Reflecting on the Past Year: An Ignatian Annual Examen

January 1, 2018 — As the new year begins, invites you to reflect on 2017 with this Ignatian Annual Examen courtesy of Xavier University’s website.

The Examen is a prayer of awareness that St. Ignatius of Loyola, the founder of the Jesuits, taught in his Spiritual Exercises. It provides an opportunity for peaceful daily reflection, inviting us to “find God in all things.” By looking back and recognizing the movement of God in all the people and events of our day, we see ourselves, in retrospect, enveloped in the One “in whom we live and move and have our being,” according to Jesuit Father George Traub and Debra Mooney in the article "Ignatian Spirituality Among the Professors."

The Examen consists of a few introspective prompts for you to follow or adapt to your own spirit. Before you begin, identify some major markers of your year to orient yourself to the time period. Pause and take a slow, deep breath or two; become aware that you are in the presence of the Lord.

As I review the past 12 months, from a year ago through to the present moment:  
What am I especially grateful for this year?

An event that took place?
Courage that I mustered?
Love and support I received?

I ask for the light to know God and to know myself as God sees me.

Where have I felt true joy this year?
What troubled me this year?
What has challenged me?
Where and when did I find an opportunity for renewal and pause?

Have I noticed God's presence in any of this?

In light of my review, what is my response to the God of my life?

As I look ahead, to the coming months what comes to mind?
With what spirit do I want to enter the next few months? The next year?

I ask for God’s presence and grace, for this spirit, as I enter the next year.


Adapted by Debra Mooney, Ph.D. from the Center for Mission and Identity at Xavier University’s Daily Examen. [Source:]

Recent News

March 13, 2018 — Fr. Michael Boughton, SJ, will serve at the BCSTM; Fr. Martin Connell, SJ, will serve at JST.

March 10, 2018 — Today the Society of Jesus celebrates the feast day of Saint John Ogilvie, SJ, a Jesuit martyr.

March 8, 2018 — Jesuit Refugee Service/USA has appointed Joan Rosenhauer to serve as the first woman in the role.

March 7, 2018 — March 9 marks the 450th anniversary of the birth of St. Aloysius Gonzaga, SJ.

March 6, 2018 - Fr. James W. O’Neil, SJ, was called to eternal life at the age of 96 on March, 3 2018. Fr. O’Neil was born on April 12, 1921, and entered the Society of Jesus on Dec. 2, 1947. He was ordained to the priesthood on June 15, 1957, and pronounced his Final Vows on June 2, 1989. He was the oldest member of the province.

March 5, 2018 - In his March prayer video, Pope Francis spoke on his intention of spiritual discernment. “Every Christian ought to grow in the ability to ‘read within’ his or her life, and to understand where and to what he or she is being called by the Lord, in order to carry on his mission,” said Pope Francis.

Feb. 28, 2018 - Fr. Donald J. Keefe, SJ, was called to eternal life on Feb. 27, 2018, at Murray-Weigel Hall, Bronx, N.Y. He was born on July 14, 1924, entered the Society of Jesus at St. Andrew-on-Hudson, Poughkeepsie, N.Y., on Sept. 7, 1953, and was ordained on June 20, 1962, at Canisius College, Buffalo, N.Y. He pronounced his final vows on Feb. 2, 1971.

view all news

Search news

Loyola House of Retreats
Loyola House of Retreats is located on 30 acres of beautiful lawns, gardens and woodland in a quiet section of Morristown, N.J.