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Vol. XIX, No. 03 23 February 2015
FROM THE CURIA
Archivum Romanum Societatis Iesu - ARSI. The annual Jesuit Catalogs for the years 1774-1853, and 1892-1914, are now online. http://www.sjweb.info/arsi/Catalog.cfm The Catalogs are the basic resource for any research in Jesuit history. This online resource has a search facility, making it easy to locate men and places within the text. P. Raul Gonzalez SJ, Sergio Palagiano and Salvatore Vassallo (of Archivum Romanum Societatis Iesu - ARSI) have worked to provide this digital resource. Making the Catalogs available online is a great help to the growing number of researchers working in the area of Jesuit history.
FROM THE PROVINCES
AFRICA: JESAM - A renewed call for commitment to safeguard creation. The Jesuit African Social Centers Network is responding to ecological concerns in the region by promoting awareness among Jesuits and their collaborators about ecology, supporting interest in the field of ecology, and encouraging transformative education to create responsible attitudes to safeguard Creation. The network is composed of 30 social centers of the Jesuits of Africa and Madagascar (JESAM) Social Apostolate, and for which ecology is one of the six themes identified where activities are focused. Three activities in November and December 2014 were undertaken to assist the network in their continuing work and focus on ecology. To learn more...
ECUADOR: Opening Regional Novitiate in Quito. A new regional novitiate to cater for the provinces of Ecuador, Bolivia, and Peru opened in the Ecuadorian city of Quito on 7th February, 2015. On the same day, 8 new novices from the provinces of Ecuador and Peru began their novitiate. They join the 9 second years novices to bring the total to 17. Novices from Bolivia will join the novitiate at a later stage.
KOREA: Peace Conference on Jeju Island. Resistance to the construction of a naval base at Gangjeong on Jeju Island, South Korea, continues although the base is already under construction. The Jeju Volcanic Island and Lava Tubes are a UNESCO World Heritage site. The most recent significant effort was the Gangjeong Peace Conference and Peace Festival organized by the Jesuit Research Centre for Advocacy and Solidarity (JAS) at the Seoguipo Catholic Parish and Gangjeong Village. Read more...
SOUTH AFRICA: Jesuit Institute Calls on State to Curb Xenophobia. The Jesuit Institute of South Africa has strongly condemned the violence against foreign persons and their businesses. The Jesuits in South Africa said they were disturbed by the debate of whether or not the attacks constitute xenophobia, saying a systematic series of attacks on over eighty foreign-owned shops and foreign-born persons cannot simply be explained away as criminal or political acts of violence. The institute added that Xenophobia in South Africa is in direct contradiction to the nation's "professed belief in humanity or Ubuntu" and is an open act of contempt for the culture of human rights central to the South African Constitution. "The shelter of protection given by our Constitution extends to all of us because we are human beings, giving recognition to our inherent dignity and equality before God. This is in accord with Catholic Social Teaching on the dignity of the human person and with the central tenet of Ubuntu - 'Umuntu ngumuntu ngabantu' a person is a person through other people." The Jesuit Institute, called on the Government to act swiftly. "State fails when it does not adequately protect all those living within its borders, when it does not enforce the law or educate citizenry in the proper way to deal with non-citizens." See http://jesuitinstitute.org.za/Our-silence-is-our-disgrace
SPAIN: Dialogue at the frontiers. In January 2015, the Society of Jesus in Spain launched the website of Diálogar en las fronteras (Dialogue at the frontiers) an initiative of EntreParéntesis. EntreParéntesis is a Madrid based center for reflection on faith, culture and justice headed by Fr Daniel Izuzquiza. The intention of the new website is to provide a platform where: Christian believers can find guidance and encouragement to live their social presence in a coherent and thoughtful manner; where unbelievers can feel comfortable bringing their vision and hearing an authoritative and credible voice of the Church; and where everyone can meet to discuss constructively. There are four main sections on the website: social justice; presence of religions in public life; digital culture as a new field where we develop our action and relationships; and faith and socio-political commitment. See www.entreparentesis.org.
UNITED KINGDOM: Former UK Minister for Education to join the Jesuit Refugee Service. The Jesuit Refugee Service (JRS) is pleased to announce that former education minister, Sarah Teather MP, will join the International Advocacy team on 1 June 2015. As advocacy adviser, Ms Teather will focus on the provision of education for refugee children the Middle East and South Sudan. Ms Teather will stand down from the British Parliament in May 2015, after 13 years in elected politics. For nearly 12 of these years she represented the London constituency of Brent Central, the most ethnically diverse in the United Kingdom.
ZIMBABWE-MOZAMBIQUE: Province Celebrations. Following the announcement of Fr General that the Zimbabwe Province and the Mozambican region were to become one under the name Zimbabwe-Mozambique Province (ZIM), about 55 Jesuits from the two countries (with 21 travelling from Zimbabwe) gathered in Angonia on the 27th of January to celebrate the birth of a new province. The day began with a visit to the Jesuit institutions around Angonia. The main celebration was the multi-lingual mass in the evening at the Centro de Spiridade in Angonia. Of the languages used, it became clear that Chichewa, one of the local languages of Mozambique, was the most common among us all as the Zimbabweans could identify with it from their novitiate experience in Zambia. Younger Mozambicans were more conversant in English as the scholastics pass through philosophical studies in English in Harare, Zimbabwe. In no time some of us who did not know Portuguese could be heard uttering some words learnt during the day. (By Fr Batanai Padya SJ)