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|Description||Ignatian Spirituality Periodical: South Asia
IGNIS was launched in 1972 as the Ignatian Information Service and was a part of the Ignatian Centre that had Anthony de Mello, S.J. (in Vinayalaya, Mumbai) as the Director and M.M. Balaguer (in De Nobili College, Pune) its first editor. The initial purpose of IGNIS was to help Jesuits in India and Sri Lanka to catch up with what was happening in the rest of the Society in a fast changing world and for sharing in the soulsearching, the study and the experimentation that were being carried out everywhere as part of a general programme of renewal, particularly in view of the forthcoming thirty-second General Congregation.
Eighteen months later the Major Superiors in India did an evaluation of IGNIS and left it on record that “this publication has already proved its worth and rendered real service to the Assistancy by fostering among ours a renewed interest in and taste for Ignatian Spirituality.” The editor’s torch was then passed on to Jerome Aixala Aixala, who lived at St. Xavier’s High School Mumbai.
Three generations of Jesuit scholastics managed the IGNIS office at De Nobili College, Pune. The office was then moved to St. Xavier’s College, Mumbai under Brother Jacob Jacob. IGNIS though edited and printed in Mumbai was despatched from Delhi through Brother Giles from May 1977. It was slightly ridiculous that a review printed at the Examiner Press, Mumbai was transported to Delhi where it was posted to the whole country and abroad. From July 1978 IGNIS is being despatched from Anand in Gujarat. It is printed at the well known Anand Press and distributed by the publishers Gujarat Sahitya Prakash, Anand.
In May 1983, IGNIS STUDIES was introduced as a series of occasional studies and reflections on Jesuit life and work, with special reference to India. During the first two years of its existence IGNIS brought out some “special numbers” besides, or rather instead of, the regular issues. Some readers thought that this publication, which appears every two months, should become monthly. IGNIS continued to roll out of the press every second month. But IGINS STUDIES would provide a forum to focus on a specific issue or area of our life or work looking at different aspects of a topic, often in an inter-disciplinary manner.
July 1984 Parmananda Divarkar, S.J. took over as editor of IGINIS STUDIES. It might be helpful to recall that the idea, or hope, of the Jesuit Conference of India, was to have four sets of studies every year, each issue being fairly homogeneous in content and dealing with Ignatian Spirituality and concerns of the apostolate in India today.
IGNIS 1987, with Parmananda as its editor, was the first of a new series launched in response to the call of Father General Kolvenbach that there should be a meaningful preparation for the forthcoming centenary of the birth of St. Ignatius. “Let our initiatives be such that they would help us not only to understand better the mind and heart of Ignatius, but also to realise their continuing relevance to our life and apostolate.”
Donatus Jeyaraj, S.J. of the Madurai Province took over as editor from 1992 till 1993. He tried to make the periodical part of the Ignatian Centre at Dindigul, Tamil Nadu. The purpose according to Donatus was “to share experiences, spot talent among Jesuits and organize training and courses in S.J. Spirituality.” Secondly, from then on IGNIS would appear only four times a year instead of six.
In 1994 Freddie D’Silva D’Silva, S.J. of the Karnataka Province took over editing IGNIS first from Fatima Retreat House in the city of Mangalore and then from a distant village in Bijapur. Freddie made available many of the articles that were published in other Ignatian periodicals.
In 1997 IGNIS was passed on to Paul Coutinho, S.J. who continues to be the present editor. IGNIS now carries only articles that are related to Ignatian or Jesuit spirituality and as far as possible those that have not been published in any other periodical. The nature of the articles published is scholarly, personal and pastoral. Some of the articles that appeared in IGNIS have been reprinted in other national and international periodicals. IGNIS continues to be circulated among Jesuits, religious, priests and lay persons especially the CLC both in India and abroad. IGNIS welcomes articles on Ignatian or Jesuit spirituality written in English from any part of the world.