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On April 25, 2023, the Ignatianum University in Krakow hosted a Scientific Symposium entitled "The Crime of Pedophilic Acts: Social, Therapeutic, and Legal Aspects" organized by the Child Protection Center (COD). The event took place on the occasion of the 10th anniversary of COD. The symposium was held under the honorary patronage of Archbishop Wojciech Polak, the Primate of Poland, Monika Hornej-Cieślak, the Ombudsman for Children's Rights, and Professor Tomasz Homa, the Rector of Ignatianum University. The introductory speeches were delivered by: Dr. Krzysztof Biel SJ, Dean of the Faculty of Pedagogy at Ignatianum University Dr. Adam Żak, Director of COD Professor Tomasz Homa, Rector of Ignatianum University Monika Hornej-Cieślak, Ombudsman for Children's Rights, with a lecture on "Child Protection in the Light of the Kamilka Act" The sexual exploitation of minors is a global social problem. Recent reports on the scale of the phenomenon indicate a continuous increase in cases of sexual violence against children and youth, despite increasingly restrictive legal regulations aimed at perpetrators. The aim of the symposium was to reflect on the phenomenon of child sexual exploitation in its three aspects: social, therapeutic, and legal, and to seek new possibilities for preventing these crimes, also at the legal level. The above topics were discussed within three thematic panels.The first panel focused on the social aspect. In the social sphere, attention was drawn to the scale of the phenomenon, risk factors for becoming a victim, and possible aspects of prevention. The speakers included: Dr. Krzysztof Biel, Ignatianum University Dr. Monika Sajkowska, FDDS Mgr Sławomir Nowotny, ISKK The panel was moderated by Dr. Krzysztof Biel SJ. The second panel concentrated on the therapeutic aspect. The discussion revolved around the effects of sexual exploitation of minors and proposals for therapeutic interventions for victims of pedophilic acts. The speakers in the second panel included: Dr. Barbara Smolińska, Dialogue Workshop Professor Bogdan de Barbaro, Fundacja Na Szlaku Mgr Tomasz Franc OP (moderator) The third panel discussed the adequacy and effectiveness of legal regulations in the field of criminal and canon law. During the third panel, speakers examined the latest legal provisions. The speakers included: Professor Paweł Wiliński, Adam Mickiewicz University - Fundamental rights of the victim. Foundation and minimum standard Dr. Jan Dohnalik, Cardinal Stefan Wyszyński University - Canon law on sexual exploitation of minors and the vulnerable - where are we and where are we heading The panel was moderated by Professor Hanna Suchocka, Adam Mickiewicz University.
Father Stanisław Majcher, a Jesuit from the Retreat House in Zakopane, serves as a chaplain at the penitentiary in Nowy Wiśnicz. As part of his ministry, he moderates formational meetings for prisoners. On April 20, another meeting took place, attended by several dozen inmates and a few volunteers from Krakow, Lodz, Rzeszow, Zywiec, Nowy Sacz, Lachowice, and Gdansk. The main topic of the meeting was loneliness and isolation in everyday life. It's worth noting that prisoners do not experience loneliness in the classical sense, as they are surrounded by fellow inmates. However, the question was how to overcome the feeling of isolation that affects the inner self. Father Stanisław Majcher began the meeting by talking about external and internal freedom, introducing the topic. Then, fragments from the Holy Scripture about loneliness were presented to the prisoners to explore the issues at the intersection of spirituality and psychology, distinguishing between loneliness and isolation. The next two presentations were testimonies from volunteers sharing how they cope with isolation at home and in their professional lives. Referring to the scope of isolation in professional work, a volunteer mentioned his experience with Spiritual Exercises, where the silence of the retreat touched his inner self and consciousness. This led to a desire to talk to his coworker about their closed-off attitude. The result of the conversation was a spiritual and life awakening for the coworker, who emerged from that state as a changed person. The key to overcoming isolation is a relationship with God, and subsequently, building oneself on the path towards another person with God. It was also pointed out that Saint Ignatius Loyola wrote in the Spiritual Exercises: "The more the soul is isolated and alone, the more it can approach its Creator and Lord and unite with Him."
A small community of Polish Jesuits from Melbourne, Australia, was noticed at the 29th Catholic Publishers' Fair at the Royal Castle in Warsaw. The Jesuit community of St. Andrew Bobola in Melbourne dared to exhibit the board game "Ignacy Loyola: Knight and Pilgrim" (English: "Ignatius Loyola: Knight and Pilgrim"), Fr. Mariusz Han SJ and Dr. Tomasz R. Han - in the Multimedia category. On Thursday, April 11, 2024, during the official opening of the Fair, the Association of Catholic Publishers announced the results of the annual Phoenix Award competition, awarded in 11 different thematic categories. Over 230 publications competed. The Phoenix Chapter awarded the prestigious award to the board game by Father Mariusz Han SJ and his brother Dr. Tomasz Han, emphasizing that it is: "Inspirational entertainment for the whole family. A successful combination of fun and learning about life. It features a dynamic plot that engages the player completely, while also captivating their attention with high aesthetics and attention to photographic details and visual impressions." The board game about St. Ignatius of Loyola is the result of several years of hard work by both brothers. It was created in collaboration with many Jesuits from Poland and Australia, as well as laypeople. Its creation was inspired by the desire to participate in the promotion of the "Ignatian Year" celebrated in the world in 2021/2022. The game consists of two boards, on which you can play a double game, with St. Ignatius Loyola as the hero. On the first board, players move towards the ultimate goal of life's adventure, heaven. However, the winner is not the one who gets there first, but the one who earns the most points called "AMDG". These are the first letters of the Latin phrase and desire that Ignatius lived by: "Ad Maiorem Dei Gloriam", or "For the Greater Glory of God". As players visit subsequent cities, they learn about the life of St. Ignatius, the Knight and Pilgrim, and experience various adventures with him, earning necessary points. They will also face questions testing their level of religious knowledge and proposals for discussions about the contemporary world. The second board, intended for "connoisseurs of board games", is significantly more challenging. Modeled after the popular Polish game "Miś Wojtek", it leads participants through places where St. Ignatius lived and acted. The winner is the one who collects more complete sets of cards. The game aims to interest young people in "Ignatian spirituality", which helps to be truly free and happy by being prayerful and contemplative in daily courageous action. The board game by the Han brothers, awarded the Phoenix Award in Poland, is an obvious pride of the Australian Province, and with undisguised recognition noticed by the Roman Curia of the Society, it arouses widespread interest among many other provinces in different parts of the world. The 29th Gala and closing ceremony of the Catholic Publishers' Fair took place on Saturday, April 14, 2024, at the Field Cathedral of the Polish Army in Warsaw. Dr. Tomasz Han, representing Father Mariusz Han SJ and the community of Polish Jesuits in Melbourne, participated in the ceremony of awarding the Phoenix Awards and honors. The 29th Catholic Publishers' Fair presented over 100 exhibitors and 15,000 publications this year. Over 20,000 people attended, participating in author meetings, film screenings, discussions, and panels The game is available in Polish and English versions:in Poland: "Ignatius Loyola: Knight and Pilgrim"in Australia: "Ignatius Loyola: Knight and Pilgrim"
On Saturday, February 24, on the second anniversary of the outbreak of the war in Ukraine, an ecumenical service was held in Poznań in the Jesuit church. The prayer was led by Fr. Bishop Jan Glapiak (Catholic Church), and the homily was delivered by Fr. mitrat Ivan Dziuba (Orthodox Church of Ukraine). The Orthodox Ukrainian community meets regularly for prayer in the Jesuit church. Sacred Heart of Jesus and Our Lady of Consolation. The Poznań Jesuit community also has an office of the Jesuit Refugee Service and the Vinea Foundation, which provides psychological assistance to refugees. The Catholic temple has been the center of a war chaplaincy for refugees from Ukraine belonging to the Orthodox Church of Ukraine (CPU) for over a year. In addition to the Orthodox liturgy celebrated in the church, the Jesuits, together with their Polish and Ukrainian collaborators, organize many cultural events in the Jesuit Gallery located next to it.
On October 10, 2023, by resolution of the President of the Republic of Poland Andrzej Duda, Father Prof. Józef Bremer SJ was awarded the Gold Cross of Merit for his achievements in the development of science. Prof. Bremer works at the Department of Logic, Epistemology and Philosophy of Science at the Institute of Philosophy of Ignatianum University in Cracow, Poland. He is also an honorary professor at the National University named after Ivan Franko in Zhytomyr, Ukraine (since 2012) and honorary professor of the Silesian University of Technology in Gliwice, Poland (since 2023). In the years 2014-2022 he was the rector of the Ignatianum Academy in Cracow. For 7 years he was a full-time employee of the Faculty of Philosophy of the Jagiellonian University, where he also held managerial positions (head of the Department of Cognitive Science) and co-founded the field of cognitive science. In the years 2011-2018 he was a member of the Committee of Philosophical Sciences at the Polish Academy of Sciences. The award will be presented on the Day of the Ignatianum University on March 8, 2024.
In July this year, the editorial team of Modlitwa w drodze (MWD) conducted a survey among its listeners. The goal was to get listeners' opinions on the quality of the meditations shared through this popular application. At the same time, information was also collected about who the statistical recipients of this online prayer application are. 2,586 people took part in the survey, which is nearly 10% of approx. 28,000 of the daily users. The average rating is 4.41 on a 5-point scale. Women (4.48) rate the application significantly better than men (4.28). Married people value it the most (4.44). The average rating of people with children is 4.46, and of people without children - 4.29. As the results of the survey show, Modlitwa w drodze greatly helps in the practice of prayer and in spiritual development and understanding of the Gospel (4.66). It helps to a slightly smaller, but still very high extent in the relationship with God and attentiveness to God's actions (4.60) and in the relationship with each other (4.37).  Modlitwa w drodze is rated best by people who listen to it while walking or running (4.45) and those who listen to the prayer at home (4.44). In questions regarding technical matters, the voice of the lecturers (4.58) and the music (4.37) are rated the highest. These opinions do not show any significant differences due to the age and gender of the respondents. A small proportion (20%) of people expect slightly more intellectually engaging content. For the vast majority of people, the content of the meditations is optimally understandable. The vast majority of respondents (78%) consider the duration of the prayer to be optimal. Also, time for reflection is optimal for the vast majority of people. Only 23% of those taking part in the survey thought it was too short. 64.31% of respondents were women. 21 people did not provide information about their gender (less than 1%). The dominant age group were people between 45 and 54 years of age (33%) and between 35 and 44 years of age (29%). The largest number of listeners lives in large cities, over 500,000 inhabitants (26%) and in villages (20%). According to the survey, 66% of MWD listeners are married and 19% are single. 71% of listeners declare having a child or children. 97% of respondents declare themselves Catholic and 3% as Christians other than Catholics. 73% of respondents declare that they listen to us every day, and 21% once or several times a week. 63% of respondents declare that they listen to us at home. 20% then drive a car. Gratitude dominated among the free responses (641 responses). Many respondents shared situations in which MWD is helpful for them (323). 247 people suggested certain solutions regarding the prayers, as well as promotional and fundraising activities. A detailed analysis of the data can be found here