May 20, 2021 begins the Society of Jesus and the Ignatian family’s worldwide celebration of the Ignatian Year. On that date 500 years ago, Ignatius Loyola was wounded by a cannonball while defending Pamplona. For him it was a major failure and a change of his plans for a future full of riches and worldly exploits. It led Ignatius to have bigger dreams centered no longer on himself but on God.
Father General Arturo Sosa, SJ, announced the Ignatian year will run until July 31, 2022. We celebrate this year to remind ourselves of the daily opportunity to experience like Ignatius a new conversion and to live a transforming experience. We allow the Lord to reveal to us a new enthusiasm, interior and apostolic, a new life, and new ways of following Christ. We aim to be future-focused and attend to the Universal Apostolic Preferences of the Jesuits: promoting the Spiritual Exercises, walking with the excluded, journeying with youth, and caring for our common home. That is why the theme we have chosen for the year is “to see all things new in Christ.”
“The Ignatian year offers us a great opportunity…. Like St. Ignatius in his conversion, we realize that ‘Yes, change is possible. Yes, our hearts can be softened. Yes, our world can find new ways forward.’” – Fr. General Arturo Sosa, S.J.
Here are some events scheduled to mark the launch of the Ignatian Year:
The Office of Ignatian Spirituality will host One Ignatian Community, a 30-minute bi-lingual prayer service at 7 PM on Wednesday, May 19th. USA East Provincial, Joseph M. O’Keefe, SJ, among others, will reflect on the vision of the Ignatian Year to deepen our practice of Ignatian spirituality and find new possibilities for ourselves and for our world.
The USA East Province will host An Ignatian Year Celebration: Honoring Senior Jesuits at 7 PM on Thursday, May 20th. The virtual celebration will honor senior Jesuits and present the Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam Award to Dr. Anthony Fauci and his wife, Dr. Christine Grady.
The Roman Curia of the Society of Jesus will host Pilgrims with Ignatius, a live prayer broadcast at 8 PM (EDT) on Sunday, May 23, 2021. Join and pray with the worldwide community of Jesuits and Ignatian partners.
New book by Father General – Walking With Ignatius
To help kick-off the Ignatian Year, Father General Arturo Sosa, S.J. has published a new book, Walking With Ignatius. The book focuses on the current challenges facing the Catholic Church, what it means to lead the Society of Jesus, the situation in his native Venezuela, his relationship with Pope Francis, the first Jesuit Pope in history, and the world revealed by the pandemic.