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Premiere of Missa Papae Francisci
On June 10, 2015, Father General along with some members of the General Council and several members of the Curia community attended the premiere of "Missa Papae Francisci" at the Church of the Gesu. Written and directed by Maestro Ennio Morricone, the premiere featured Rome's Symphonic Orchestra and the choirs of the Santa Cecilia Academy and the Teatro dell'Opera. Morricone who also composed the score of the movie The Mission (1986), composed Missa Papae Francisci to mark the 200th anniversary of the restoration of the Society. Comprising an Introduction, Kyrie, Gloria, Alleluia, Sanctus, and Agnus Dei, the great Morricone brought the concert to a conclusion with a grand finale reminiscent of one of the pieces of the movie The Mission, prompting the capacity audience into a standing ovation worthy of a great maestro.
FROM THE CURIA
Called to Eternal Life - Father Severin Leitner, SJ
On 7th June, 2015, the Curia community lost one of their members, Father Severin Leitner, of the Province of Austria and a General Counsellor. Accompanied by a fellow Jesuit, he was on a mountaineering trip near Aquila, when he accidentally fell from a height of 300 meters to an instant death. Father Leitner was born in Pfunders, Bolzano (Italy) on 29 March 1945. He entered the Society of Jesus in the Austrian Province on 16 September 1965, at St. Andrea. He was ordained a priest on 6 July 1974 in Innsbruck, where he also made his final vows on 3 December 1982. In a statement, the Secretary of the Society, Father Ignacio Echarte said: "The community of the General Curia is deeply affected by this sudden loss. Severin has left us the memory of a person who was kind, available, cheerful, and always smiling. A lover of nature, he easily raised his heart in thanksgiving to God when he found himself among 'his' mountains. From these very mountains, the Lord called him. May he rest in peace!" He was put to rest on Friday, 12th June, 2015 in Rome.
SJES - European Parliament voting against the use of conflict minerals
An EU wide campaign has resulted in the European Parliament voting in favour of mandatory measures to eradicate the presence of conflict minerals in the supply chain. Among the organizations involved in this battle were some European Jesuit organisations, such as Alboan, Jesuiten Mission and Jesuit Missions. This has been a very important achievement, since, this regulation could benefit thousands of poor people in some of the most fragile and conflict-ridden countries in the developing world.
FROM THE PROVINCES
IRELAND: Jesuit Schools Unite Online
'Educate Magis' is a new initiative that aims to establish a global online community for Jesuit schools and colleges. It is hosted by the Irish Province and run out of Galway. The initiative (which is an incorporated company) is inspired by the challenge of General Congregation GC 35 which called on all Jesuit works to become a 'universal body with a universal mission'. Educate Magis hopes to be the means of enabling the schools throughout the world to collaborate in solidarity as a global community. It is the brainchild of Eamonn McGuiness, a parent who was actively involved in the Ignatian Identity Group (IIG) in Coláiste Iognáid (the Jes). He has made his time and expertise available to the Society to enable this platform be established. The international secretary for education, Fr José Mesa, oversees the work of Educate Magis with the able assistance of Dan Carmody from Boston High in the USA. (www.jesuit.ie)
ITALY: Magic of Music in Indian Jesuit Reductions of South America
On June 2, 2015, the Pontifical Institute of Sacred Music hosted "The magic of music in Indian Jesuit Reductions of South America (1609-1767)." The program featured original scores of the Jesuit composer Domenico Zipoli who was born in Prato, Italy in 1688 and died in Argentina in 1726. Missionaries in South America became authors Baroque music written and performed in the Reductions. Under the direction of Jesuits in South America, Baroque music took on characteristics of the indigenous expression to create new and original pieces. This and other concerts are now made possible thanks to the discovery in the archives of the mission of Chiquitos in Bolivia (see Jesuit Yearbook, 1999) of thousands of ancient scores of original works created from the fusion of European Baroque music with elements of local folklore. The musical instruments used in the concerts are modern, but they are made to reproduce the sound as it would have been heard from the original instruments used by the South American Indians, instruments which are now destroyed. The execution of the concert was entrusted to Domenico Zipoli Ensemble, a musical group born in 1990 with the aim of studying, transcribing, performing and spreading the ancient manuscripts.
JCU: Jesuits in Formation Gather at Loyola Marymount University
Nearly 300 Jesuits gathered at Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles this June - all Canadian and U.S. Jesuits currently in formation along with their provincials. The group included everyone from first-year novices to men in their third year of theology. The meeting, the first in the U.S. since 2006, was held to give these Jesuits an opportunity - sometime during their formation - to meet everyone else. The theme of the gathering, which ran from June 15-20, was "Global Mission in a Digital Age," which "reflects the fact that the mission of the Society of Jesus is no longer restricted to a Jesuit's own province or his own country because all Jesuits need a global perspective on their ministry," Fr. Godleski said. "We're an international Society, and we're called to minister around the world." (www.jesuits.org)
JCU: 28 New Jesuit Priests in Canada and the United States
Twenty-eight new Jesuit priests have been ordained in the Canada-USA Conference this summer, the largest group of new priests ordained by the Jesuits in more than 15 years. Nineteen of the 28 new priests attended a Jesuit high school or university. At upwards of ten years, the Jesuit formation process is rigorous. Each of the men being ordained has earned a graduate degree in theology; they have all served at Jesuit high schools and colleges, and many have travelled abroad to work with the poor. They have served in local Catholic parishes and homeless shelters and as chaplains in hospitals and prisons, just as Saint Ignatius of Loyola laid out in his precise guidelines for Jesuit formation. As they begin their first assignments as Jesuit priests, the newly ordained will embark on a variety of ministries, including working in parishes in Honduras, Puerto Rico and the U.S.; serving at Jesuit high schools and universities; continuing their studies toward advanced degrees; and serving at Jesuit ministries.
JESAM: Meeting of Jesuit Development Officers of Africa and Madagascar
The Development Officers of Africa and Madagascar met in Zambia for their annual meeting from 24th - 30th May 2015. Father Mike Lewis, SJ, JESAM President alongside Father Jorge Serrano, SJ, Assistant General Treasurer for Development Resources, were also in attendance. The workshop saw 7 lay collaborators join 15 Jesuits as they discussed Development issues respective to their Provinces. In his opening remarks, the Provincial of Zambia Malawi Province, Fr. Emmanuel Mumba, SJ emphasized the importance of the universal mission of the Society of Jesus. He also encouraged the participants to focus on the promotion of the core values of the Society of Jesus. Fr. Jorge Serrano touched on the responsibility of all Jesuits towards fundraising. He explained that the mentalities such as 'we have money in the bank' must change. 'Most Jesuits,' he said, 'have no idea how much their formation, health or education costs.' This must change in order for the Jesuits to move forward. He also encouraged all the Provinces and officers to reach out to his office whenever they needed assistance.
THAILAND: Learning Asian theology through an Experience of Buddhism
Jesuit scholastics are invited to join a four-week programme designed to guide them in examining issues of Asian theology, and understanding interreligious dialogue and the inculturation of the Catholic faith in Asia. They will do this through an intensive experience of Buddhism in the specific context of Thailand, which is predominantly Buddhist. Now in its 10th year, the 2015 East Asia Theological Encounter Programme (EATEP) will be held from July 22 to August 17 at the Seven Fountains Spirituality Centre in Chiang Mai, Thailand. Participants will attend seminars in interreligious dialogue and contextual theology conducted by Fr Michael Amaladoss SJ, director of the DiNobili Institute in Chennai, India. The purpose of these is to present to young Jesuits a more "Asian" face of Catholic theology by drawing them into reflections on their own cultures and the challenges facing their local churches. Scholastics will also spend five days in the cave monastery of Wat Tham Doi Tone to learn "Insight" meditation, and go on field trips to temples, monasteries, and historic sites in the Chiang Mai area.
ZAMBIA-MALAWI: Youth Collaboration in Jesuit Ministry
On 23 May 2015, young people from 6 Jesuit parishes gathered in Lusaka, Zambia, to participate in a Musical Concert. Dubbed "Youth Collaboration in Jesuit Ministry" the musical concert was an initiative of youths from various Jesuit ministries who feel called to give back something to the Society of Jesus. Proceeds from the Concert were donated to the care of senior Jesuits in the John Chula House Infirmary. The concert displayed talent from youth choirs in the Jesuit parishes, as well as individual singing performances. Above all, the participants were grateful that for the first time ever, young people from different works of the Society were able to come together for a common apostolic purpose.
ZIMBABWE-MOZAMBIQUE: Young People for Others
Youths from various catholic schools and parishes converged at Arrupe College, Jesuit school of Philosophy and Humanities in Harare, Zimbabwe for the TiriAfrica (We are Africa) concert on the 25th May 2015. The concert was organised by Young People for Others, a group under the leadership of a young Zimbabwean Jesuit, Batanai Padya, SJ. The concert aimed at bringing together young people in Africa of various nationalities to share their diverse cultures and beliefs and to rediscover pride in their roots. The day saw young Africans displaying their talents in the various arts that portrayed the richness of African culture. Speaking at the event, Kenyan ambassador to Zimbabwe, Ms Lucy Chelimo said: "Youths, you are the gold of Africa therefore I encourage you to be achievers of your dreams. You have a responsibility to be your brother's keeper, sharpening your future as well as that of others. Have that desire in you to work for a better United States of Africa." She also challenged all Africans to be proud of who they are. She commended the works of YPO as a youth group in motivating and inspiring other youths to do more for society especially in the area of charity.
The 2016 Yearbook of the Society of Jesus is currently being compiled. It will focus largely on the world of the refugees, of the displaced and of all those who have been forced to abandon their country because of war, famine, or persecution. A series of articles will deal with the initiatives carried out by the Jesuits on this theme in various continents. As usual, the Yearbook is published in five languages: Italian, English, French, Spanish and German. Reservations for copies must be sent by June 30 through the Socii of the individual Provinces. Non-Jesuits may request copies via our email address: firstname.lastname@example.org They should indicate their desired language, the number of copies they want, and their postal address. The Yearbook will be sent out towards the end of next October.