Society of Jesus Statement on Supreme Court Decision

Society of Jesus Statement on Supreme Court Decision

Society of Jesus Statement on Supreme Court Decision

Society of Jesus in the United States Welcomes Overruling of Roe v. Wade
June 24, 2022

The Society of Jesus in the United States welcomes the Supreme Court’s decision to overrule Roe v. Wade. Abortion is a massive injustice in our society, and today’s ruling is a critical step toward the legal protection of all unborn children. As we wrote in our 2018 pro-life statement Protecting the Least Among Us, “The most fundamental building block of a just social order is respect for human life. Until men and women individually and collectively make a profound commitment to the value and dignity of all human life, we will never find the true peace, justice and reconciliation God desires for us.”

We also affirm our belief that building what Saint John Paul II called a “culture of life” requires a stronger social safety net than our country has today. To be truly pro-life, we must support all women, expectant parents and their children by advocating for policies like universal health care, paid parental leave and a more equitable distribution of our country’s abundant resources.

We approach this topic as pastors, scholars, social activists and educators. No part of our ministry is removed from the essential work of promoting and protecting the dignity of every child of God. We pray that the Lord might continue to inspire our efforts and to help us always see the face of Christ revealed in each person, both before their birth and after it.

This statement is published by the Jesuits, on their website . We have reprinted it here in full.

 

Summer Reading: The What, How, and Why of Prayer

Summer Reading: The What, How, and Why of Prayer

Summer Reading: The What, How, and Why of Prayer

If you are looking to explore prayer you might try one or more of these links. What is Ignatian prayer? How can I pray? Why do we pray? These questions all speak to a desire to grow closer to God.

If you are looking to explore approaches to Ignatian prayer you might enjoy one or more of these essays and article, which are linked at the end of the descriptions. 

Why Do We Pray? By William A. Barry, SJ 
“We pray, then, at our deepest level, because we are drawn by the bonds of love. We pray because we love, and not just for utilitarian purposes.” The Ignatian Spirituality website has a beautiful article by Fr. Barry, which you can find here.

A Short Course on Prayer By J.J. O’Leary, SJ
Fr. O’Leary explains that prayer begins with reality. Some of the comments and questions are directed specifically to students or teachers, but the full article is relevant to anyone seeking a prayer life that touches the inner core based on an awareness of self. A link to the full article is here.

What Prayer Is By Thomas H. Green, SJ 
This chapter from Fr. Green’s Opening to God provides a basic description of prayer. It’s a meaty essay, that provides theological, historical context for those of us who have not deeply studied this; Green discusses the effects of semi-Pelagianism (Fr. Green explains what that means) on our traditional concepts of prayer and goes on to describe prayer as the opening of our hearts and minds to God. Fr. Green’s article is found here.

Praying with Scripture By Douglas J. Leonhardt, SJ
Fr. Leonhardt explains Lectio Divina and Gospel Contemplation, two ways to pray with Scripture. His essay is here.

Distractions in Prayer By Kevin O’Brien, SJ
Fr. O’Brien encourages those who are experiencing distractions in prayer. His article can be found here.

Experiences of Boredom or Dryness in Prayer By Kevin O’Brien, SJ
Fr. O’Brien counsels careful discernment of feelings of boredom or dryness in prayer. Like all interior movements, they can tell us something. Read his article here .

Review Prayer by Keeping a Journal By Kevin O’Brien, SJ
Fr. O’Brien offers some questions to ask after a period of prayer that might be helpful to consider while journaling. You can read his article here.

Prayer: A Personal Response to God’s Presence By Armand M. Nigro, SJ
A straightforward description of prayer as a loving response to God’s presence. Fr. Nigro describes the 5 “P’s” of prayer and ends with a suggestion for group or family prayer in an article found here.

Hopefully one or more of these essays spark your interest during this summer season.  May it be a season of renewed prayer for each of us.  And, as always if you’ve found something you’d like to talk over, drop us a line, or give us a call!

The Daily Examen

The Daily Examen

The Daily Examen

The Daily Examen is a technique of prayerful reflection on the events of the day in order to detect God’s presence and discern his direction for us.

The Examen is an ancient practice in the Church that can help us see God’s hand at work in our whole experience.
The method presented here is adapted from a technique described by Ignatius Loyola in his Spiritual Exercises.

St. Ignatius thought that the Examen was a gift that came directly from God, and that God wanted it to be shared as widely as possible. This is a version of the five-step Daily Examen that St. Ignatius practiced.
1. Become aware of God’s presence.
2. Review the day with gratitude.
3. Pay attention to your emotions.
4. Choose one feature of the day and pray from it.
5. Look toward tomorrow.

For details about each step of the Examen, read How Can I Pray?
From IgnatianSpirituality.com

When Being a “Man For and With Others” Means Being Alone: My Experience with Covid

When Being a “Man For and With Others” Means Being Alone: My Experience with Covid

When Being a “Man For and With Others” Means Being Alone: My Experience with Covid

A few weeks ago, one of the Jesuits in the community tested positive for Covid-19. I followed protocol and immediately conducted a rapid test on myself. I was not surprised to find a negative result for that test as I felt quite good. I was relieved that my busy week would not be interrupted. Our protocol calls for a second test to be administered on the third day after a community member tests positive. This test, on a Sunday morning, came back positive.

Now, I was not the one to help others – I was the one in need of help. Fr. Paul rearranged his schedule to cover all three Masses on that Sunday, preside at the scheduled funeral on Monday, and filled in at some Masses in nursing home facilities in the parish. I was grateful for the help. However, I found the experience taught me something about “being with and for others” .

The phrase “with and for others” has evolved from a speech given by Superior General Pedro Arrupe, S.J., to Jesuit Alumni in Valencia Spain in 1973. The idea of service evoked by the phrase describes the paramount objective of Jesuit education. Since then, the phrase has evolved to “men and women for and with others.”

I experienced some mild symptoms on Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday. I knew that I was sick and that quarantine was the best for everyone. On Wednesday, I was feeling much better and felt ready to get back to work. Thursday was to be the last day of quarantine – followed by a few days of regular activities with a mask. I had a regular doctor’s appointment scheduled for Friday, my mother was scheduled to visit here with a friend and I had several weekend liturgies. I tested positive on Thursday – which caused my Dr appointment to be canceled. I tested positive on Friday which postponed my Mom’s visit. Fr. Paul began to make contingency plans for the weekend liturgy – a Communion service as no priest would be available to say Mass. Fortunately, I tested negative on Saturday. We still took precautions – I wore a mask throughout the liturgy, increased the distance between me and the altar servers, did not distribute Communion, and Deacon John presided at the scheduled baptism.

To be with and for others means to have the others’ best interest at heart. It would have been easy to say “I’m feeling great” and to return to normal activity without a second thought. While I would be with others, I would not be with them in their best interest. Instead, my being with and for others meant some distance – time alone in quarantine and distance in the ministry. It meant asking for help and receiving help, a change from being the one who gives help.

As we think about being a community that is with and for others, we might pause to consider how we want to be with one another. To be with one another in a way that allows us to flourish individually and collectively.
Fr. Brian Conley, S.J.

Prayerful Concerns of Our Parish Community: 4th Sunday of Easter

Prayerful Concerns of Our Parish Community: 4th Sunday of Easter

Prayerful Concerns of Our Parish Community: 4th Sunday of Easter

Each week, we’ll share the Prayers of the Faithful from the weekend. You may find this to be a helpful way to guide your own reflections, prayers, and conversations with God. Below you will find the Prayers of the Faithful 4th Sunday of Easter – Mother’s Day May 8, 2022

God of love and life, your Son knows the sound of our voices, knows our joys and what makes us afraid. Because we know Jesus, we can pray:

On this Mother’s Day we pray for all mothers. Bless those who are mothers today and those who seek to be. Embrace and receive into your love our mothers and grandmothers who have died. Be with those for whom being a mother is hard or scary, those who may be alone, those whose children are hurting or absent or who have died. Bless those who are not biological mothers but who do and have given motherly care to others. For mothers, we pray to the Lord.

Bless those who are angry or confused or fearful about the coming Supreme Court decision. Let those rejoicing do so with compassion. Help us to find ways to respect all persons and to work to safeguard all people, realizing that respect for life does not end at birth, we pray to the Lord.

We pray for people who feel unsafe because of other legislation or court decisions, especially young people struggling to discover their true selves. For their safety and well-being and for those who find it hard to understand their struggle, we pray to the Lord.

For the sick, may we tend them and visit them, for the hungry may we feed them, for those fleeing danger or poverty in their homelands, may we find ways to welcome them. May we, in these ways care for our brothers and sisters as Jesus cares for us, we pray to the Lord.

For each of us, that we may hear the voice of Jesus, speaking to each of us in a very personal and loving way, calling us to trust his love. May our hearts let go of fears and suspicions and our religion be a joyous and generous response to the love we have received, and not a duty or obligation, we pray to the Lord.

That those who have died will have found wholeness and fulfillment in God’s everlasting life. At this liturgy we especially remember:
4:30 PM Marie O’Connell
7:00 AM For the People of the Parish both Living & Deceased
8:00 AM Katherine & Thomas McMulkin
9:00 AM Jimmy &Kay Nappi
10:00 AM Living Intention for Anna and Joe Stein & Families
5:00 PM Ursala Castillo
We pray to the Lord.

Lord God, we hunger and thirst for your loving kindness. Care for us well in answer to these prayers, so that we may follow your Son and know the fullness of life, both now and forever. Amen.

Blessing Teachers

Blessing Teachers

Blessing Teachers

As National Teacher Appreciation Week began on Sunday (May 1), we took the opportunity to offer blessing of teachers at the weekend Masses. For teachers, former teachers, retired teachers – all educators – we offer this prayer of blessing in the Ignatian tradition of education:

Loving God bless our teachers and give them generous hearts that they may serve you and their students as you and they deserve.
That they lead their students to find joy in learning and to thirst for greater and deeper knowledge of how they are called to labor with you in the wonder and mystery of your ongoing work of creation,
That they witness for their students the personal love and care that you have for each of us, so that they might attain the knowledge and freedom to achieve their full potential as young men and women created in your image and likeness,
That they teach as Jesus did so that by following His example our students will grow up to be men and women in service with and for others,
That they help form their students into persons of intellectual competence, moral integrity, and religious conviction whose actions are informed by conscience, infused with compassion and inspired by a commitment to a faith that seeks justice for all your people, particularly among the poor, suffering, and the neglected.
Amen.

Thank you educators for all you do!

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