Father General has appointed Fr Franck Janin as President of the Conference of European Provincials. Fr Janin is currently provincial of South Belgium and Luxembourg.
Born in France in 1958, Franck joined the Society of Jesus in 1984 in the Province of South Belgium and Luxembourg (BML). Part of his formation was in Toronto, Canada. He was socius of the novice master and novice master in the joint novitiate of North and South Belgium from 1995-2000 after which he joined the team in the spiritual centre of the South Belgian Jesuits near Namur, becoming the Director in 2002. He has been Provincial of BML since 2011.
“I am really honoured and humbled that Fr General has chosen me to take up this mission” said Fr Janin. “Europe is at a key moment in its history. Many people are wondering about its future. However Pope Francis recently said that Europe now “is called to rediscover its proper identity’ and that “this requires recovering its roots in order to shape its future’. I believe that the Society of Jesus, based as we are in so many parts of Europe has a valuable role to play in helping Europe recover these roots. Our spirituality, which helps people find God in their lives in a very personal way and be rooted in Him, which stresses the importance of dialogue between cultures, faiths and religions, which wants to promote reconciliation and justice (GC 36) has something precious to give. The question is how to offer what we have with humility but also with confidence. Europe is looking for a new vision. My hope is that we, European Jesuits and all of those with whom we share and carry the mission entrusted to us by Christ, together could be more and more a sign that unity and communion are possible.”
Key projects underway in the Conference just now include a project entitled Higher Education for Social Transformation, linking the Jesuit faculties and Universities with the Jesuit social centres. The CEP is currently also running an Ignatian Leadership programme as well as workshops on the safeguarding of minors.
“I am delighted that Franck Janin has been chosen by Father General to be the CEP President” said Fr. John Dardis, the current President. “He brings many great qualities including those of creativity, energy and real spiritual depth as well as expertise in discernment. The role of a Conference President involves building relationships among the Major Superiors and helping to promote a more universal vision. I pray that my successor will enjoy his new mission and that he will feel God’s closeness and love as he prepares to take up the role.”
The CEP is composed of 22 provinces and 2 regions and has over 4,000 Jesuits as well as thousands of collaborators. On July 31st, the provinces of South Belgium-Luxembourg and France will form one new province; Fr Janin has played a key role in this development.
Fr Janin will take office in late summer 2017.
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