Bishop Melchior Carneiro, SJ
First Bishop of Macao



Scott 420 
MACAO, 1969, 4th centenary of the Santa Casa da Misericórdia featuring Bishop Carneiro, its founder, Scott 420
MACAO, 1976, this 1 pataca stamp was prepared to mark the 4th centenary of the diocese of Macao of which Carneiro was first bishop;
it was not issued, however, though some copies were sold in Lisbon.

Scott 1208 Scott 1209 
MACAO, 2006, the Society of Jesus issue, Scott 1208-1209, with its FDI cancel

With its “Society of Jesus” issue of 4 stamps and a souvenir sheet containing a fifth, Macao marked several anniversaries and also commemorated Jesuit Bishop Melchior [or Belchior] Carneiro, the first bishop of the diocese of Macao. Macao was awarded for this issue the 2007 St. Gabriel Award for the Best Religious Stamps. Melchior Miguel Carneiro was born in Coimbra, Portugal in 1516, and died in Macao August 19, 1583. He entered the Society of Jesus when he was a student at the University of Coimbra, Portugal. After his studies were finished, he was Rector of the College of Évora (1551-53) and Superior of the Professed House in Lisbon (February - June 1553). A little later he accompanied Simón Rodríguez to Rome, where, nominated by John III of Portugal and with the approval of St. Ignatius, Pope Julius III named him titular bishop of Nicea and coadjutor with the right of succession to João Nunes Barreto, the Patriarch of Ethiopia. At the end of 1554 he set sail for India with a group of 12 missionaries, arriving there on April 1, 1555. In Goa he taught moral theology (1555-56) and dogmatic theology (1558). His episcopal ordination took place in Goa in 1562. Pius V, seeing the impossibility of his going to Ethiopia, put Carneiro in charge of the Church in Japan and China (1566) and Pope Gregory XIII appointed him first bishop of the diocese of Macao when it was established January 23, 1576. In Macao he founded the House of Mercy (see below) and Macao's first hospitals and the first western style hospitals in Asia — St. Lazarus and St. Raphael. With the permission of the Holy See and of the Jesuit General Superior Everard Mercurian, he renounced his episcopal office (1881) and lived in the Jesuit community a simple religious life without any position or authority. He died on the point of going to Japan and was buried in St. Paul's in Macao.

A Macao aerogramme (Macao #4) carries the imprinted stamp of the Santa Casa da Misericórdia founded by Bishop Carneiro

Scott 489 Scott 1338
1984, the Holy House of Mercy shows up in an architectural series, Scott 489
2011, public building series, the Hospice of the Holy House, Scott 1338

Holy House of Mercy Hospice of Macao is located in Sao Lázaro district. It was designed in the beginning of the 20th century, the first urbanization experience in terms of social welfare structure. By the end of the 19th century a Chinese philanthropist donated the land for the construction of a hospice for old women which was built by the beginning of the 20th century. By the middle of 2000, the Hospice ceased to be used as an asylum for old people, having its residents been transferred to a new building. The Hospice is used now as a cultural and creative space. More