Society of Auxiliaries of the Missions, known in Chinese as Lei-Ming-Yuan (thunder in the distance). It was through his efforts, in the face of fierce opposition from well-meaning fellow-missioners whose imaginations could not embrace the picture of a stable ""Chinese Church"" detached from the immediate local supervision of the white man, that Pius XI in 1926 created the first native hierarchy for China by consecrating six Chinese Bishops. This was the work of a stern realist, no visionary, as subsequent events were to prove. The devoted founder-missioner died in 1940 on the eve of the war that would all but destroy his Church in China. The book is lightly yet authoritatively written, with tactful reserve and restraint, and is admirably readable. Recommended for Lenten Reading.