A Spirituality That is Blossoming
As the late Jesuit theologian Fr. Dean Brackley, SJ, reminds us, for St. Ignatius, to live meant to seek and find God everywhere, in order to collaborate with God in service to others. Today, Ignatian Spirituality continues to introduce people to a life of deeper faith, hope and love. Jesuit parishes, schools, retreat houses and social ministries are helping so many people engage their spirituality, enhance their relationship with God, and integrate faith into their daily lives. Over 5,000 people took part in Jesuit retreat ministries throughout the Northeast last year.
Forty administrators, faculty, staff, and Jesuits from eight of the USA Northeast Province schools made a pilgrimage to Spain in June 2015 to travel in the footsteps of St. Ignatius along the Camino Ignaciano. In celebration of our new province, they visited the homes of St. Ignatius Loyola and St. Francis Xavier, journeyed to Montserrat and Manresa, experienced prayer, reflection, and liturgy, and concluded with time at a Jesuit school in Barcelona.
Eastern Point Retreat House in Gloucester, Mass., is scheduled to reopen in June 2016 after major renovations. Loyola Jesuit Center in Morristown, N.J. is also undergoing extensive improvements to restore the 110 year old mansion. Both centers will support expanded ministries which will reach out to people of all ages and cultures. These sacred spaces will also host spiritual programs, including training opportunities for future retreat and ministry leaders.
Our parishes, through Ignatian spirituality programs, are encouraging parishioners to deepen their faith. This year, St. Ignatius Parish in Manhattan had 12 facilitators offering evening, multiday, weekend, and retreats in daily life to more than 150 parishioners. The Jesuits of Salem, N.H., gave the full Spiritual Exercises to 26 people in Salem and Manchester during the past year. This year they will expand the retreat programs to include even more men and women.
The Jesuit Collaborative’s Hispanic Ministry Team offered Ignatian Prayer days and sessions in Spanish at Our Lady of Mount Carmel-St. Benedicta Parish in Staten Island, St. Aedan’s Church in Jersey City and St. Anthony’s Parish in Oceanside, N.Y., serving more than 150 parishioners.
Jesuit Connection and Contemplative Leaders in Actions (CLA) are two vibrant programs that are helping people in their 20s and 30s apply Ignatian spirituality to their daily lives. For more information, visit www.JesuitsEast.org/connect.