Jesuits in Europe

WORLD
Dear Companions, dear friends of the Society of Jesus It is with great joy that we share with you Father General Arturo Sosa's publication of the four UNIVERSAL APOSTOLIC PREFERENCES that will guide the life and mission of Reconciliation and Justice (36 GC) of the Society of Jesus for the next 10 years.Pope Francis himself entrusted us with these preferences. Let us welcome them with an open and generous heart and, knowing the will of God, let us ask Him for the grace, in Saint Ignatius' words, "to fulfill it entirely".Franck Janin SJPresident of the Jesuit Conference of European Provincials   The fruit of a universal discernment of two years After General Congregation 36 in 2016, a discernment process has been set up in all the Jesuit Conferences, at all levels of the Society of Jesus.In January 2019 Fr. General Arturo Sosa met with his enlarged council to finalize the discernment before bringing the result to Pope Francis, who accepted them after having prayed with them.On February 19th at noon Fr. General has released the fruit of this universal discernment.   These are the 4 preferences that will be in effect for 10 years: 1. PROMOTING DISCERNMENT AND THE SPIRITUAL EXERCISESHelping people find Jesus Christ and follow Him2. WALKING WITH THE EXCLUDEDWalk alongside the poor, the vulnerable, the excluded and those whom society considers worthless , in a mission of reconciliation and justice3. CARING FOR OUR COMMON HOMEWork, with Gospel depth, for the protection and renewal of God’s Creation4. JOURNEYING WITH YOUTHAccompany young people in the creation of a hope - filled future A special website has been dedicated to those new UNIVERSAL APOSTOLIC PREFERENCES Click here for the English versionHaga clic aquí para la versión en españolClickez ici pour la version en françaisClicca qui per la versione italiana
WORLD
On the 12 of January 2019 a group of 23 Spanish pilgrims arrived in El Salvador to take part in the first stage of what would be a nine-day experience that would connect them with other youth from around the world.  Even though these young people came from different faith groups, different universities, and different cities from around Spain, they had been brought together by their common Ignatian spirituality and the MAG+S Pastoral Network. As they embarked on this adventure, they shared a common feeling that the motto of this MAG+S 2019, "Your word transforms", was a also a promise. Yet, after a (relatively) short flight across the Atlantic, it was already time to break apart their new community. Mixing together with Colombian, Salvadoran, Korean, and Uruguayan pilgrims, the Spanish group spread out across El Salvador in search of an encounter with this country's beautiful culture and unique spirituality. Mª Victoria Paredes and Rocío Bellido remember “We divided and mixed (with other groups) to get to know the Salvadoran reality and history. When we say that we “got to know” (this Salvadoran reality), we really mean that we were ´welcomed` into the Salvadoran and the MAGIS communities. Through their testimonies, their lives, the struggles they shared and their desire to keep the spirit of San Óscar Romero alive... we could truly feel God throughout the experience and in our hearts”. Friends in the Lord This “MAGIS” spirit of welcome, openness, and faith continued when the Spanish pilgrims reunited in Panama.  They had an opportunity to introduce each other to the new “friends in the Lord” that they had made in El Salvador while also being welcomed, once again, into the homes of their host families around the city.  Over the next few days almost 1,000 Ignatian pilgrims from all over the world, including several delegations from Europe, shared in cultural and spiritual activities as well as continuing to explore the Ignatian spirituality that connected them as MAGIS youth.  Fr. General In his homily on the last day of MAGIS 2019, Father General Arturo Sosa S.J. thanked the pilgrims for opening themselves to the movements of this MAGIS spirit, that had invited them to leave their homes and travel to Panama, saying that openness “makes us creators and transformers because we participate in the emergence of something new.”  In fact, across Europe, the spirit of MAGIS is continuing to inspire and reverberate and has inspired something new. In Spain, for instance, "MAG+S" has become a proposal for the faith life of our young people, a way of living their faith, inspired by Ignatian spirituality, in their daily life. The MAG+S Pastoral program includes one-time experiences and weekly faith groups and continues to invite our young people to be, as Pope Francis invited them on World Youth Day, “The 'influencers' Of God ' in a world.” For Lucia Gómez-Lavín, this MAG+S program offered a way to stay connected to the experience she had in Central America and continue to explore her faith. She explains “I had spent the past year and a half studying outside of Spain and that meant that I become disconnected from the community I had in Madrid… one of the fruits that I am collecting from MAGIS and World Youth Day is the chance to reconnect with this community, I want to  get involved again.” When Lucia returned to Madrid, she found that community of Ignatian young people was waiting to welcome her, just as she was welcomed in El Salvador and Panama. The same spirit that moved her during MAGIS 2019 and WYD was moving in countless classmates back in Spain. John Byrd and Almudena Moral Alcaraz, MAG+S Pastoral Office, Madrid, Spain
WORLD
On the eve of the important meeting convened by Pope Francis at the Vatican on the protection of minors, the Union of Superiors General (USG), of which Fr. Arturo Sosa is President, and the International Union of Superiors General (UISG-Women Religious) issued the attached statement. Both associations fully support the Pope's initiative. Read the press release.
WORLD
The ceremony for the opening of the cause for the beatification and canonization of Pedro Arrupe SJ, Father General of the Society of Jesus from 1965 to 1983, took place at the Basilica of St John Lateran, in Rome on  February 5th, the 28th anniversary of Fr Arrupe’s death. Pope Francis probably carries the laurels as the best-known, most beloved and yet controversial Jesuit of the last hundred years, but Fr Arrupe would be a close second.  Yet despite his huge impact on the Church, Fr Arrupe is little known outside the Society of Jesus.  This will change as the cause for canonisation gets underway. Pascual Cebollada SJ, postulator of the cause, invited all Jesuit communities worldwide to celebrate the Eucharist on the same day.  People around the world were invited to participate in the opening session which was live-streamed.  In this way, “the whole Society of Jesus will be united in prayer on the occasion of the official opening of the process of his cause of beatification.” Fr Cebollada said, “For many of us, from different generations, Fr Arrupe is an example of being rooted in Christ, a man of the Church, a man who follows the calling of the Holy Spirit and, without fear, made the decisions he needed to make because he was rooted in God.” The process for canonization which has now been formally opened will involve compiling Fr Arrupe’s works, and hearing testimony from 120 people who remember him.  The report compiled will demonstrate that Fr Arrupe enjoys “the fame of sanctity,” i.e. that he is venerated as a holy person, and that there is at least one miracle attributed to his intercession.  It will then be submitted to the Congregation for the Causes of the Saints for consideration.   The final arbiter is the Pope himself. The legacy of Fr Arrupe Fr Arrupe was born in Spain in 1907 and joined the Society in 1927, having abandoned medical studies after a profound conversion experience at Lourdes.  After ordination he went to Japan as a missionary and was Novice Master at the Jesuit novitiate in Hiroshima in 1945 when the atomic bomb destroyed the city. Fr Arrupe converted the novitiate into a makeshift hospital to care for survivors. His life and world view were profoundly affected by the experience. He was appointed Provincial of the Japanese Province in 1958.  Then in 1965, in the immediate aftermath of the  Second Vatican Council, the 31st General Congregation elected him Superior General. As Fr Cebollada commented recently to Crux,“When he was elected General he just said, ‘Okay, in the time of Ignatius it was [the Council of] Trent, now it’s Vatican II, so let’s go with Vatican II. This is my aim.. the mission I’ve received from the Church,’” Under his leadership at the 32nd General Congregation of 1974 the Jesuits whole-heartedly embraced the spirit of Vatican II, redefining their mission as “the service of faith, of which the promotion of justice is an absolute requirement’. This led to a new description of a Jesuit: ‘What is it to be a companion of Jesus today? It is to engage, under the standard of the Cross, in the crucial struggle of our time: the struggle for faith and that struggle for justice which it includes’.  Arrupe’s renewal of the Jesuits influenced many other religious orders and had a huge impact on the wider Church. For five three-year periods, he was elected Chairman of the Religious Congregations in Rome.   During the 1970s Jesuits became the intellectual and spiritual heroes of Catholicism’s liberal wing, but at the same time attracted criticism. Arrupe’s final, and may be his greatest, initiative was to establish the Jesuit Refugee Service as a direct response to the crisis of the Vietnamese boat people in 1980.  He wrote, “The help needed is not only material: in a special way the Society of Jesus is being called to render a service that is human, pedagogical and spiritual.” JRS offices were established in the UK the following year and now exist all over the world. The need for their vital work accompanying those seeking safety and asylum has not diminished in the intervening decades. In 1981, Arrupe suffered a debilitating stroke and was forced to resign. Pope John Paul II appointed the Italian Jesuit Paolo Dezza, who had been his teacher, as interim leader, rather than Arrupe’s own choice. Many saw this as unwarranted papal interference and an affront to Arrupe, which caused tension between the Vatican and the order. Pope Francis, the first Jesuit pope, was a great admirer of Fr Arrupe, and has been to pray at his tomb in the church of the Gesù in Rome.

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Finding God

SPAIN
"Accompanying the beginnings of a path of love" was the theme of the Family Ministry meeting of the Jesuits in Spain which was held in Barcelona during the second weekend of February. More than 60 people from nearly 20 different towns participated and shared their experiences about family ministry in different places of the Province. The first challenge is welcoming couples into our post-Christian society. People are often distrustful and even hostile to the Church, especially in the light of the recent scandals of sexual abuse. Cardinal Juan José Omella, Archbishop of Barcelona, participated in the meeting. He began his intervention by pointing out the relationship between Ignatian spirituality and family life, by helping us to find God in daily life. In his talk he stressed the importance of transmitting faith in the family through our testimony, without demanding results nor losing hope. There was also a session dedicated to "good practices" in which we learned about experiences with cases of couple break-ups, pastoral care with LGBT Christians, or new ways of adapting Ignatian spirituality to the family.
POLAND
Charismatic Forum in Łódź.  "The Almighty has done great things to me! - was the slogan of the Charismatic Forum, which took place on 9-10 February in the Łódź Sports Hall. The organizer of the forum was the Jesuit pastoral ministry "Strong in spirit". The guest of the formation and evangelization meeting was Mary Healy, a world-famous biblicalist, an international speaker and a doctor of Catholic theology. For many years she has been associated with the Catholic Charismatic Renewal as Chairman of the Doctrinal Commission within the International Catholic Charismatic Renewal Service The participants of the Forum listened to four conferences entitled: "Wait for the promise of the Father", "The Charism of the Holy Spirit", "My transformation is possible" and "Jesus heals today". They also took part in an evening of praise and adoration of the Blessed Sacrament combined with a prayer for healing. On the first and the second day, the people gathered in the Sports Hall participated in the Holy Mass. On the first evening Mass was presided by Archbishop Grzegorz Rys. The Forum was attended by over one and a half thousand members of charismatic groups who came to Lodz from all over Poland and even from abroad. - Remigiusz Recław SJ is the responsible for the "Strong in Spirit" community at the Jesuit parish in Łódź. This type of formation and evangelization meetings are being held in Łódź twice a year for several years now: in autumn and in spring.
UNITED KINGDOM
The annual gathering of Jesuit pastoral workers took place this year at the Bar Convent in York on 15th and 16th February. It was the largest attendance yet, with over 40 parish priests, chairs of parish councils, plus a good number of parish administrators and pastoral associates spending twenty four hours together considering how lay people and Jesuits could work more closely together.The British Jesuit provincial, Fr Damian Howard was in attendance.  He had recently circulated a letter to all Jesuit parishes and ministries in the UK encouraging deeper co-operation in all of our works, reflecting a concern of the whole Society of Jesus.  He said: “Father General makes a distinction between the apostolic body which fulfils the mission (and to which belong Jesuits and their many partners in mission), and the religious body (which consists of the consecrated men). The model may not be perfect, but it does express both that lay people truly belong to the Jesuit missionary enterprise and that Jesuits have a particular role in its service. “If we embrace this vision wholeheartedly, I think it will strengthen our shared mission, clarify and deepen its Jesuit identity... To move forward, we need to establish a consistent language for speaking of these two bodies and of the relationship between them. We need, too, to ask how we communicate within and between them to provide formation and information about the mission.  I hope you will find as exciting as I do the vision of a mission-oriented Province with genuine partnership between the many and diverse members of its apostolic body and a clear Jesuit identity.” This provided the focus of the agenda with interesting debate about collaboration and communication within the parish context.  Needless to say, there was also time to exchange information and success stories from our diverse pastoral ministries, pray together and enjoy a fish and chip supper in the nearby Longboat Restaurant. Pastoral Co-ordinator Br Ken Vance SJ, commented “It was an enjoyable, informative and uplifting experience and participants departed on a sunny spring afternoon both renewed in their mission and convinced that the way forward is greater co-operation in all our pastoral works.” The Jesuits serve ten parishes: The Church of the Immaculate Conception, Farm St, central London St Ignatius, Stamford Hill, N London St Anselm’s, Southall, W London Polish mission chapel, Willesden, N London Corpus Christi, Boscombe, Bournemouth St Wilfrid’s, Preston St Francis Xavier, Liverpool St Peter’s, Stonyhurst St Aloysius, Glasgow Sacred Heart, Edinburgh
POLAND
On January 27, 2019, the Jesuit parish in Warsaw celebrated its 70th anniversary. The solemn Holy Mass was celebrated by Cardinal Kazimierz Nycz.  After the Holy Mass a common agape took place. For the first 50 years the faithful met in the Liturgy in the chapel and in 2000 they moved to a church built in the former Lubomirski Garden. Apart from Jesuits, there are also  Felician Sisters and lay people working at the parish. In addition to strengthening the homily, the sense of unity at the Eucharistic Table and creating a sublime atmosphere of music, the icon of St. Stephen was donated by the artists gathered around the Jesuit initiative "The Way of the Icon".

Promoting Justice

ITALY
In a time when the gates of Europe seem closed to people in need of protection, JRS Italy is opening a new reception and integration centre for asylum seekers and refugees. The idea of opening a new centre was inspired by Pope Francis’ appeal to open the houses of religious congregations to host refugees on the occasion of his visit to JRS Italy in 2013. The new centre bears the name of Matteo Ricci, a Jesuit who dedicated his life to putting himself in other people’s shoes and looking for the path of dialogue and integration in China. President of the Republic and General Superior The Center was inaugurated 4 February, in the presence of the President of the Italian Republic and the Superior General of the Society of Jesus, Arturo Sosa. The event brought together refugees, volunteers, staff and friends of Centro Astalli as well as institutional representatives of the Church. “I believe that opening a reception and integration centre is a strong sign, from a symbolic and concrete point of view,” said Father Camillo Ripamonti, Director of JRS Italy. He also stressed that our current society has an attitude of closure towards migrants, cautioning that such an attitude “takes hold of us,” making us “dry” and “less human” if we adopt it. The inauguration of the Matteo Ricci Centre is a sign of hope. Centro Astalli continues to open a door to refugees and migrants who are experiencing difficulties in this phase of radical legislative transformation. In the Centre, they can find a home and build new relationships that arise from the encounter. The Superior General Arturo Sosa reminded attendees in his speech that one of the key words of JRS’ mission is “to accompany” migrants and refugees. “It recalls the deep respect that Matteo Ricci had for each person as a companion on the journey”, said Sosa. The Matteo Ricci Centre aims to focus especially on young people by accompanying them as they ask themselves about their own professional and training needs and allowing them to cultivate dreams for the future. “This is the only feasible way forward for integration. We are convinced that in doing so we open a door of hope also for our city, for our country, because creative and educational development within these walls will help to build a supportive community beyond them,” Father Ripamonti concluded. Picture: Mohammed, a refugee from Egypt, gives a present to the President of the Italian Republic for the inauguration of the new Matteo Ricci centre (Photo: Centro Astalli).
UNITED KINGDOM
The Jesuits at Mount Street today hosted an important conference exploring how orders and institutions within the Catholic Church can promote clean energy for a zero-carbon future. Lorna Gold with Fr Damian Howard and Paul Chitnis Key speaker Lorna Gold, Coordinator of the Laudato Si' Project at Trocaire and Vice Chair of the Global Catholic Climate Movement, commented “the key message of today is the urgency of the crisis and the important role the Church and the orders can play through the use of their resources, and deciding when to remove their investments from fossil fuels and divert to renewables.” Adoption by Christian communities The earliest adopters of this kind of action among the Christian community were the Quakers who fully divested from fossil fuels in 2013.  Much of the Anglican Church followed suit in 2016. In Ireland the Catholic Bishops’ Conference divested its fossil fuel investments in August 2018.  Sixty orders in Ireland and all 26 Irish dioceses are now on a path to follow suit, which represents hundreds of millions of Euro of combined investment.  So far the Catholic Church in England Wales has not taken any action, but with today’s conference this is set to change with a potentially significant impact: Catholic orders’ combined UK investments are estimated at over £2 billion. “Today’s event is critical for getting this message across to the Catholic world in the UK,” said Lorna Gold.  “People have two concerns, that they will lose money and that they might be able to achieve more as “active shareholders”, trying to minimise the damage of fossil fuels through influence.  I’d say we have had 30 years to do that and it hasn’t made a difference.  A more radical approach is needed.  Now is the time to divest because carbon free solutions are now viable - with the rise of effective solar and wind power technologies. As the experience of the Irish Catholic Church has shown, their major fund is carbon negative with no detriment to their income.” Operation Noah Fr. Stephen Power and James Buchanan Conference organiser James Buchanan of Operation Noah, a Christian charity working with the Church to inspire action on climate change, said, “it is great to see so many religious here with 65 people representing 20 orders who seem keen to respond to Pope Francis’ call to take action on climate change.  It is positive to see orders considering rethinking their investment in fossil fuel and divestment as a way of accelerating transition to a carbon free future.” Mount Street The conference was welcomed to Mount Street by the Jesuit Provincial Fr Damian Howard SJ and attended by Delegate for Ministry to Young People, Fr James Conway SJ, the province Treasurer Br Stephen Power SJ and Paul Chitnis, Director of Jesuit Missions. Fr Michael Holman SJ chaired a discussion panel.  People brought food to share at lunch time, in order to build a sense of community endeavour, and the event finished with a shared Eucharist celebrated by Fr Dominic Robinson SJ, parish priest at Farm St Church. Stephen Power said  “While the conference’s main topic was fossil fuel divestment, it included an interesting presentation of topics around how to support  a just transition from where we are now to a low carbon future. Under the Jesuits’ current ethical investment policy we do not invest in any company with more than 10% involvement in thermal coal or oil from tar sand. Our ethical investment committee regularly reviews this position and I would expect movement towards divestment unless progress towards sustainable business models are adopted by fossil fuel companies in the near future.”
WORLD
Last week the worldwide meeting of bishops on abuse and child protection has been convened by the Pope in Rome. Father Hans Zollner SJ is the director of the Child Protection Centre at the Pontifical University of Gregorian and helped to prepare the meeting for the bishops. This interview has been made before the bishops meeting. What can the World Church expect from the meeting of the Presidents of the Bishops' Conferences in February? Will there be concrete results? Success will certainly also be achieved if the participants bring the issues of responsibility, accountability and transparency to the local Churches and make them effective. It is also important for the participants to assume their leadership responsibility in relation to this, to gain a greater degree of clarity regarding necessary instruments and to use these instruments. Obstacles with regard to the appropriate handling of abuse must be clearly identified, named and removed according to as fixed a timetable as possible. Participants should be encouraged to come home and actively face the realities. You travel a lot around the world: Aren't the situations of the local churches all over the world far too different to be able to regulate anything centrally from Rome at all? The universal Church must clearly identify and strengthen local responsibilities and adapt them to the respective needs of different cultures. We must face the difficulties of intercultural communication and cooperation. Every cross-national organisation is confronted with this. For us as a church, however, it is not exclusively a practical question that because it is more effective and efficient, one should somehow understand one another. For us the self-understanding, the own being must be in the foreground. Fr. Hans Zollner and Fr. Federico Lombardi with Pope Francis Is there actually sexual violence against children and young people in every culture, or is Western culture, as some say, particularly susceptible? I cannot say whether there is sexual violence against minors in any of the thousands of cultures around the world. But what is certain is that it occurs in all countries and on all continents, in all religions and in all social systems, and has done so since time immemorial. Sexual violence has always been a terrible reality. Father General will also be present at the meeting of the Presidents of the Bishops' Conferences in February - what role do the Orders play at all in the subject of abuse, if one looks at the whole Church? The large international religious communities like the Jesuits or the Salesians are altogether better positioned than individual dioceses. This is due to the fact that in the orders operating worldwide the assessment of the urgency and the experience of members from countries in which the abuse has played a role in the public discussion for decades (e.g. USA or Australia) is great. In Africa, Asia and parts of Latin America the Orders are also very important bearers and pioneers in the school system and thus also in prevention work. With regard to our own Order, for which the coming to terms with sexual abuse has been a sad reality since 2010 - have we Jesuits learned more in the almost 10 years since then and where is there still a need for action for us? We can never rest, we have to stay on the ball here as well. Otherwise one easily succumbs to the temptation of "we have already done our duty". If the prevention of abuse is to be a concern of the Order and of our Province, all members must contribute a part to it. For this we need training and discussion forums in the communities and beyond. In formation we as Jesuits are in the process of defining new standards. For us in Germany the MHG study has formulated many things very clearly. Do the findings of the MHG study play a role in the conference? We only have studies from five to seven countries that meet scientific standards. It turns out that on average 4-6% of the world priests have been accused of abuse in the last seventy years. Furthermore, it can be seen that a sustainable implementation of prevention measures leads to a strong decrease of reported cases of abuse. Approaching victims, talking about abuse, investing in prevention results in significantly less abuse. A comparison of the perpetrator groups of the priests with those of the family fathers is also revealing. Priests do their first deed relatively late. Apparently there is something in their professional life that has a catalytic effect. One can reasonably draw the conclusion that the moral integrity lasted some time and then collapsed due to excessive demands, loneliness, disillusionment or overestimation of one's self. The issue of abuse of power was a central theme of the MHG study. Since then there has been controversy over the evaluation of homosexuality, celibacy and separation of powers in the church. Will the bishops also speak about these issues? The real problem with sexual abuse, in my opinion, is not sexual orientation, but the abuse of power. How I deal with my sexuality also says something about my person and their relationship to power: my needs, dynamics and attitudes. I find the debate far too one-dimensional if it is limited to sexual orientation. All studies conducted by scientists say that celibacy does not lead to abuse. But it is a very important point to examine the suitability of seminarians and religious candidates for the celibate form of life carefully, to pay attention to it in their formation and above all to carry out suitable accompaniment after consecration or profession.   AUTHOR: Hans Zollner SJ - born in 1966 in Regensburg, Germany The Jesuit Father Hans Zollner SJ is a theologian, psychology professor and psychotherapist. He heads the Roman "Centre for Child Protection" (CCP) www.childprotection.unigre.it. Zollner comes from Regensburg and is Vice Rector of the Pontifical University Gregoriana and a member of the Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors established in 2014.
WORLD
On the eve of the important meeting convened by Pope Francis at the Vatican on the protection of minors, the Union of Superiors General (USG), of which Fr. Arturo Sosa is President, and the International Union of Superiors General (UISG-Women Religious) issued the attached statement. Both associations fully support the Pope's initiative. Read the press release.

Youth & Media

EUROPE & NEAR EAST
Experiences in Brussels, Palermo, Genoa, Torino, Milano and Manchester.   Brussels - Drongen Come and see! The European Youth Retreat 2019 attracted eleven participants who wanted to discover their relationship with Jesus. From February 8th on, the young Europeans went to Drongen Abbey close to Gent to spend the weekend without distraction, just focussing on their faith. The participants were guided through each exercise by a team of former participants, that was trained in leading each spiritual exercise by Wojciech Werner SJ during the previous three Sundays. The retreat consisted of three steps: me—you—we. At the beginning, the participants were encouraged to discover not just themselves but also God’s role in their live. Times filled with creative reflections on each one’s path of life gave the opportunity to discover God’s footprints in their biography. The next phase emphasised the relation to others. This might also include one’s own vulnerability but also times, where the participant did not behave in a supporting or healing manner towards others. Failure and sins were brought into mind to finally let go of them. During a mass the participants faced all their failures and sins by writing them down on a paper that was enveloped afterwards. To show, that Jesus loves each one of us despite our sins and failures, these envelopes were handed over to the flames of a fire lit in the garden. This impressive ritual was for many participants the highlight of the retreat. They experienced, that God loves them and that their failures in daily life and in relationships do not count for God nor reduces his love to each one of us. Many participants were visibly moved by this and perhaps experienced the relieving power of reconciliation the first time in their lives. I assume, for many, this experience opened their hearts for God’s unconditional love. These exercises seem demanding, and indeed, they were. So funny elements like warming up games, get togethers and dancing sessions created an easy atmosphere and helped to make a group out of the participants. Besides team-building effects, the purpose of these games was  something more important: the young Europeans could experience, that joy in a community is a most fundamental part of faith and that God wants us to be happy in an environment, where the faithful can rely on each other. In summary, the European Youth Retreat were a great success. The participants discovered God and his unconditional love in their paths of life and the group leaders grew quite a lot on fulfilling their role towards the participants. God wants to show himself to us and God wants us to grow towards him. Both has happened in these blessed days at Drongen Abbey. Christian Lischka, nSJ (GER)   Palermo – Genoa – Torino – Milano From January 30th to February 2nd, 16 final year students from the Istituto Gonzaga of Palermo experienced the Ignatian spiritual exercises at the Chemin Neuf Community of Villa La Nuza Retreat House. They were accompanied by Fr. Salvo Collura SJ, Fr. Alessandro Viano SJ and Andrea Bonavita SJ. Simultaneously, in Genoa, another 14 high school students from the Istituto Sociale di Torino and the Leone XIII of Milan, accompanied by Fr. Nicola Bordogna SJ, Antonello Famà and Leonardo Angius SJ, went through the same enriching experience. This offer is being made to mature students within the Jesuit Education network at a particular moment in their lives after having been gradually prepared spiritually for this experience. This experience of the Spiritual Exercises is made just a few months away from their state exams, at the termination of high school when they are preparing to make important choices for their future, as they are setting the foundations for their career and their life as adults. More information Jesuits EUM    Manchester Students at the Manchester Universities’ Catholic Chaplaincytook advantage of the offer of some quiet time for prayer and rest on a recent weekend retreat at the Prayer Centre of the Poor Servants of the Mother of God at Freshfield, near Formby. Nine students took part, most of whom are part of the music group which enhances the liturgy at the 7pm Mass at Holy Name Church.  The group was accompanied by chaplaincy team members Sr Cecilia FCJ, Br Geoff te Braake SJ and Senior Chaplain Fr Peter Scally SJ.  A highlight of the weekend was the opportunity to sing at Sunday morning Mass for the residents of the care home run by the sister. Jesuits in Britain  
BELGIUM
Session of school principals in French-speaking Western Europe (EOF). Under the aegis of the Province of EOF, a seminar brought together, in Louvain-la-Neuve (Belgium), from 16 to 19 January 2019, about fifty heads of schools of the Belgian and French Jesuit networks. The theme of the session was "Responsible, empowered, empowering", in line with the theme proposed by the General Secretariat of Catholic Education: "Responsibility in Sharing". This is the sixth meeting of heads of schools since 2004. The objective was to get school principals to review the organization of their school in terms of the empowering of the different actors in the school: members of a management team, staff members or students. The guiding principle was that these school principals become actors in the session, that they share their experience after having heard various contributions to feed their reflection on the development of managerial and educational strategies. Trying to influence and transform our institutions by adopting a more participatory and empowering management of the various actors in the school could also lead to the question of how to work towards management excellence, declined under the 4 C's: Conscience, Competence, Compassion and Commitment. The intervention of Father Provincial, Fr. François Boëdec SJ, was particularly noticed and appreciated. We can call it as a founding speech. Taking up Father General Arturo Sosa SJ's invitation, launched in Rio in 2017, to work towards reconciliation between humans, with creation and with God, Father Provincial made particularly enlightening remarks for the educational project of all our schools. "The challenge is to train young people so that they can be real agents of change in our society, so that they are not prisoners of a social environment, but capable of seeing further, of moving our societies towards more justice, of taking up the challenges of the fight against poverty, against unemployment, against the destruction of the planet, against a certain form of financial management that destroys society. » "The announcement of faith is not optional. We are not afraid to say what is at the heart of the establishment project, and from which source we want to drink. This implies a great respect for the itineraries of each person, of other religions and spiritualities too, a concern to enable young people to discover the importance of interiority, and not to remain on the surface of their lives, but it also means having clear proposals not only for religious culture, but also for the presentation and accompaniment of the Christian faith, in its most central aspect, that is, the personal encounter with Christ, which can give meaning to a life, open horizons of freedom and fill an existence. A living, simple, joyful faith, which favours the inner structure more than the armor, in a Church that breathes and is not afraid of the world, in the image of Pope Francis. » Variety and diversity The varied content of the interventions and the diversity of the personalities who testified to their personal and professional experience largely opened up perceptions and representations. The participants were nourished, challenged, sometimes disturbed by an intellectual, musical and human adventure. Guy Perier, "conductor" of the meeting, and Michel Scheuer SJ, former Rector of the University of Namur, convinced us of the need to surround ourselves well in order to be able to exercise our responsibilities effectively but also to leave the "framework" to renew the sense of mission and the project of a shared work. At the end of this seminar, no solution was given but beautiful encounters augur well for a fruitful collaboration and a simple invitation to let oneself be carried away by what has been experienced during the training session, to translate it into actions, where and when the need will arise. The invitation will allow each participant to deploy his or her talents and to orchestrate, with others, within his or her institution, the best responsible education service for the young people entrusted to him or her. Arlette Dister-Jacquemotte (Delegate of the Provincial for schools in French-speaking Belgium)
FRANCE
Every year, the Magis network offers Inigolib, a spiritual and festive gathering, to young people who have participated in one of its activities as well as to other young people who wish to get to know the spirituality of Saint Ignatius. Inigolib is animated by young people and companions, lay, religious and Jesuits alike. This year's edition took place at the end of January during the WYD in Panama. 100 young people met in Paris and 30 in Marseille. In both places, the same pedagogy was adopted: highlights with the local diocese (night hike, pilgrimage, international mass, etc.); keynote Marian speeches by Bruno Régent sj in Paris and Mgr Aveline, auxiliary bishop of Marseille; moments of prayer and singing; salsa dancing (yes, we did!); various testimonies and workshops with a very social dimension in Marseille. Manuel GRANDIN sj (Paris-Assas)   Testimonials from participants: "I came out of the Inigolib weekend particularly marked by the presentation given about Mary, an inspiration for our discernments. Being the great undecided person I am, mulling things over and over again, I found Mary's attitude to be very liberating. It is not a question of weighing the pros and cons, of falling into the trap of a career plan, of saying yes once you have been convinced by the program, but of trusting, believing before seeing, and constantly saying yes to what is before you. Father Bruno Régent summed it up well as: "joy in embracing reality". Mary helps us by her humble attitude. Above all, they are small questions that require a simple yet daily yes to renew our way of being a son/ daughter of God". Marie, Inigolib' Paris "I was very happy and I thank you for the opportunity to participate in this weekend in Marseille. A time of catechesis allowed us to enter directly into the theme of this year's WYD: With Mary, let us dare to say YES. For me, it was one of the highlights of the weekend. I particularly remember the fact that to commit, to say yes, is to give up. I spend my time giving up things although I'm not always aware of it. This is a point on which I can rely when making a choice. What I also found remarkable was the large number of young people involved, in one way or another, for a single cause. It is a true hope for my future and for our society. A second strong moment was the 'solidarity soup' experiment. Of course, the distribution remains the highlight, but I especially remember the time it took to prepare the soup. Everyone participated in their own way, which made for a united group. We shared this time with people who spoke, others less, but each time it was a different and unique exchange". Aurora, Inigolib' Marseille "I welcome the joy and the simplicity of these days. Thank you to the organizers of Inigolib, and thank you for this opportunity to in tune with the WYD in Panama!" Marc, Inigolib' Paris
SPAIN
The Global Citizenship Commission of EDUCSI (the network of Jesuit educational centers in Spain) was set up in Madrid on February 7th. The meeting was a starting point for deepening and responding to the sixth challenge that Fr. General proposed to the Jesuit schools in his speech to the delegates at JESEDU-Rio 2017: “Although the concept of the “global citizen” is still under construction, our education should be a creative actor in this. Our presence in so many places and cultures around the world allows us to create and offer educational proposals for an intercultural view of the world, in which all human beings and their peoples possess a “global citizenship”, where rights and duties are connected. This is beyond culture itself, nationalism or political or cultural fanaticism, which prevent the recognition of our radical brotherhood” Being a constitutive meeting, it was very focused on planning the work to do. The Agenda 2030 of Sustainable Development Objectives and the Apostolic Preferences of the Society of Jesus, as well as the speeches of the last Jesuit Generals and other documents were marked as inspiration for the processes of the commission. Antoni Parellada, president of the commission affirmed that "it is global citizenship that inspires the actions of our centers in the social sphere". Likewise, Parellada affirms that the Commission "wishes to be in full harmony with all the work that both JECSE and the task force of the Secretariat of Education have begun to carry out in order to promote and develop a transformative education for Global Citizenship in the Jesuit schools ".

In-depth Reflection

RUSSIA
On January 30 an event commemorating Fr. Robert Taft SJ (January 9, 1932 – November 2, 2018) and his contribution to the liturgical science of the Eastern rites took place in Moscow. It was co-organized by St Thomas Institute, run by the Jesuits, and St Filaret Orthodox Institute, where Fr Taft served as one of the trustees. Edward Farrugia SJ from Pontifical Oriental Institute – where Fr. Taft was a professor from 1975 till 2011 - was a special guest. He told the audience about Fr Taft’s life and the main achievements in his scholarly work. Other papers discussed various contributions of the great Jesuit scholar to the research in the field of liturgy, in particular his participation in the recognition by the Catholic Church of the Syriac Addai and Mari anaphora as an authentic Eucharistic prayer. A few of his works are now available in Russian and more are currently in the process of being translated. The whole of Fr Taft’s legacy is yet to be fully appropriated by the Eastern Churches and by all those who admire the beauty and depth of the Eastern liturgies.
AUSTRIA
The Kircher Network (the network of Higher Education Institutions in of the Society of Jesus in Europe and the Near East) was born with the aim of a new and deeper mutual exchange of gifts of the kind that St. Ignatius evokes at the end of his Spiritual Exercises. 
 With this aim in mind, the Presidents and Rectors from the member Faculties and Universities will meet this year in Innsbruck, Austria, from the 7th to the 9th of July. The meeting will focus on several different topics, all of which are relevant to our institutions, the wider Jesuit family, the Church, and the world. Having said this, the two main areas of the meeting will be: The official foundation of the network: institutions will freely commit to building this international and multicultural body by signing the statutes. By strengthening and stabilizing our union with special concern for each other we will be able to render our service more fruitful. The Universal Apostolic Preferences: with the official launching of the UAPs, institutions from the Kircher Network will discern how they can work together to respond to the call of the Spirit. There are many possible routes to take so having an honest and discerning conversation around the 4 final preferences will be useful to guide the activity of the network for the next 10 years. The other topics that will receive attention during the meeting will be: the Higher Education for Social Transformation programme (HEST), the Pakistan Project, the correct functioning of the network, and several others. If you are interested in learning more about the Kircher Network and its activity you are invited to regularly check the newly launched website of the network. Concurrently, this year, the University of Innsbruck will be celebrating its 350th anniversary. This feat should not to be understated for a few institutions of Higher Education have only been able to attain it.
UNITED KINGDOM
Theodore House, the Christian Heritage Centre at Stonyhurst College, was officially opened by Lord Nicholas Windsor on Friday.  This £4 million project converted a listed disused mill in the College grounds into a centre for study, retreats, Christian renewal and for the training of the laity in Christian leadership. Lord Nicholas, youngest son of the Duke and Duchess of Kent and a convert to Catholicism, is a Royal Patron of Theodore House. He unveiled a plaque on the site of the converted corn mill in the presence of Lord Shuttleworth, the Lord Lieutenant of Lancashire, and more than 200 dignitaries. The opening ceremony also involved a blessing by the Rt Rev John Arnold, the Catholic Bishop of Salford, and the Rt Rev Julian Henderson, the Anglican Bishop of Blackburn. Lord Nicholas Windsor said: "It is a very exciting moment. Theodore House will be a centre of excellence in the fields of formation, study and retreats. It should be known about by schools, parishes and universities as a place where people can visit. It would be the purpose - squarely and fully - of the centre to be part of the 'New Evangelisation' and I think that is the mission." Theodore House is named after St Theodore of Tarsus, a 7th century Archbishop of Canterbury who worked for Christian unity within the British Isles. Architect's model of Theodore HouseIt has 39 beds, a small library, two seminar rooms, a lecture theatre, and a refectory for the use of visitors, retreatants and scholars. Aid to the Church In Need, the charity that supports persecuted Christians, will be among the groups providing retreats for school children and other groups. The Christian Heritage Centre will allow greater access to the magnificent collection of historical and religious artefacts and relics amassed by the Society and Jesus and held by Stonyhurst College on behalf of the Catholic community of Great Britain. The collection includes relics associate with Mary, Queen of Scots, St Edmund Campion and St Thomas More as well as countless other English martyrs. Prominent reactions Cardinal Vincent Nichols, Archbishop of Westminster, said: "Theodore House, with it is programmes for people of all ages and cultures, creates an ecumenical environment, which will promote dialogue, cherish diversity and encourage respect, as well as tolerance, for all. I pray that this initiative will enrich spiritually all those who spend time in these beautiful surroundings and may they, like St Theodore, be inspired to become a powerful force for reconciliation and healing within a divided Church." Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury, said: "I send my best wishes and the assurance of my prayers at the opening of Theodore House as a place of retreat, study and training. Theodore of Tarsus was the 8th Archbishop of Canterbury. I am the 105th. He came from a far land, fleeing persecution, and exercised his ministry as a bishop, teacher, evangelist and pastor here in England. It is fitting that this place of faith, prayer, education and hospitality is named after him.I pray that God bless the work of this centre, those who serve here and those who come to benefit from it." Archbishop Angaelos, Coptic Orthodox Archbishop of London, said: "As we enjoy our freedom to worship and freedom to live out our Christian Faith, we must never forget the suffering of those who, even in our own times, have none of those same privileges. I hope and pray that Theodore House will deepen the understanding of our rich Christian heritage, and help to form a new generation of Christian leaders who spread the Gospel and serve the nation. Theodore House"Recalling the origins of St Theodore; his refugee status; his experience of persecution; his considerable learning in Theology, music, languages and the sciences; we must bring the same combination of Faith and life to a society that often believes it can do without God. It is my earnest prayer that Theodore House, and the Christian Heritage Centre, will renew the vision and mission of St Theodore to Britain." Lord Alton of Liverpool, Chairman of the Christian Heritage Centre at Stonyhurst, said: "Whether for groups preparing for Confirmation of First Communion, or for parish or school retreats, Theodore House and the Christian Heritage Centre should be a 'must-visit' destination. Set in stunning countryside, at the heart of the Tolkien Trail, it will also be the perfect place for families and individuals wanting to spend a few days recharging their batteries. The name Theodore means 'gift from God' and hopefully time spent at Theodore House will prove to be a gift to anyone who is searching for Him,or wanting to know God better."
SPAIN
CRISTIANISME I JUSTÍCIA is a study center, dedicated to reflecting on social and theological issues. Booklet number 169: Dismantling the hells In the face of the hells created by violence, oppression, and repression, the victims of injustice seem to have no other alternative than fight (action-reaction) or flight (silent submission). This booklet explores the “third way” of Jesus, which goes far beyond those two options. This “third way” is the path of active non-violence, a path that requires great lucidity, creativity, faith, and constancy. It comes out of a long biblical tradition, and it acquires special meaning in the context of our present-day society. Download the Booklet Joan Morera Perich, a Jesuit, earned his licentiate in Biblical Theology from the Gregorian Pontifical University of Rome, with a thesis that compares active nonviolence in the Suffering Servant of Isaiah with the active nonviolence of Jesus of Nazareth. He is the author of Diàleg de sords? Pedagogia per a reconciliar conflictes(Claret 2009) [Dialogue of the Deaf? Pedagogy for Reconciling Conflicts], and he is interested in assisting victims of conflicts, using the active nonviolence of the Kingdom.

Preparing for Mission

LEBANON
From the 30th January to the 3rd February a meeting was held in Lebanon for recently ordained priests of the Province. On each day talks were given by various speakers touching  topics such as child abuse, the sexual life of the consecrated person as seen by a psychotherapist, and also confession. There were also times for sharing in groups. On the second day, various practical points were discussed, such as ordination and the preparation for its celebration. A good part of the third day was spent in sharing in small groups. A lay-person, Sandra Chaoul, came to give a talk about formation in Ignatian leadership. Among other things, she spoke about a formation session on communal discernment and apostolic planning. Next another lay-person, Hyam Abou Shedide, a journalist, spoke about the media and the fact that they touch the three fundamental centres of the human person: intellect, heart and instinct. The afternoon was dedicated to an outing and during the Mass the young priests renewed their vows. The participants appreciated the exchanges among themselves and with the animators. The spirit throughout was pleasant and brotherly.
SPAIN
The members of the Assistancy for South Europe (EMR), provincials of the Euro Mediterranean area, Portugal, Slovenia and Spain, plus two delegates of the Elderly, met in Madrid, in the Jesuit Curia on February 8th of 2019. Frank Janin, President of the European Conference also attended the meeting. It began, as usual, sharing the situation of the four provinces. Then the President of the European Conference talked about Formation Centers. After that, other major themes: vocations, concerning Provinces work, the formation itinerary of the candidates prior to the novitiate, and the protection of minors and vulnerable adults, to build a true culture in the Assistance. The dates chosen for this meeting coincided with the JCEP President’s consult and the orders to the diaconate celebrated in Madrid on February 9th. Several Jesuits ordained belong to the provinces of the Assistance.
POLAND
On January 28-31, the brothers of the Society of Jesus, belonging to the PMA Province met in Kalisz. The meeting was of a formative and recreational character. Considering before God the spiritual path of Ignatius Loyola, they shared the joy of vocation. Despite the sadness caused by the departure to the Lord of the two oldest brothers who died in January, eleven Jesuits of different ages looked to the future with hope, praying for new vocations. Father Ryszard Friedrich SJ, an experienced spiritual guide, helped to confront the spirituality of the founder of the Order with the spiritual experience of the brothers working in Warsaw, Kalisz, Gdynia and Gdańsk. Have I experienced such a time in my life that I could compare it with the experience of St. Ignatius in the cave in Manresa? This is one of the key questions answered by the participants of the meeting in Kalisz. Once this question made them choose the Jesuit Order. Today, they confirmed and thanked God that they could serve Him just as the converted knight Ignatius and his companions used to serve Him.
EUROPE
First vows, last vows, diaconal ordinations and priestly ordinations.