Jesuit Virtual Learning Academy

The Jesuit Virtual Learning Academy, an ambitious venture in online education, recently celebrated its first year of operation. The JVLA provides online for-credit courses, workshops, lectures and other learning opportunities for students at Jesuit high schools. It also offers faculty at those schools online professional development and collaboration opportunities. Courses are those not usually offered as part of a traditional high school curriculum – such as a Chinese language course and certain advanced placement (AP) […]

Best Ignatian Songs: Bolivian Baroque

Our Ignatian song last week was “Gabriel’s Oboe” from the movie “The Mission.”  The movie depicts the dramatic story of the Jesuit “reductions” in South America, communities of indigenous people whom the Jesuits protected from the rapacious colonial Spanish.  The Jesuits protected the communities, educated the young people, and introduced European culture.  If you’ve seen the movie, you’ll remember the scenes of the baroque music played and sung by Indian children. The Jesuits were expelled […]

Did Jesus Laugh?

Fr. Jim Martin, SJ, is sure he did.   He explains why to NPR’s Scott Simon.  He also talks about religious humor that goes over the line.

The Jesuit on the Waterfront

James Fisher, a professor of history at Fordham, has just published On the Irish Waterfront, the story of the New York/New Jersey waterfront, which was run by the Irish mob for the first half of the 20th century.   A review is here.  America magazine has made a video of the author talking about the book. The book’s publication is an occasion to remember John Corridan, SJ, a labor priest who worked tirelessly to reform the […]

Ignatian Spirituality in Music

Ruth Sherer Leacock is a songwriter and musician who wrote many songs as a way to preserve her experience of the Spiritual Exercises. She says, “Set it to music, I’ll remember it. The emotional power of the melodies coupled with the rhyme and rhythm of descriptive lyrics was an easy way to recall the fundamentals of a spirituality beginning to ground all of my life.” Her songs are used in retreats and liturgy. You can […]

The Spiritual Exercises in High School

Religious educators with an Ignatian bent take note. A young Jesuit named Anthony Borrow has been using the Spiritual Exercises in his classes at Dallas Jesuit College Prep school. He has developed 31 exercises for classroom sessions that include periods of reflection and writing. The purpose is “to help the student develop the skills needed to pray with the Scriptures in a creative, personal and dynamic manner.” Borrow has posted his materials on the web […]

Sign Up for E-Magis

IgnatianSpirituality.com is starting a newsletter about, you guessed it, Ignatian spirituality. It will be full of ideas, resources, links, and news. It’s called E-Magis. The first issue will be in your e-mailbox by the end of the month. Sign up for it here. E-Magis adds to Ignatian spirituality’s online presence. It joins this site and blog, a Facebook page, Twitter feed, and Paul Campbell’s blog People for Others.

Best Ignatian Songs: Gabriel’s Oboe

One of my favorite movies is The Mission, a film inspired by the Jesuit missions in South America in the eighteenth century. One of the many memorable features of this movie is the splendid soundtrack by the Italian composer Ennio Morricone. The scene below shows a Jesuit, played by Jeremy Irons, making contact with Indians who had killed a fellow Jesuit and were likely inclined to kill him. The contact comes through music, an extraordinary […]

Blog Posts of Note

Lisa Kelly on cleaning the slate. Aaron Pidel, SJ, on so-called progress in human knowledge (“The most recently founded fields of study. . . often show a peculiar and youthful zeal for proving the obvious.”) Fr. Robert Barron on the sci-fi movie “District 9.” (“It explores, with great perceptiveness, a problem that has preoccupied modern philosophers from Hegel to Levinas: how to relate to ‘the other.’”) Paul Campbell, SJ, on funny movies.

Blogwatch

A couple of interesting new bloggers have set up shop lately. Convert Webster Bull writes the blog “Why I am a Catholic.” The title of each post begins with the word “Because” (Because Gerard Manley Hopkins Was a Catholic, Because We Live in a Dark, Dark Time, Because I Have Daughters, etc.) The blog is thoughtful and well-written. A Protestant pastor named Brian Rice demonstrates the long reach of Ignatian spirituality with his new blog “Evangelicals […]

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