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Jesuits and Their Lay Partners

Adolfo-NicolasFr. Adolfo Nicolas, SJ, Superior General of the Jesuits, reflects on Jesuit institutions and lay people. This is from a summary of a talk he gave recently to Jesuits working in the social apostolate:

Mobility is essential to our charism; thus we need to learn a new way of discernment, to let go and move on. For example, when starting a school, we should immediately prepare our lay successors so that we can hand the work over to them after no more than 15 to 30 years. He also stressed the fact that the shrinking number of Jesuits is being compensated for by the growing number of competent lay people who wish to work in our institutions. This gives us the freedom to dream again, to be creative, flexible and mobile. He encouraged us to see our institutions as our children: let them go off, get married and go their own ways.

Read the whole summary.

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Jim Manney
Jim Manneyhttps://www.jimmanneybooks.com/
Jim Manney is the author of highly praised popular books on Ignatian spirituality, including A Simple, Life-Changing Prayer (about the Daily Examen) and God Finds Us (about the Spiritual Exercises). He is the compiler/editor of An Ignatian Book of Days. His latest book is What Matters Most and Why. He and his wife live in Ann Arbor, Michigan.


  1. I’d really like to find out more about being an associate. I’m a laywoman, but am feeling increasingly led in this direction. Can you please give me some information and help me figure out how to get started?

  2. Planning to retire in the Mobile/Fairhope area
    And get involved in the Jesuit community there
    Moving in 2019! Live in St Louis MO right now

  3. I have been an Ignatian Volunteer in Boston for two years and I have found it to be a very rewarding experience. My placement is a vibrant inner city parish. I meet monthly with the other IVC members and supportive Jesuits and I have a reflector/spiritual director to discuss how I discover God in my volunteer work and in my life. Life, service and reflection come together in the Ignation Volunteer Corps program.

  4. One might consider joining the Ignatian Volunteer Corps. It is domestic missionary work here in the US working with the poor and for a more just society. There are 16 branches in major cities across the US. It is for mature (50-ish and over ) adults.


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