The Pontificio Istituto Missioni Estere (Pontifical Institute for Foreign Missions; Pime) is the first missionary institute founded in Italy. Pime is not the original name: in 1926, according to Pope Pius XI’s will, two «Seminaries for the Foreign Missions» merged into one structure, adopting the present name. The first Seminary was founded in Milan in 1850; the second one was founded in Rome in 1871. Since its very beginning, Pime has maintained its peculiar characteristic: to give priests and laymen the chance “to go and work in a mission” without becoming members of a religious congregation. During its 150-year lifetime, its missionaries have ministered in many different countries all over the world. Today they maintain a presence in Algeria, Bangladesh, Brazil, Cambodia, Cameroun, China, Ivory Coast, Philippines, Japan, Guinea-Bissau, India, Italy, Papua New Guinea, Thailand and United States.
The Pime Mission Center in Milano was opened in the early Sixties to give a base to the manifold activities carried out in the area. It is located in via Mosé Bianchi, 94. This is the place where the magazines Mondo e Missione, I.M. and Missionari del Pime are made ready; this facility houses the Museo Popoli e Culture (Peoples and Cultures Museum) and a broad Library. An Auditorium and various halls house meeting, conferences, shows … The Shop of the World Ceam offers a big selection of religious and missionary books, several items from the Fair and Solidarity Trade and artistic products coming from Asia, Africa and Latin America. Pime Center organizes a lot of activities of missionary animation, most of which devoted to young people. Finally, the Mission Help Office plays an important role by collecting funds to be assigned to the missions, to the institutions for international cooperation, to the distance adoptions and to the development projects for the Global South.