Sunday, July 31, 2011

Tears Of Joy And Consolation

St. Ignatius had a great devotion to the Blessed Trinity. Every day he prayed to each of the three Persons and to the whole Trinity. While thus praying to the Blessed Trinity, the thought came of how to offer fourfold prayers to the Divinity. This thought, however, caused him little or no trouble. Once, while reciting on the steps of the monastery the little hours in honor of the Blessed Virgin, his vision carried him beyond the earth. He seemed to behold the Blessed Trinity in the form of a lyre or harp; this vision affected him so much that he could not refrain from tears and sighs. 
On the same day he accompanied the procession from the church, but even up to the time of dinner he could not withhold his tears, and after dinner his joy and consolation were so great that he could speak of no subject except the Blessed Trinity. 
In these conversations he made use of many different comparisons to illustrate his thoughts. Such an impression was made on him on that occasion that during his after life, whenever he prayed to the Blessed Trinity, he experienced great devotion.
Link (here) to read the biography St. Ignatius

His Baptismal Name Was Eneco

St. Ignatius of Loyola took the name of Ignacio out of devotion for the holy martyr of Antioch. His baptismal name was Eneco or, as he always wrote it, Inigo.
He was the youngest of the sons of Don Beltran Yafiez de Loyola and Dona Marina Saenz de Licona y Balda, born in 1491 at Loyola, near the town of Azcoitia in the province of Guipuzcoa in Spain. The paternal house is carefully preserved, enclosed in a noble College, and every room in it is a chapel. 
The whole forms a singularly devout sanctuary, in the midst of the very Catholic population of the Basque provinces, which regard St. Ignatius with pride and affection as their Patron Saint.
Link (here) to The Month

Saturday, July 30, 2011

A Prayer For The Feast Day Of Saint Ignatius Of Loyola

O God, by whose grace thy servant Ignatius, enkindled with the fire of thy love, became a burning and a shining light in thy Church:
Grant that we also may be aflame with the spirit of love and discipline, and may ever walk before thee as children of light; through Jesus Christ our Lord, 
who with thee, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, liveth and reigneth, one God, now and for ever.
Link (here) to Titus One Nine

Friday, July 29, 2011

Translation Of The Original Jesuit Contitutions From The Latin Into English

Quod ad voluntatem, ut universae virtutis et perfectionis spiritualis studiosi sint, quieti, constantes, strenui in iis, quae ad divinum servitium aggrediuntur ; quique Zelo accensi sint pro animarum salute; et ea de causa ad nostrum institutum (quod ad illas juvandas et disponendas ad ultimi sui finis de manu Dei creatoris nostri ac Domini consecutionem recta tendit) sint affecti.
Google translation of the above text. 
As to the will, as of power and perfection of all the students of the spiritual they are, in quietness and the stout of us, energetic In the things which God 's service to the attacked and those who are being inflamed with zeal for the salvation of souls, the conditions, and reason, in our present purpose (which is to them, to assist in and be disposed according to of the last of their end, to the out of the hand of God the Creator of the Lord of us and of the attainment of the line tends to) they are affected.
Link (here) to the readable text
Link (here) to the St. Ignatius' original Latin text
Link (here) to Fr. Z's commentary on Google's Latin translator

Stoic Virtues And St. Ignatius

Ignatius Loyola’s said he would require 15 minutes to accept a hypothetical dissolution of his Society of Jesus. That’s right.
The great man said it would take him 15 minutes. To accept the crushing loss of his life’s work. 
It’s what he preached, of course, variously known as detachment, indifference, abandonment to Divine Providence, and other Stoic virtues.

Link (here) to Jim Bowman's Blithe Spirit blog.

Jesuit From Bagladesh On St. Ignatius of Loyola

Ever since I joined the Jesuits, he has become my ‘FATHER’. The more I read about him or listen to someone about him he becomes more real to me. 
I am fascinated by his spirituality, philosophy and idealism of life. I have encountered a number of Jesuits, who have lived out or are living out the life of St Ignatius.
Link (here) to the Jesuit Scholastic Ripon Rosario's full blog post on St.Ignatius, his blog is entitled Ripon Speaks.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Ignatius Before Manresa

The earliest biographers make statements which obtain a new significance when compared with these early documents. Polanco, a contemporary, puts it thus :
"The life he then led was far from being spiritual. Like other young men living at court or intent on a soldier's career, he was distinctly free in making love to women, and was devoted to sports and sword-play over points of honor."
Such failings are common enough in gilded youth in every age, but especially at the beginning of the sixteenth century. That was not a generation hardened in vice ; yet it cannot, alas! be called pure. And the chief centers of decadence were the circles amid which Inigo lived.
From the first chapter of the book entitled, St. Ignatius of Loyola: Imitator of Christ By Fr. John Hungerford Pollen, S.J. published in 1922, read the quote (here).

St. Ignatius of Loyola And The Moor

St. Ignatius of Loyola and the Moor
While he travelled alone, engaged in his meditations, he was accosted by a man of the unbelieving Moorish race which had once occupied almost the whole of Spain, and which though subjugated still remained in considerable numbers in the southern and western parts of the Peninsula,
Christians in outward show, but secretly followers of Mahomet. The two travellers having saluted one another, and Ignatius having told the Moor the place whither he was going, they entered into a discussion concerning the Blessed Virgin. Though the Moor admitted that she had conceived without loss of her virginity, he denied that she remained a virgin after the birth of her Son. 
Ignatius, as a good Catholic, could not comprehend how in matters of faith, it was possible to admit one portion of the truth and reject another, and tried in vain to bring him to a better state of mind by reasons and comparisons, speaking with such vehemence that his opponent, who saw with what sort of a person he had to deal, deemed it prudent to take himself off, and so without a word more suddenly turned aside to a town that was near. Well was it for him that he did so, as Ignatius was on the point of taking him more seriously to task than he ought perhaps to have done, or than the other could have imagined. Scarce had the Moor left him, than, indignant at the blasphemy spoken against the Holy Virgin, he doubted whether he ought not even then to hasten in pursuit of him and wash out the injury in his blood. This, as he soon reflected, was to act more like the knight-errant than the apostle, and so a conflict arose within him, his feelings on the one side urging him to punish the guilty upon his own private authority, whilst reason told him on the other that he had no right to do so, and between these he knew not how to decide. In his doubt he resolved to leave the matter to God; and having arrived at a place where two ways parted, one of which led into the town whither the Moor had gone, he let fall the bridle on the mule's neck, and left it to choose which way to go. "If it takes the road," he thought, "which the blasphemer is gone, it is a token that I ought to pursue and punish him." The mule, however, took the way towards the mountain, and thus his conscience was set at rest, and he continued his journey without further thought of vengeance.
Link (here) to the full account and the book entitled, The Life of the St. Ignatius of Loyola by Fr. Genelli, S.J.

The Good Things, The Graces, The Gifts Received.

"It seems to me, in light of the divine Goodness, though others may think differently, that ingratitude is one of the things most worthy of detestation before our Creator and Lord, and before all creatures capable of his divine and everlasting glory, out of all the evils and sins which can be imagined. 
For it is a failure to recognize the good things, the graces, the gifts received. As such, it is the cause, beginning, and origin of all evils and sins. 
On the contrary, recognition and gratitude for the good things and gifts received is greatly loved and esteemed both in heaven and on earth."

-St. Ignatius in a letter to Simon Rodrigues, March of 1542. 
Link (here) to Give Me To Your Son

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

"The Heart of Jesus is both passionate and wounded. 
The passion of Jesus for us led to His Passion."
Link (here) to the full post on the Sacred Heart of Jesus 
by Fr. James Kubicki, S.J.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Jesuits Are A Cross Between The U.S. Marines And Hippies

Jim Ryan gave the medicinal history of quinine, the characteristic ingredient in tonic, detailing how Jesuit missionaries learned from South American tribes in the mid-1600s to use the bark of "the fever tree," or cinchona, as a cure for malaria. 
Ryan, who attended a Jesuit high school, described the Jesuits as a cross between the U.S. Marines and hippies, which made them "open-minded and curious" toward this New World cure. 
Their involvement in fever-tree bark earned it the nickname "Jesuits' Bark" or "Jesuit powder." At this point, audiences sampled a thick red sludge - a quinine solution made of one part cinchona bark powder, six parts water. Ryan then spoke about how misunderstandings about the bark coupled with extreme anti-Catholic sentiment prevented quinine from being used in Europe in the late 1600s. The cure was finally resurrected by French scientists in the 1800s following decades of wandering Bolivian jungles and pleading for research money.
Link (here) to NOLA to read the full article.

Jesuit Bill Bischel Showed "Lack Of Remorse" And His Actions "A Form Of Anarchy"

Mug Shot of Fr. William "Bix" Bichsel, S.J.

One example: In a Tacoma, Washington federal courtroom in March, an 84-year-old Society of the Sacred Heart nun, Anne Montgomery, 82-year-old Jesuit priest Bill Bichsel, and three other activists over the age of 60 – another Jesuit priest and two women – were sentenced to jail terms. Montgomery, it should be noted, was one of the Plowshares Eight some 30 years earlier. Their sentences ranged from six to fifteen months, plus one-year supervised release. Their crime: attempting to “symbolically disarm” the Trident II missiles stored in the Strategic Weapons Facility-Pacific (SWFPAC) at the U.S. Naval Base Kitsap-Bangor, 20 miles from Seattle. According to their own account, the five defendants, all affiliated with Disarm Now Plowshares, at 2 A.M. on All-Souls Day in November 2009 “used bolt cutters to break through a [perimeter] chain-link fence in an area where Trident submarine nuclear warheads are stored.” They then walked almost four miles into the base and cut through one double-layered chain link fence and then another barbed wire fence and alarm wires, “ignoring a sign warning that deadly force was authorized against intruders.” They had entered a bunker area that protesters said housed “the largest nuclear weapon stockpile in the United States” – reportedly more than 2,300 warheads, or almost one-fourth of the entire U.S. arsenal. They said their action was designed “to call attention to the illegality and immorality of the existence of the first-strike Trident weapons system.” After putting up banners and scattering blood and sunflower seeds, and hammering symbolically on a road and fences, “they prayed until they were arrested,” thrown to the ground, handcuffed and hooded. They said they were then questioned by base security, the FBI and the NCIS (Naval Criminal Investigative Service). In a joint statement after their arrests, they further explained their motivation: “As U.S. citizens we are responsible under the Nuremberg Principles for this threat of first-strike terrorism hanging over the community of nations, rich and poor.” Before their sentencing on trespassing and property destruction charges, each of the defendants spoke and‚ “focused on the personal responsibility they feel to disarm nuclear weapons, and their desire to prevent pain, suffering, and death‚” for “those deprived by our wars and military budget of a human way of life.” The judge, noting the defendants’ “lack of remorse,” called their protest “a form of anarchy” that could lead to a “breakdown in the social order.” Some 250 supporters of the group had turned out for a pre-sentencing rally featuring song and prayer.
Link (here) to Democracy Gone Astray to read the full article.
In 2011, the Society of Jesus in the United States ordained 11 men to the priesthood. 
Read about them (here)

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Fr. John P. Markoe, S.J. "The True Church Of Jesus Christ"


    Jesus Christ established only one Church. He said, "Thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my Church." Notice He does not say Churches. He said, "There shall be made one fold and one shepherd."  In His prayer at the last supper He said, "I pray for them also who through their word shall believe in Me; that they all  may be one, as Thou, Father, in Me and I in Thee, that they also may be one in Us; that the world may believe that Thou hast sent Me."
    Today we see many Churches. We see Catholic, Lutheran, Baptist, Methodist, Episcopalian, Presbyterian, and many other kinds of Churches. But Christ founded one Church, therefore all these different denominations cannot be His. If you invite a friend to dine at your house and many guests come, having invitations, you know that these invitations are false, because you only wrote one. Christ founded only one Church.  Therefore, there is only one true Church. Consequently, all other Churches must be false.
     Christ said, "He that is not with Me is against Me."  Therefore, those who do not belong to that one Church of Christ, are against Him. They are associated with the enemies of Christ. They may not mean to be against Him, yet they are against Him.  Is it not deplorable to be against Christ, to be among they enemies of God! How said to die amongst the enemies of God! How miserable the condition of those who die in that state!
     How can it be avoided? By immediately becoming a friend of God. By joining the one true Church of Christ. That is the only way. But what is that one true Church? Christ speaking to His followers, said, "You are the light of the world.  A city seated on a Mountain cannot be his"  His Church, therefore cannot be hard to find!
     Which Church goes back to Jesus Christ and the twelve Apostles. A family is Irish if of Irish descent. Similarly, that Church is the true Church of Christ, which goes back to Christ. The only Church which goes back to Christ is the Catholic Church.  Therefore, it is the only true Church of Christ.  All others, started by men, are impostures.
       The Lutheran Church was founded by Luther. It is Luther's Church not Christ'sThe Baptist Church was started in our own country in the year 1639, less than three hundred years ago, by Roger Williams. It is not the Church of Christ, but of Roger Williams.  The Methodist Church was started in England in the year 1739, less than two hundred years ago, by John WesleyIt cannot be the Church of Christ. So likewise all the Protestant Churches were started by men. None of them existed four hundred years ago. Therefore, not one of them founded by Christ.  Christ founded His Church in Palestine, almost two thousand years ago. The Catholic Church alone existed since the days of Christ.  It alone goes back to Christ and the Apostles.  It is of Divine descent from Christ Himself.
       It is the same Church that Christ built upon a rockHe said, "The gates of hell shall not prevail against it."   "Behold I am with you you all days even to the consummation of the world." That is, His Church will last in all its purity, until the end of time.  He did His work well.  Men cannot build new and better Churches than the one Christ built!
John Wesley
      "He that is not with Me is against Me."  If you love Jesus, you will prefer any evil, even death itself, to being against Him; to being a help to His enemies.  "He that gathereth not with Me, scattereth." What sacrifices did you not make in the late war because you loved America! Will you not do something to show that you love God?  Would you have loved America if you had belonged to the army of her enemy?  Do you love God by remaining among the enemies of Christ?
      But you may say you are to old to change. To be a Christian and to love God is good enough.  But you must love God in the way He wants to be loved.  You do not love God the way he wants to be loved unless you do what He demands, unless you belong to the Church He founded for your welfare.
      It is never to late to begin.  The twelve Apostles were born in the Jewish religion.  Their forefathers had been Jews more than a thousand years. Yet they left the old Jewish religion to be true followers of Christ.
      A sensible man will gladly return to the right road from which he has wondered.  Thousands have done so and found supreme happiness in the Catholic Church, the true Church of Jesus Christ.

This essay comes from the booklet entitled, The Triumph of the Church written by Fr. John P. Markoe, S.J. originally published in 1926. This booklet contains a Nihil Obstat by Joannes Rothensteiner Censor Librorum Sti. Ludovici die 11 Nov., 1926, an Imprimatur by Joannes J. Glennon Archiepiscopus Sti. Ludovici Sti. Ludovici die 11 Nov., 1926

For further information on Fr. John P. Markoe, S.J. go (here) , (here) , (here) and (here)
Fr. John P. Markoe, S.J.
An All-American football player and graduate of West Point with Dwight Eisenhower and Omar Bradley; 
a soldier who was jailed for drunkenness in a Mexican saloon and later drummed out of the Army; a lumberjack in Minnesota; a buck private in the Minnesota Guard who was called back for active duty during World War I; a Roman Catholic priest who had given up drinking and smoking but was kicked out of  St. Louis University for being a civil rights activist; 
a mathematics professor at Creighton University. All this describes Fr. John Markoe, S J.   

Saturday, July 23, 2011

When God Wants You

A young Jerry Brown in boxing gloves
Reams have been written about Jerry Brown's relationship with his father. When Jerry was in his final year at St. Ignatius High School, he decided at age 17 to become a priest. He needed parental permission to enter the Sacred Heart Novitiate in Los Gatos. It wasn't forthcoming. 'Wait until next year,' his father suggested, hoping, so the story goes, that young Jerry would change his mind and eventually follow in his footsteps: university, law school and politics. 'When God wants you,' young Brown protested, 'He doesn't want you next year.' (Springfield Union, June 6, 1976)
Link (here) to the full article at Mercury News

Friday, July 22, 2011

Former Jesuit Served In Iran

Monsignor Milton L. Reisch, a Catholic priest, teacher and retreat master who was pastor of Our Lady of Divine Providence Parish in Metairie for 17 years, died July 18 after complications from surgery in mid-May. He was 81. Monsignor Milton L. Reisch His 51 years as a priest began as a member of the Jesuit order, teaching math and physics at Jesuit High School through the 1960s. Monsignor Reisch then ran Catholic missions in Mississippi, conducted retreats at the order’s Manresa retreat house and, while on a leave of absence, taught school in Iran, where he was the only priest in Shiraz, a city of more than 1 million people. Returning from Iran, Monsignor Reisch left the Jesuits to become a priest for the Archdiocese of New Orleans.
Link (here) to read the full obituary at

Tomes On Theology

St. Peter's College Library
At my own small Jesuit college in Jersey City, the library has had no choice but to winnow down its books due to lack of space, not to mention the increasingly daunting task of taking care of all those dust-collecting volumes. Books do mold and a leak in the library’s roof and occasional break-downs in the air-conditioning system do not help. Furthermore, many of the books in our college library were simply not the sort of thing 21st-century students majoring in Criminal Justice, Accounting, Biochemistry and Nursing would find useful. Holdings from the libraries of now-closed Jesuit seminaries (like the one formerly in Shrub Oak, New York) found their way to us, but we really didn’t have too many readers for tomes on theology, journals about linguistics and The New Criterion. Faculty were asked to choose journals, duplicates of books are still on sale for $1 and a few volumes were discovered in boxes beside trash bins by some of my students, who hurried to rescue them.
Link (here) to read the full article

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Agere Contra

For St. Ignatius of Loyola, spiritual desolation is a condition whereby the individual experiences a darkness and unsettledness of the soul accompanied by the diminishment, if not, loss of the theological virtues of faith, hope and charity (SpEx 317). In this condition, the individual often finds himself being apathetic, lazy, sad, depressed -- a condition which results in a sensation of being separated from or abandoned by God. On this particular point regarding desolation, Jesuit Jules J. Toner poses an interesting question,
if spiritual desolation of itself tends to destroy faith, hope and charity and if God loves us, why does he leave us in darkness with the anguish of feeling separated from him? This question is especially pointed in the teaching of Ignatius, who says that God loves us so much that whatever he wills for us, permissively or positively, in any concrete situation is always for his greater glory in us”. 
Although we believe that God permits certain difficulties in our lives, nevertheless, it does not make it any easier for us to understand or accept it. The question then, still stands, “If spiritual desolation is allowed by God for our good, then why does Ignatius urge us to resist it, even to counter attack?”
Indeed, the very principle of agere contra (SpEx 13, 322) clearly indicates that we are not to sit still during desolation, but to “react against” it. “Because essential to [desolation] is the connotation of conflict and a struggle, to go against, to oppose” (Diccionario de Espiritualidad Ignaciana. Bilbao 2007, p. 576). Why then does God permit desolation to afflict us and yet he still expects us to react against it? 
Perhaps that is precisely the point, that is, the important thing is in what “happens” to the individual during the time of desolation and how he reacts against it. There is a certain dynamic in that whole process (of how the individual experiences and reacts against the desolation) that can provide and important lesson to the individual, which is perhaps the reason why God permits the desolation. 
Link (here) to read article entitled,  Learning from Desolation by Fr. Andrew Garcia, S.J.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Fr. Thomas Reese, S.J. Says "Archbishop Chaput Will Be A Real Pain In The Neck"

Father Thomas Reese, a Jesuit priest is regularly questioned by reporters looking for reactions
reduces the appointment to a political problem, saying that Archbishop Charles Chaput will be a real pain in the neck for the Democratic Party. 
Writing in the National Catholic Reporter, Michael Sean Winters, complains of the election of Archbishop Chaput. Liberal Catholic commentators were clearly shaken by appointment Chaput.
Link (here)  to the Social News Post

Fr. John Dear, S.J. Calls The United States, "The Biggest Global Terrorists"

Fr. John Dear, S.J.
In less than two months, the US military and its media machine will tell us to mark the tenth anniversary of the September 11th attacks by celebrating their warmaking efforts --and continuing to live in fear. We were attacked, so we bombed Afghanistan, Iraq and Pakistan, killed hundreds of thousands of people, tortured thousands more, rebuilt our nuclear installations, threw out our basic liberties and spied on millions. In our so-called “war on terrorism,” we became the biggest global terrorists, threatening the planet with drones, bombs, and a spanking-new nuclear weapons arsenal.
Link (here) to read the full diatribe.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Jesuit On Educating Your Child

The Declaration on Christian Education, (5, Second Vatican Council) which states that, “Parents have the primary and inalienable duty of educating their children, and must enjoy true freedom in choosing schools.” With this freedom, parents can, in good conscience, reject counterfeit Christianity, heavily drenched in psychology of self-esteem and a secular humanism that now prevails in too many Catholic parochial schools.
Link (here) to the full article by Fr. John Hardon, S.J.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Former Jesuit Scholastic, Current Federal Prisoner

Former Jesuit Chris Spicer leading a White Rose prayer service
Furthermore, though it may not seem as evident amidst the multiplying fences, hovering helicopters, and armed police, there has indeed been progress in the struggle against militarization, and the movement still draws from deep wells of creativity. This year, although a significant setback and a great deal of confusion resulted from the indiscriminate arrests of 26 people (most of whom did not intend to risk arrest), many others willingly participated in creative acts of nonviolent resistance throughout the weekend. About 10 to 12 people were arrested after briefly blocking a road into Ft. Benning with a large sign that read, “Stop: This is the End of the Road for the SOA.” 
Father Louis Vitale and Nancy Smith entered the base from the highway ramp, and David Omandi of the LA Catholic Worker and (former Oregon Province Jesuit Scholastic) Christopher Spicer of the White Rose Catholic Worker (Students of Loyola  University Chicago) jumped over the first set of barbed wire fencing at the entrance to the base. 
And so I look to the resisters for energy, those who come year after year and those who engage for the first time.
Link (here) to the blog entitled entitled Loretto Volunteers
Chris Spicer pleaded "No contest" and is serving 6 months in Federal Prison (here) and (here)
Chris Spicer as Jesuit (here) , (here) and (here)

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Saint Ignatius In Ecstasy

Santa Lucia Hospital was the first place where St. Ignatius stayed in during his stay in Manresa. According to Manresa traditions, one day in the evening the Pilgrim had a spiritual ecstasy in the Hospital Chapel and for eight days and nights he was motionless on the floor. It was then that God conveyed to him the idea on how should be the Society of Jesus.

Link (here)

St. Ignatius On, "The Infinite Sweetness Of The Divinity”

St. Ignatius says in the “Spiritual Exercises,” we should try to capture “the infinite perfume and the infinite sweetness of the divinity” (n. 124), going forward from that finite revealed truth from which we have begun. While he raises us up, God is free to “empty” us of all that holds us back in this world, to draw us completely into the Trinitarian life of his eternal love. However, this gift can only be granted “in Christ through the Holy Spirit,” and not through our own efforts, withdrawing ourselves from his revelation.

Link (here) to the full post at the website/blog entitled, Catholic Spiritual Direction.

Etching of St. Ignatius at Manresa

The Purpose Of The Society

Ignatius entering Jerusalem
The two purposes Ignatius had for the mission to Jerusalem, to derive spiritual consolation and to help souls, were preserved in the new mission through Rome to the universal Church.  The apostolic intention, “to help souls,” grew into the fundamental purposes of the Society.  A parallel expression, “the progress of souls,” appears at the beginning of the first version of the Formula of the Institute (Regimini militantis Ecclesiae) in 1540, where the Society’s purpose is given as: “to strive especially for the progress of souls in Christian life and doctrine and for the propagation of the faith by the ministry of the word, by spiritual exercises and works of charity, and specifically by the education of children and unlettered persons in Christianity.”  This intention of helping souls remained in the definitive version of the Formula of the Institute (Exposcit debitum) in 1550, and of course in the Constitutions.  To “help souls” has, of course, their salvation in mind, as stated in the General Examen, where the purpose of the Society is expressed in terms of salvation, first of the members of the Society themselves and then of others:  “with that same grace to labor strenuously in giving aid toward the salvation and perfection of the souls of their neighbors”
Link (here) to read the entire work by Fr. Matthew Monnig, S.J.  
Photo (source)

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Jesuit On Home Schooling

“Homeschooling in the United States is the necessary concomitant of a culture in which the Church is being opposed on every level of her existence and, as a consequence, given the widespread secularization in our country, homeschooling is not only valuable or useful but it is absolutely necessary for the survival of the Catholic church in our country.” 
“How do we know that homeschooling is necessary? First, we know it from divine revelation. The early Church is normative, not only on what we should believe as Catholics but on how we ought to learn our faith… and live it. There were not established Catholic schools in the Roman empire back in the first 300 years of the Church’s history. 
Except for parents, becoming, believing and being heroic Catholics in the early Church, nothing would have happened. The Church would have died out before the end of the first century.”
Link (here) to read the full article by Melody Lyons at The Catholic Exchange.

Is JVC A Minor League For Jesuits?

Many of the people revel in the challenges and take joy and pride in their way of life.  Justin, who is finishing up two years with the Jesuit Volunteer Corp., said he “wanted to come to the Bush Country of Alaska ever since he was a little kid.”  He is discerning the priesthood, and has been leading the youth group for 8th-12th graders.
Link (here) to the full blog post at Catholic Extension.

Friday, July 15, 2011

British Jesuits To Sell Their 7th Century Catholic Treasure To Protestant Anglicans

Durham Cathedral
A SEVENTH Century book associated with one of the North-East’s greatest saints could soon be displayed in the region. The British Library, Durham University and Durham Cathedral hope to raise £2.75m to buy the St Cuthbert Gospel, sister to the famous Lindisfarne Gospels, from its Jesuit owners. If successful, the manuscript would be housed half the time at Durham’s World Heritage Site and half at the British Library.
The Latin manuscript of the four gospels that Cuthbert carried with him, formerly known as the Stonyhurst Gospel, is the earliest surviving intact European book. It complements the Lindisfarne Gospels, which are also strongly linked to St Cuthbert. It was produced in the North-East and was buried with the saint on Lindisfarne in 698AD, and found in his coffin in Durham Cathedral in 1104. The National Heritage Memorial Foundation (NHMF) has given £4.5m to the fundraising campaign and other money is in the pipeline, leaving £2.75m to be raised to hit the £9m purchase price by March 31. 
The Very Reverend Michael Sadgrove, Dean of Durham, said: “This is a wonderful book that links us directly to the Saxon Christianity of the North of England, and to the North’s best-loved saint, Cuthbert himself. “Durham Cathedral owes its very existence to him, and we prize not only his memory, but also the treasures associated with him here at the cathedral, such as his pectoral cross and portable altar. “I wholeheartedly welcome and support the campaign to save this book for the nation, for it is a vital part of our cultural and spiritual heritage.“  Like the Lindisfarne Gospel Book, the Cuthbert Gospel speaks powerfully about Northumbria’s golden age, whose spiritual vision, intellectual energy and artistic achievement continue to inspire us today. “We are in the British Library’s debt for having taken this initiative. We must make sure it succeeds.” The gospel has been on long-term loan to the British Library since 1979 from owner the Society of Jesus (British Province).
Link (here) to the full article at The Durham Times 

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Jesuits Receed From Toledo Spain

San Ildefonso in Toledo, Spain
After centuries (except for the periods of abolition and expulsion - for instance, during the Second Republic),
the last Jesuits are leaving the Primate Archdiocese of Spain, Toledo. There are no new members to replace them in the staff of the majestic Iglesia de San Ildefonso (Iglesia de los Jesuitas). As F.J de la Cigoña, who reports this, asks: what places will they abandon next? Loyola (Azpeitia, Guipúzcoa)? Xavier (Navarre)?
The first Jesuit to visit Toledo, in 1535-36, was Loyola himself, a few years before going to Rome and after definitively leaving Azpeitia on his return from Paris, where he and his companions had taken the Montmartre vow.
Link (here) to Rorate Caeli

Jesuit Chronicles

A Bronze Fo Dog
The remains of the goods found probably belonged to the San Felipe galleon, which sailed carrying a large cargo of Chinese porcelain from the Ming Dynasty and which disappeared without a trace in 1576, maritime historian Edward Von der Porten said. The Asian sculpture, located underwater by means of signals from a metal detector, 
coincides with descriptions noted in the 18th century by Jesuit missionaries such as Fr. Fernando Consag at an earlier moment and later by Fr. Miguel del Barco, Junco said. "The goods we are studying coincide with the notes of Fr. Miguel del Barco, who in his chronicles says that some Indians brought to one of the missions a bronze candlestick in the shape of a dog," the archaeologist said. "The object we found is probably similar to the one described by the priest, or it could be the lid of a censer," Junco said. 
The so-called "Dogs of Fo" - the Chinese word for Buddha is Fo - actually represent lions and were considered protectors of sacred sanctuaries, usually Buddhist temples.

Link (here) to the full article at Fox News

Jesuits In Afganistan

Indian Jesuit Fr. Stan Fernandes SJ, Director of the JRS in Afghanistan in a note sent to Fides. The Director notes that  
"children and young people are tired of war and very few of them have the opportunity to go to school". Out of 33 million Afghans, "only 10 thousand are rebels, but monopolise the interest and resources of the international community. Our mission is to give voice and hope to 99.9% of the Afghan population, who struggle to get ahead and hope with all their heart to build for a better tomorrow". "Together with the Afghan population – he continues - we hope and pray for peace and we continue our journey among these people, reaching out to the most marginalised. Young people who have lived through war and exile, will lead the country tomorrow. This generation needs to be empowered in order to focus their energies, enthusiasm and potential, to promote peace and development in the country". 
The JRS have been working in Afghanistan since 2005, when a team of Indian Jesuits started programs in the field of education: today in the "Technical High School" in Herat, there are 600 students taking courses in electricity, electronics, construction, trade. Since 2006, the religious also teach English, computer science, biology and physics to more than 3,000 university students in Herat, Bamiyan and Kabul. In another iniative, the Jesuits assisting the refugees who have returned to Afghanistan in the city of Sohadat, 35 km from Herat, provide them with food assistance, health services and education, in a primary school attended by over 200 children, and through a clinic that takes care of 250 patients a week. 
Link (here) to Fides

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Jesuit Refused Bodyguards

Father John Hardon, S.J. was a friend of Father Alfred Kunz, the canon lawyer and Diocese of Madison, Wis., priest whose 1998 murder remains unsolved
Father Kunz reportedly had been working on cases involving clergy misconduct and the h@mosexual network, and Father Hardon, who was interviewed by investigators for several hours, is said to have told associates that he believed the murder was connected to the corrupt element in the Church. 
Some of those who were close to Father Hardon even wanted to provide him with bodyguards, but he refused. Also of note: He reportedly believed the case would not be solved.
Link (here) to read Matt Abbott's full article at Renew America
Photo is of Fr. John Hardon, S.J. located (here)

Jesuits Find Michelangelo

A previously unknown painting by Michelangelo has been hanging on the wall of an Oxford University residence for Jesuit scholars since the 1930s, a respected Italian expert claims.
Infrared technology has revealed that the painting at Campion Hall, previously believed to have been the work of Michelangelo's lesser-known contemporary Marcello Venusti, was likely painted by Michelangelo himself, says Antonio Forcellino. The painting, bought at an auction in the 1930s, has been removed from the residence and sent to a museum for safekeeping. 
"It's a very beautiful piece, but far too valuable to have on our wall any more," the master of Campion Hall tells the BBC. "Its value in the three years I've been master has gone up tenfold, even if it's not by Michelangelo. No doubt the art historians will argue the points to and fro."
Link (here)

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

He Called Those To Himself Whom He Willed


1. “It is for their sakes that I sanctify myself, so that they, too, 
may be sanctified by the truth” (Jn 17:19).
Do I really take holiness seriously in my priesthood? Am I convinced that
the success of my priestly ministry comes from God and that, with the
grace of the Holy Spirit, I have to identify myself with Christ and give my
life for the salvation of the world?

2. “This is my body” (Mt 26:26).
Is the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass the centre of my spiritual life? Do I
prepare well to celebrate Mass? Do I devoutly celebrate the Mass? Do I
make an act of thanksgiving after Mass? Is the Mass the centre of my day
in giving thanks and praise to God for his blessings? Do I have recourse
to his goodness? Do I make reparation for my sins and for those of all

3. “Zeal for your house consumes me” (Jn 2:17).
Do I celebrate the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass according to the rites and
rubrics established by the Church? Do I celebrate Holy Mass with a right
intention and according to the approved liturgical books? Am I attentive
to the sacred species conserved in the tabernacle and careful to renew it
periodically? Do I pay due attention to the sacred vessels and ensure their
conservation? Do I wear in a dignified fashion all of the sacred vestments
prescribed by the Church? Am I conscious that I act in persona Christi Capitis?

4. “Remain in my love” (Jn 15:9).
Do I enjoy being in the presence of Christ in the Blessed Sacrament, in
meditation and in silent adoration? Am I faithful to the daily visit to the
Blessed Sacrament? Is the tabernacle my true treasure?

5. “Explain the parable to us” (Mt 13:36).
Do I carefully make a daily meditation and try to overcome all distractions
which separate me from God? Do I seek illumination from the Lord
whom I serve? Do I assiduously meditate on the Sacred Scriptures? Do I
carefully say my habitual prayers?

6. It is necessary “pray always and without tiring” (Lk 18:1)

Do I celebrate the Liturgy of the Hours every day in an integral,
dignified, attentive and devout manner? Am I faithful to my commitment to
Christ in this important aspect of my ministry, praying in
the name of the entire Church?

7. “Come and follow me” (Mt 19:21).
Is the Lord Jesus Christ the true love of my life? Do I joyfully observe
my commitment to love before God in celibate continence? Am I given
to impure thoughts, desires or actions? Do I indulge in improper conversation?
Have I allowed myself to be in the proximate occasion of
sin against chastity? Do I observe custody of the eyes? Have I been
prudent in my dealings with the various categories of persons? Does my
life represent for the faithful a true witness to the fact that holy purity is
possible, fruitful and joyful?

8. “Who are you?” (Jn 1:20).
In my daily life, am I weak, lazy or indolent? Do my conversations conform
to a sense of the natural and supernatural that a priest should have?
Am I careful to ensure that there are no elements of vanity or superficiality
in my life? Are all my actions consistent with my priestly state?

9. The Son of Man has nowhere to lay his head (Mt. 8:20).
Do I love Christian poverty? Does my heart belong to God? Am I spiritually
detached from everything else? Am I prepared to make sacrifices to
better serve God? Am I prepared to give up my comforts, personal plans,
and legitimate contacts, for God? Do I possess superfluous things? Do I
make unnecessary expenditure or am I taken over by consumerism? Do I
use my free time so as to be close to God remembering that I am always
a priest – even at these times of rest or vacation?

10. “You have hidden these things from the wise and learned and 
revealed them to mere children” (Mt 11:25).
Am I guilty of the sins of pride: spiritual difficulties, susceptibility, irritation,
unwillingness to forgive, tendencies to despondency, etc.?
Do I ask God to give me the virtue of humility?

11. “And there fl owed out blood and water” (Jn 19:34).
Am I convinced that when I act “in the person of Christ” that I am
directly involved with the same Body of Christ, the Church? Can I sin
cerely say that I love the Church? Can I sincerely say that I strive with
joy for her growth? Am I concerned for her interests, those of all her
members and for the whole human race?

12. “You are Peter” (Mt 16:18).
Nihil sine Episcopo – nothing without the Bishop – was a saying of St
Ignatius of Antioch. Are these words at the root of my ministry? Do I
receive orders, counsels or correction from my Ordinary with docility?
Do I pray often for the Holy Father? Am I in full communion with his
teaching and intentions?

13. “Love one another” (Jn 13:34).
Have I been charitable in dealing with my brother priests? Does my egoism
leave me indifferent to them? Have I criticised my brother priests?
Have I supported those who are morally or physically ill? Am I committed
to fraternal action so that no one is ever left alone? Do I treat all
my brother priests and all of the laity with the charity and patience of

14. “I am the way, the truth and the life” (Jn 14:6).

Is my knowledge of the teaching of the Church as comprehensive as it
should be? Do I assimilate and transmit her teachings? Am I conscious
that to teach something contrary to the Magisterium, solemn or ordinary,
is gravely abusive and causes damage to the faithful?

15. “Go and sin no more” (Jn 8:11).

Proclamation of the Word leads the faithful to the Sacraments. Do I
regularly go to Confession? Do I frequently go to Confession in accordance
with my state of life and because of the sacred things with which I
am involved? Do I generously celebrate the Sacrament of Penance? Am
I reasonably available to the faithful for spiritual direction and do I set
particular times aside for this purpose? Do I carefully prepare to instruct
in catechesis? Do I preach with zeal and with the love of God?

16. “He called those to himself whom he willed and these went with him” (Mk 3:13).
Am I careful to promote vocations to the priesthood and to the religious
life? Do I promote a greater awareness of the universal call to holiness
among the faithful? Do I encourage the faithful to pray for vocations and
for the sanctification of the clergy?

17. “The Man came not to be served but to serve” (Mt 20:28).
Have I sought to devote myself to others and serve them every day according
to the demands of the Gospel? Do I give witness to the Lord’s
charity by good works? Do I see the presence of Christ in the Cross and
do I see in it the triumph of love? Is my daily activity marked by a spirit
of service? Do I consider the exercise of authority as a form of service?

18. “I thirst” (Jn 19:28).
Have I prayed and generously made sacrifices for the good of the souls
entrusted to my care by God? Do I discharge my pastoral duties? Am I
solicitous for the Holy Souls?

19. Behold your son. Behold your mother (Jn 19: 26-27).

Do I entrust myself, full of hope, to the Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of
Priests, through love and to love all the more her son Jesus Christ? Do
I practice Marian devotion? Do I say the Rosary every day? Do I have
recourse to her maternal intercession in my struggles with the devil,
concupiscence, and the world?

20. “Father, into your hands I commend my spirit” (Lk 23:44).

Am I solicitous in assisting and in administering the sacraments to the
dying? In my personal meditation, in catechesis and in my ordinary
preaching, do I give consideration to the Church’s teaching on the Last
Things? Do I ask for the grace of perseverance? Do I ask the faithful to
do likewise? Do I make frequent and devout suffrage for the souls of the
faithful departed?
Link (here) to 
Issued by the Congregation for the Clergy 

The Daily Examen of St. Ignatius of Loyola (here)

"Soul Of My Saviour"

There are many great hymns written in honour of the Sacred Heart . Among them a tune by the Jesuit William Maher, who also gave us the tune of 'Soul of my Saviour'. The words are a translation of a German original says Monsignor Philip Whitmore , an expression of the international flavour of this devotion .Monsignor Whitmore also explains how these hymns make a strong appeal to our emotions : "....We pray to the Heart of Jesus to touch our cold, ungrateful hearts , and to set them aflame with love for Our Saviour. "  
Listen to this programme produced by Veronica Scarisbrick (here) at Vatican Radio

The Simplex Priest

Seminaries were invented by the Council of Trent. Before then we had the apprentice system in most of Europe. A candidate would live near the priest who showed him what he needed to know, and then the priest would recommend him to the bishop when he believed the candidate was prepared. During the Ottoman period when they had no institutions, the Greeks did not even have seminaries. The bishop would travel to a village where the priest had died, and there he would identify an older man who was pious and who knew the Divine Liturgy by heart. He would ordain him for the village, equivalently “simplex” with no added faculties to preach or hear confessions. This work was done by itinerant monks during the holy season of Lent.
Link (here) to the full and extremely informative post by Fr. Brian Van Hove, S.J.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Fr. John P. Markoe, S.J. On Gamaliel And The One True Church

When the Apostles first began publicly to preach the religion of Jesus Christ in Jerusalem, great indignation was stirred up among the Jews that rejected Christ. The Apostles were arrested and brought before the High Priest of the Temple for examination and trial. While the Jewish tribunal was considering putting them to death, one of the council rose up, a Pharisee named Gamaliel, a doctor of Law and much respected by all the people, and commanded the Apostles to be put forth, and then said wisely to their judges:  
"Fellow Israelites, be careful what you are about to do to these men. Some time ago, Theudas appeared, claiming to be someone important, and about four hundred men joined him, but he was killed, and all those who were loyal to him were disbanded and came to nothing. After him came Judas the Galilean at the time of the census. He also drew people after him, but he too perished and all who were loyal to him were scattered. So now I tell you, have nothing to do with these men, and let them go. For if this endeavor or this activity is of human origin, it will destroy itself. But if it comes from God, you will not be able to destroy them; you may even find yourselves fighting against God"
Acts 5: 35-39

Almost nineteen-hundred years have rolled by since these words were spoken. Gamaliel has long been dead and gone, preaching of the Apostles has echoed down the centuries with an ever increasing force and effectiveness. The tiny group of disciples that constitute the Catholic Church in those early days in Jerusalem has so spread the and increased that it now forms a vast organization that covers the entire earth and numbers over 324 million members.  Time after time hostile powers have thrown obstacles in the way of the way of its development. Persecutions almost without number have been hurled against it, with no avail. Christ has remained true to His promise ever to be with the Church, and as it has in the past, so it will be in the future until the end of time. "The gates of hell shall not prevail against it." Gamaliel, the Catholic Church has proved itself the work of God.

From the book entitled, The Triumph of the Church by Fr. John P. Markoe, S.J.

Our Lord Was Close To His Disciples

Spiritual counselling has been practised from the earliest history of the Church down to our own times. It is sometimes referred to as spiritual direction or spiritual accompaniment. It is an ancient and tested practice which has produced fruits of holiness and evangelical readiness. 
The Fathers, the Magisterium, numerous spiritual writers and the norms governing ecclesial life all speak of the need for spiritual direction, especially for those in training or formation, as well as for those in certain ecclesial conditions. There are certain moments in life which call for special discernment and for fraternal accompaniment. This stems from the logic of Christian life. “It is necessary to rediscover the great tradition of personal spiritual guidance which has always brought great and precious fruits to the Church’s life”. Our Lord was close to His disciples. Spiritual direction, under different names, has always existed in the Church. 
Initially, it was to be found in the monasteries of the East and West. From the Middle Ages, it was an essential part of the various schools of spirituality. As can be seen from the writings of St. Teresa of Avila, St. John of the Cross, St. Ignatius Loyola, St. Francis de Sales, St. Alphonsus Mary de Ligouri and from those of Cardinal Pierre de Bérulle, it had a much wider application in Christian life during the 16th and 17th centuries. While spiritual direction was always imparted by monks and priests, other members of the faithful (religious and lay) – Saint Catherine for example – have also given spiritual counsel. Ecclesiastical legislation has drawn on all of this experience and has applied it in the formulation of norms for formation or the priesthood and religious life. There are to be found also well formed lay people – both men and women – who offer this service of counsel along the journey of holiness.
Link (here) to the amazing THE PRIEST, MINISTER OF DIVINE MERCY AN AID FOR CONFESSORS AND SPIRITUAL DIRECTORS issued by the Congregation for the Clergy


Dorothy Day, who died in 1980, was an anarchist, a pacifist, and the co-founder of the Catholic Worker, a movement devoted to helping the poor and the homeless. Described by historian David O’Brien as “the most influential, interesting, and significant figure” in U.S. Catholic history, Day is currently being considered for canonization in the Catholic Church. Before her conversion to Catholicism in 1927, however, Day lived what the late Cardinal O’Connor of the Archdiocese of New York has referred to as "a life akin to that of the pre-converted Augustine of Hippo." That bohemian life included common-law marriage and an abortion. Some may feel that Day’s promiscuity precludes her cause for sainthood. But in his February 2000 letter to the Vatican in support of Day’s canonization, O’Connor contended “that her abortion should not preclude her cause, but intensifies it.” She is a model, he continued, “for women who have had or are considering abortions” because she “regretted” that action “every day of her life.”
Earlier this month, Father James Martin, the Jesuit priest, author, and go-to-guy on Roman Catholicism for Stephen Colbert (Colbert once called him “The Colbert Report chaplain”), reported on “A New Conversation” about Dorothy Day and abortion.
This private conversation with Catholic Worker member Daniel Marshall occurred in 1977 at a farm in Tivoli, New York. According to Marshall:
I seized the opportunity to ask Dorothy to write in the paper about abortion as possibly the central moral issue of our time.  She paused and gently answered, "I don't like to push young people into their sins" . . .
Then Dorothy said, "You know, I had an abortion.  The doctor was fat, dirty and furtive.  He left hastily after it was accomplished, leaving me bleeding.  The daughter of the landlords assisted me and never said a word of it.  He was Emma Goldman's lover; that's why I have never had any use for Emma."
I hung on every word that she said, not only because she was Dorothy, but because, although I had heard a rumor that she had an abortion, I was aware that few people knew of it from her. I understood from Dorothy that she was asking me to comprehend what the consequences would be of a public statement from her on abortion and also that the public consequences might be a distraction from the issue and the cause.  What she thought of abortion was clear as a bell from what she said.
Link (here) to the entire story at CNN