Still, some virtues are more fundamental than others and I do not think that any one will quarrel with me if, in this case, I take Christlikeness as the great virtue to be outlined. The imitation of Christ is a topic familiar to all, and everyone in his measure knows something, or even much, about the ideals which the word recalls. Moreover, in the case of Saint Ignatius of Loyola this standard is especially appropriate.
For although he had a thousand bright facets in his character, the imitation of Christ was with him a master-passion. The Sacred Name is the greeting formula of every letter, it reappears in almost every paragraph written by him. Christ-study was the kernel of Ignatian spirituality, the imitation of Him was the motive of His follower's life. Ignatius's life, therefore, when studied in the light of this virtue, ought to appear natural and consistent, and its different parts ought to hang together and to make up a lively, veracious whole.