A Jesuit priest, Fr Victor-Luke Odhiambo, was killed by unknown assailants who broke into the Jesuit residence in Cueibet, South Sudan on the night of 14 November 2018. Fr Odhiambo, originally from Kenya, was an educationist with vast experience. He previously headed a Jesuit school in Tanzania. He moved to South Sudan about ten years ago and has been involved in teacher training in Wau and Rumbek. Fr Odhiambo was passionate about the Jesuit mission in South Sudan, and believed that education was the best of helping the young country. On the night of 14 November, Fr Odhiambo was in the living room watching television when the assailants broke into the house and shot him dead. There were four other Jesuit companions in the house who had already retired to bed at the time. When they heard commotion and gun shots ring out in the house, the other companions raised alarm. The assailants fled, but they had already killed Fr Odhiambo. Security personnel responded to the alarm, and secured the residence. Fr Victor-Luke Odhiambo was born on 20 January 1956. He entered the Society of Jesus on 4 July 1978, was ordained to the Priesthood on 22 August 1987, and made final vows on 30 May 1993. 
Fr. General at the Youth Synod. VATICAN – The Catholic Church must find a way to look at secularization as an opportunity to find new ways to proclaim the Gospel, the Jesuit superior general told the Synod of Bishops. While the working document of the synod dedicated to young people views secularization as "a dark phase that is in the process of being overcome," the document offers no approach to "looking to interpret reality and discern God's action in history," said Jesuit Father Arturo Sosa Abascal. "What if we try, instead, to look at secularization as a sign of the times, in the theological sense that the Second Vatican Council gave to this expression? It means looking at secularization, and the secular world that arises from it, as one of the ways the Spirit is speaking to us and guiding us in this time," he told the synod Oct. 11. Father Sosa began his brief talk by looking at the working document's interpretation of secularization, which he said was viewed in a "simplified and negative" light. Secularization, he affirmed, can range from a combative attitude, "a militant atheism," that "wages war against any form of religious faith" to a more common form that interrupts "the social transmission of religion leading to ignorance regarding faith, religious experience and religion itself." However, if the church views secularization as a "sign of the times," it can lead to a more authentic faith that challenges people to make a conscious choice to become Christian rather being "automatic Christians" who only practice their faith because of the society in which they live or their family traditions. "Secular society also frees us from establishing in religion a tribal identity, a national identity or any other identity foreign to the spiritual experience that invites us to recognize each other as humans, brothers and sisters, sons and daughters of the same Father," Father Sosa said. A secularized culture, he added, also can help the church recover the importance of proclaiming the Gospel, which is "a key dimension of the work of the church in these types of societies" and is a fundamental experience of those who give witness to "a personal encounter with Christ." The experience of faith, Father Sosa said, "does not produce subjects of an earthly estate but rather voluntary followers of the universal estate of the Crucified-Risen One from who they have freely chosen to make themselves disciples."
On October 20th, the Catholic Church beatified "the apostle of the city", Father Tiburcio Arnaiz Muñoz SJ.  Presiding over the beatification ceremony at Malaga’s cathedral was Cardinal Angelo Becciu, Prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints. Among the 100+ priests concelebrating there were Pascual Cebollada, General Postulator of the Society of Jesus; Fr Provincial, Antonio España; Fr Fernando Motas, Jesuit Superior of Málaga community; Fr Vicente Luque, Vice Postulator of the cause and Postulator during the diocesan phase and Fr Elías Royón, Episcopal Vicar for Consecrated Life of the Archdiocese of Madrid. In his homily, Cardinal Angelo Becciu highlighted: “Dear brothers and sisters, what is the message that Blessed Tiburcio Arnáiz Muñoz offers to today’s Church and society at large? He represents for all of us, especially for priests and consecrated persons, the example of a man who was not satisfied with what had already been achieved but who, in obedience to the demands of the spirit, intended to surrender himself to God with greater radicalism. This was at the origin of his decision to enter the Society of Jesus after twelve years of diocesan ministry. He responded to God’s love through a growing commitment to his ministry and love for the least, the rejected. How great a need there is, in our times, to open our hearts to the spiritual and material needs of so many of our brothers and sisters who expect from us words of faith, consolation, and hope, as well as gestures of generous solidarity and a warm welcome!” The cause of beatification was promoted by the Association of Missionaries of Rural Doctrines, founded by Fr Arnaiz, whose feast will be celebrated on July 18. He lies buried in the Jesuit church of the Sacred Heart in Malaga. More info 
In the Chapel for Europe in Brussels October was a month where we reflected on sanctity and its political implications. We started this month with the conference on “Becoming a Saint in Politics”, covering the lives of Robert Schuman and Alcide de Gasperi, two of founding fathers of Europe, who are on the way to be declared saints. We finished the month with the evening of reflection on “Bishop Romero of America, Prophet and Martyr” highlighting the heritage of the new proclaimed Saint and his importance for Europe and the Universal Church. The voice of the voiceless For Bishop Romero, the voice of the voiceless poor, is certainly not just a local saint from El Salvador but a great example for the worldwide Church, not only Catholic but Ecumenical and recognized in all of Latin America, Africa, Asia and Europe. He is an archbishop who not only preached the love for the poor, but defended them and gave his life for them. He is a man of “faith and justice”.   During this evening we were led from a short film about Oscar Romero, through emotional testimonies of Salvadorian people, to reflections of Martin Maier sJ and Rodolfo Cardenal sJ on what remembering Bishop Romero should mean today. The Chapel was packed with people and a big part of the audience came from the Spanish speaking Latin American community in Brussels. The tasty “pupusas”, excellent thick corn tortillas, traditional Salvadorian dish offered by the Salvadorian embassy, let people to stay and share long after the conference. What can Bishop Romero mean for us today? He is certainly an “uncomfortable Saint” in a rather comfortable world of the European civil servants. A saint who certainly inspires communion and solidarity but also, in his radicalism, provokes uneasiness, because once met, he doesn’t leave us in peace. He pulls us out of our peaceful life, confronts with our limitations through his lifestyle witnessing to faith and promoting social justice. Let him give a voice at the end (the quote comes from his speech when he was rewarded with an honorary doctorate at the Catholic University of Leuven in 1980): “The political dimension of the faith is nothing other than the church’s response to the demands made upon it by the de facto socio-political world in which it exists. (…) That is not to say that the church should regard itself as a political institution entering into competition with other political institutions (…) I am talking of something more profound, something more in keeping with the gospel. I am talking about an authentic option for the poor, of becoming incarnate in their world, of proclaiming the good news to them, of giving them hope, of encouraging them to engage in a liberating praxis, of defending their cause and of sharing their fate”.
Xavier Network brings Mission Offices and NGO’s together. Right in the heart of Flanders, just outside Ghent, Drongen Abbey was the meeting place for the Xavier Network. The historic monument dating back to 1138 was founded by the Norbertine monks and bought by the Jesuits in 1836 to house the noviciate of the Belgian Province. It is now used as an Ignatian centre for spirituality and conference centre. From 10 to 12 October, it was the turn of the 12 Jesuit Mission Offices and Development NGOs from Europe, Canada and Australia forming the Xavier Network to use this centuries-old jewel for their reflection. After the welcome by Fr. Johan Verschueren SJ, Regional superior of European Low Countries, Fr. Franck Janin SJ, the JCEP President, outlined the major challenges of our network. He highlighted its contribution to the apostolic needs of the mission of the Society of Jesus in the future and its call to work with other networks, both European and global. Fr. Janin underlined that this cooperation should not only include fundraising, but also communication, advocacy, awareness raising and other areas where the network has acquired expertise. We then set about seeking how to maximize our cooperation in different ways: joint emergency interventions, project collaborations, shared activities as part of our advocacy and volunteer programs and a common child protection and safeguarding policy. An essential element of such meetings is the openness and trust with which we share about the situation of our organisations. It is particularly in these informal moments that we learn from and care for each other.
The university centres of the Society of Jesus in Portugal have launched a special programme for students who participate in the European university exchange programme Erasmus. The Erasmus Spiritual Programme is aimed at all those studying outside Portugal for a semester or a year during this academic year and offers a spiritual accompaniment throughout this period. Thanks to an internet platform, students can find a bi-weekly prayer proposal with reflections that help to see the Erasmus experience in a different light and to live this academic time with quality. Those who wish can go for distance spiritual accompaniment, whereby they are invited to get in touch with an assigned Jesuit via Skype. Young people enrolling in the programme will also benefit from an Erasmus notebook with information on Ignatian places, nearby Jesuits organizations as well as mass celebrations and times in their Erasmus city/country. For those interested, there is even the possibility of getting in touch with other Portuguese students in the city, so that they can meet or eventually form a group following the reflections offered by this project.

UPCOMING EVENTS

20-22
Tue - Thu
Nov 2018
PARIS
France
Consult JCEP Consult of the President of the Jesuits Conference of European Provincials READ MORE
28-1
Wed - Sat
Nov - Dec 2018
DRONGEN
Belgium
JECSE Delegates Mzeting of the JECSE Delegates READ MORE
1
Sat
Dec 2018
KAUNAS
Lithuania
Ordination S. Eugenijus Puzynia (LIT) will be ordained to the priesthood by archbishop Lionginas Virbalas SJ at 12 am at the Jesuit church. READ MORE
8
Sat
Dec 2018
BRUSSELS
Belgium - Sevilla
Final vows Fr. Alban Massie (EOF) will take final vows at 12 am in the Church of  the S. Sacrament, La Viale-Europe. Fr José María Valverde (ESP), will take Final Vows in the church of Portaceli College (Avda. Eduardo Dato 20b), at 8,30 pm. READ MORE