13 November (Feast of St Stanislaus Kostka): Thank You for Saying ‘Yes’

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Today (13 November) is the feast of St Stanislaus Kostka SJ, patron saint of novices. I admit that I am not familiar with this saint, apart from hearing his name in passing, and upon some research, discovered that he died at the young age of seventeen. Despite his short life, and even shorter time still, within the Society of Jesus (he entered as a novice in October 1567, and died August 1568), we can still see in him, values and virtues to be admired and imitated. As such, we pause to remember and pray for all who have said ‘yes’ to God’s calling, as religious, and especially our novices within the Society of Sisters, FCJ. We thank you for being open to the Spirit of God at work within your lives, and thank you for choosing to say yes and accept the gifts and challenges that life holds.

Surrender does not come easy to most of us, yet in all of us, we are called to do just this. It is not just for those discerning a vocation, or for the youth, because we are all called to surrender to the greater dream God has for us. It takes humility and trust to be empty vessels in which to carry living water. And it takes courage and strength to be open to the workings of love within us and for us.

We continue to pray and work for the building of God’s kingdom through the formation of people. We continue to say ‘yes’ and to say, ‘thank you,’ especially to our novices and those in training.

 

Day 17 of #31DaysWithIgnatius

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Here is tonight’s glorious #sunset; which when coupled with this #prayer by@jamesmartinsj, makes for an invitation to an #examen:

“Who did I love today, God?
Who did you let me love?
Who did you call me to love?
Who was difficult to love?
Who loved me?

Thank you.”

#IgnatianSpirituality
#ignatian
#spirituality #magis #fgiat #nature #sky#FcjSisters #australia #winter #love#gratitude #amdg

In celebration of Ignatian Spirituality, and to mark the feast of St Ignatius of Loyola (31 July), I have taken on the challenge of posting a picture a day that speaks to me of the lessons learned from all things ‘Ignatian’; including ‘finding God in all things.’ Here it is, as posted on Instagram (@fcjAustralia).

Day 8 of #31DaysWithIgnatius

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St Ignatius said to his #Jesuits – “Go, set the world on fire!” No, not literally, but apostolically. Go and live the #magis – the #more – in a way that seeks to know Christ more fully, to love him more deeply and to follow him more passionately.

Even in the small quiet moments, one can still #celebrate with #joy and #gratitude. And #sparkle.

In celebration of Ignatian Spirituality, and to mark the feast of St Ignatius of Loyola (31 July), I have taken on the challenge of posting a picture a day that speaks to me of the lessons learned from all things ‘Ignatian’; including ‘finding God in all things.’ Here it is, as posted on Instagram (@fcjAustralia).

Day 7 of #31DaysWithIgnatius

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Being #busy forces me to prioritise.
So I recall the #firstprinciple and foundation:

“The First Principle and Foundation invites us to see the world as a product of love. We have to affirm the goodness of the world. The first grace is to know that each one of us is a product of God’s love.” Excerpt from Discovering Your Dream: How Ignatian Spirituality Can Guide Your Life by Gerald M. Fagin, SJ

#one #first #priorities #IgnatianSpirituality#self #guide #awareness #StIgnatius#spirituality #31dayswithIgnatius

 

In celebration of Ignatian Spirituality, and to mark the feast of St Ignatius of Loyola (31 July), I have taken on the challenge of posting a picture a day that speaks to me of the lessons learned from all things ‘Ignatian’; including ‘finding God in all things.’ Here it is, as posted on Instagram (@fcjAustralia).

Reblog | Love: The Catalyst of Spiritual Evolution

In light of recent events in our part of the world, with vigils being held across the country in prayer, solidarity and peaceful protest for more humane asylum seeker policies,more compassionate acts and more decent approaches toward our fellow human beings, I wish to share something from our blog-friend William, that he reposted on his site.

The original post is entitled Love: The Catalyst of Spiritual Evolution and can be found in full on

The Green Hills Philosopher, but for now, I will share some main points in support of yesterday’s action in standing with asylum seekers.

For Jesuit philosopher, Teilhard de Chardin, to cite the article:

…The human condition necessarily leads to the voluntary psychic unity of humankind. He also acknowledged that evolution is an ascent toward consciousness and therefore, signifies a continuous upsurge toward what he called the Omega Point, which for all intents and purposes, is God.

In other words, love is much more than sentiment or feeling, but a unifying force within our evolution as a specie. To grow into our humanity is to grow in association with others, in relationship with others, so as to reach our fulfillment in God.

Mainstream news outlets have said relatively little so far on the hundreds of vigils held across Australia, but the thousands of lights and voices who made them happen is nothing short of a great sign of hope – if not for immediate policy change, then at the very least, for all who were present or connected in some way.

Our efforts are nothing without love, nor is our true human development. To quote from the article again, this time, from Leonardo Boff:

It is not necessary to be more religious, but more humble, more a part of nature, responsible for her sustainability, and more careful in all human activity. Humanity must return to the Earth, from which it has exiled itself, and become her guardian. Then the natural contract will be remade. And by also opening up to the Creator, humanity’s infinite thirst would be satiated, and the reward would be peace.

image

Image credit: Asylum Seeker Resource Centre (ASRC)

Image: Calling All Ignatian Women…

Our Lady wore gold roses on her feet. The Franciscans have their trademark brown sandal. The Discalced Carmelites have only in relatively recent history starting wearing footwear (that’s a joke!) and Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI has his preference of jolly cardinal red footwear.

The mission is laborious, the journey can be tough, as Ignatian women then, what do you think of these pumps?

Keeping Company

Thank you to Fr Paul Campbell SJ at People For Others for bringing these to my attention.

Lesson: Don’t forget to laugh and share in the silliness. We’ll walk with you…

The Advent

Aside

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The Advent

by Anthony de Mello SJ

The events of history were controlled
for my coming to this world
no less than for the coming of the Savior.
The time had to be ripe,
the place just right,
the circumstances ready,
before I could be born.

God chose the parents of his Son
and endowed them with the personality they needed
for the child that would be born.
I speak to God about the man and woman that he chose to be my parents
until I see that they had to be
the kind of human beings they were
if I was to become
what God meant me to be.

The Christ child comes, like every other child,
to give the world a message.
What message have I come to give?
I seek guidance from the Lord to express it
in a word
or image.

Christ comes into this world
to walk a certain path,
fulfil a certain destiny.
He consciously fulfilled what had be “written” for him.
As I look back I see in wonder what was “written”
and thus far been fulfilled
In my own life,
And for each part of that script,
However small,
I say, “Thanks”
To make it holy with my gratitude.

I look with expectation
and surrender
at all that is to come
and, like Christ,
I say, “Yes. Let it be done.”

Finally I recall the song the angels sang
when Christ was born.
They sang of the peace and joy
that give God glory.

——————————————————-

As we travel more closely toward the Feast of Christmas, may we continue to be mindful of all that we have been given in terms of graces, insight and memory. May we continue to strive to walk with God and follow Him, and to do so especially with those who need our help.

Thank you for your support and encouragement, input and contribution. We would like to wish you a happy holy and Merry Christmas, filled with the peace of Christ and the joy of salvation.

In Celebration of Twitter Joy

Keeping Company

There’s celebrity (noun., a well-known or famous person) and then there’s celebrated (verb., originally of the Mass, from the Latin celebrare, meaning ‘to assemble in honour’).

Keeping CompanyWe are celebrating that editor of America magazine, author and prolific Ignatian voice, Fr James Martin SJ (a celebrity-of-sorts in our view) is officially our first ‘follower’ on Twitter. This may sound like childish star-struck glee combined with a certain geekiness for all things Ignatian, but perhaps it is also in fact, a real celebration of life and the makings of connection.

Let me explain.

There is no fanciful media circus here, but a simple acknowledgment and recognition of the other. In our following of @JamesMartinSJ, we expand our network and even horizon by reading what he’s tweeting about. Likewise in his following of Keeping Company fcJ (@walkwithyoufcj), he too will receive tweets and updates about our work and mission. Of course in no way does it mean that we’re now best buds, but a connection has been made, especially so for us, I feel, because he is our ‘first’. (Oh gosh, maybe I am a star-struck geek!)

It always feels good, it is always affirming and it is always good news when people work together. This is what community is about, what Church is about, ekklesia. Too often we hear of one party in opposition of another, or of one group as distinct from another, what about drawing on what we share in common?

Inclusion, community, welcome, mutuality, humility, acceptance, recognition and connection – these are the values of the gospel. We may never meet, Fr Martin and our mob down under, but that doesn’t matter because working for the Kingdom of God is already gift and grace itself. To be called, to be chosen, to be followers of Christ, that is something to celebrate!

So don’t mind my geeky exuberance about this little and seemingly insignificant gesture – I am celebrating that God really is present here. Even on Twitter. Even on the Internet. Please join us on Twitter, and celebrate life with us. Like us on Facebook if you haven’t already. And keep reading, talking and giving us feedback! At the end of the day, it’s not about our cause of “FCJ mission and identity promotion”, but about working together with one another for the coming and already-present Kingdom of God. And don’t you think it’s already a little like heaven?  As Jesus said to his disciples: “I no longer call you servants, but friends…” (John 15:15)

For reflection

  • How have you spread the good news today?
  • How has joy shown itself in your day? Is it something you have shared?
  • Has an encounter made a difference to your day? Or perhaps you’ve made a difference in someone’s life?
  • We are not random and separate entities. Through our baptism and through the Spirit of God, we are united. By our very creation in God, we are all held together in love.

AMDG.