We all share in the same mission, within and alongside the church.
Mission Has a Church
March 29, 2017 - by Kevin O'Brien
(During this Lenten season, we are taking time to reflect on some of the values that are fundamental both to the Ignatian life and to our organization. We will take a look at spirituality, spiritual direction, collaboration, leadership, and mission, focusing on how these values are understood in the Ignatian tradition.)
It’s been said that the church doesn’t have a mission, the Mission has a church. In looking at what “mission” means from an Ignatian context, I find this helpful. For the concepts that make up what we understand as “Ignatian Spirituality” give us a way of perceiving the world and our place in it. Among these concepts are the goodness of creation and our gratitude for all around us; the acknowledgement that we are graced sinners and desire to be forgiven and made whole through God’s love; that we share that love with all around us; that Christ walks alongside us as we partner in building God’s Kingdom of justice and righteousness.
None of these concepts were necessarily original to Ignatius. Of course, he built upon the work of the women and men of the church who came before him. His great contribution to the church and the world was to unite all this into a coherent system as well as to give us some practical tools that make these concepts real in our daily lives. Prayer forms like the Examen, Ignatian Contemplation and of course the foundational experience of Ignatian Spirituality – the Spiritual Exercises – ground us in the reality around us, but also motivate us to become active co-creators of the new heaven and earth that was promised.
Thus, there is no “Ignatian mission” per se. We all share in the same mission, within and alongside the church. There are Ignatian inspired people and communities around the world who are committed to living out this mission from a particular perspective, that of freely sharing what we’ve been freely given, namely everything.
The Ignatian Volunteer Corps, a national non-profit organization serving the needs of the poor through the volunteer work of experienced women and men aged 50 or better, seeks a full-time regional director for Northern Virginia to plan, develop and manage the regional program and office.
On April 21, the Office of Ignatian Spirituality and the School of Theology and Ministry at Boston College are offered a workshop for spiritual directors. Melissa Kelly, PhD, presented the workshop entitled "Beyond the Myths of Grief: Wisdom for Spiritual Accompaniment." More than 300 people participated in-person at Boston College or live online. The video recording and supporting materials are now available online.
Contemplative Leaders in Action is now accepting applications for new cohorts forming in Boston, Charlotte, New York, Philadelphia, Seattle, St. Louis, and Washington, DC. The application deadline is May 14. Apply today!
May 3, 2018 – This past weekend, the Office of Ignatian Spirituality’s Hispanic Ministry hosted an Ignatian silent retreat at Loyola on the Potomac retreat house in Faulkner, Maryland. Retreatants traveled from Raleigh, Richmond, and Washington, DC, to participate in the weekend retreat offered in Spanish. In total, 26 people participated.
The Office of Ignatian Spirituality's Hispanic Ministry led a day-long, Lenten retreat for a charismatic Catholic community in Winston Salem, North Carolina. The retreat, conducted in Spanish, was held on Saturday, March 10, 2018, at Our Lady of Mercy Parish.
On Sunday, Feb. 25, the OIS Hispanic Ministry hosted “Reconnecting with Ignatius,” a day-long program for graduates of the School of Igantian Spirituality (the “Escuela”), which was previously offered at the Loyola Jesuit Center in Morristown, New Jersey.
Rev. Dennis McNally, SJ, is a Jesuit artist who has directed more than a hundred individuals through the Spiritual Exercises in Daily Life (19th Annotation). His paintings have become a way of praying, and he offers them for your consideration.