Published: November 11th 2008November 11th 2008
Coming to Izmir (formerly Smyrna) is special for me because it is the birthplace of Br William Borrell of our Melbourne Province who died last year. Bill went to the international Juniorate and Novitiate and then, following his initial Marist training, volunteered to go to China to teach some of the many children of French immigrants during the early and middle parts of the 20th Century. In the late 1940s he was put under house arrest for twelve months. During my visit to Turkey, there have been frequent references to the silk trade route between China and Europe via Turkey. Having grown up in Smyrna, Bill would have been very aware of this trading path, especially for handpainted porcelain artefacts.