While it is meaningful and noteworthy to reflect on our blessings on anniversaries and special occasions, for Jesuits such reflection is part of our everyday lives. In fact, in the daily Examen, according to the Spiritual Exercises of Saint Ignatius, the first step toward spiritual well-being amounts to giving “thanks to God our Lord for the favors received.”
Although there is a great deal for which I give thanks, I am particularly grateful for the 496 Jesuits of the USA Northeast Province and the work that they do both in the United States and abroad. For purposes of understanding the extent of their work, here is a snapshot describing how the USA Northeast Province Jesuits are assigned:
- 69 minister in Jesuit parishes and other churches
- 29 assist those in need at social ministries
- 22 focus on spiritual ministries at our retreat centers and other locations
- 159 spark intellectual curiosity at our colleges and universities
- 45 are transforming lives in our high schools and middle schools
- 27 serve those on the margins at international ministries
- 32 Jesuits are preparing to profess vows or to be ordained
- 17 guide our mission and identity in province administration
- 20 are directors of Jesuit communities and residences
- 76 are senior Jesuits praying for the Church and the Society
The province’s priests and brothers, as well as men in formation (pictured in the brochure
), have one overarching mission in common; all are spreading the Good News of Jesus Christ. Whether it is ministering in our schools, parishes, retreat houses, houses of formation, or health care centers, all of our work is for the greater glory of God.
In addition to being grateful for my fellow Jesuits and the lay colleagues who share in the work of the USA Northeast Province with me, I am also profoundly grateful for you. Indeed, without you as our partner, none of this work would be possible. We depend tremendously on the support that you give us through your many prayers and for your generous gifts, especially for the benefit of our men in formation, those who serve our various apostolates, and those living in our health care centers.
In my daily prayers, I give thanks for the blessing of your companionship on this wonderful journey that allows the Jesuits to enhance the lives of so many of God’s people—far and near. May God continue to bless you and all who are dear to you!
In Corde Jesu,
Very Rev. John J. Cecero, S.J.
Provincial, USA Northeast Province