Memorial Saint Ignatius Loyola 2012

Statue of Ignatius Loyola
Statue of Ignatius Loyola (Photo credit: elycefeliz)
Ignatius Loyola
Ignatius Loyola (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Birth place and sanctuary of Saint Ignatius of...
Birth place and sanctuary of Saint Ignatius of Loyola, in Azpeitia, Basque Country. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Scripture readings for today's Mass are here.

Some of you may have been celebrating with 31 days with St Ignatius from Loyola.
If you missed it there's still time get all the posts for each day from here.

 Ignatius always challenges us to keep our focus on God, asks us to find God in all things, and reminds us to do everything for God’s greater glory.
"They should practice the seeking of God’s presence in all things, in their conversations, their walks, in all that they see, taste, hear, understand, in all their actions, since His Divine Majesty is truly in all things by His presence, power, and essence."

from Letters of Saint Ignatius of Loyola

The First Principle and Foundation
(St. Ignatius of Loyola, as paraphrased by David L. Fleming, S.J.)

St. Ignatius begins his Spiritual Exercises with The First Principle and Foundation. While not typically thought of as a prayer, it still contains much that is worth reflecting on.
The Goal of our life is to live with God forever.
God, who loves us, gave us life.
Our own response of love allows God's life
to flow into us without limit.

All the things in this world are gifts from God,
Presented to us so that we can know God more easily
and make a return of love more readily.
As a result, we appreciate and use all these gifts of God
Insofar as they help us to develop as loving persons.
But if any of these gifts become the center of our lives,
They displace God
And so hinder our growth toward our goal.

In everyday life, then, we must hold ourselves in balance
Before all of these created gifts insofar as we have a choice
And are not bound by some obligation.
We should not fix our desires on health or sickness,
Wealth or poverty, success or failure, a long life or a short one.
For everything has the potential of calling forth in us
A deeper response to our life in God.

Our only desire and our one choice should be this:
I want and I choose what better leads
To God's deepening his life in me.
 This is a fine reflection on St Ignatius and what he has to teach us about prayer and leadership. Ignatius encourages us to use our imagination when we pray.


I especially like this quote at the end.

"You will know life and be acknowledged by it according to your degree of transparency–your capacity, that is, to vanish as an end and to remain purely as a means.” - Dag Hammarskjold

  • Last year's post for St Ignatius is here
  • A selection of previous posts on St Ignatius here 
  • and here
  • A selection of prayers from the British Jesuits here
The Examen

Ignatius left his Society two spiritual legacies: The Daily Examen, a short period of daily reflection and the Spiritual Exercises. St. Ignatius believed that he received the examen as a gift from God that not only enriched his own Christian life but was meant to be shared with others. 

The examen was a "method," a way to seek and find God in all things and to gain the freedom to let God's will be done on earth.

The Examen traditionally has five steps:
  • Recall you are in the presence of God. No matter where you are, you are a creature in the midst of creation and the Creator who called you forth is concerned for you.

  • Give thanks to God for favors received. Pause and spend a moment looking at this day's gifts. Take stock of what you received and gave. Notice these clues that guide living.

  • Ask for awareness of the Holy Spirit's aid. Before you explore the mystery of the human heart, ask to receive the Holy Spirit so that you can look upon your actions and motives with honesty and patience. The Spirit gives a freedom to look upon yourself without condemnation and without complacency and thus be open to growth.

  • Now examine how you are living this day. Recalling the events of your day, explore the context of your actions. Review the day, hour by hour, searching for the internal events of your life. Look through the hours to see your interaction with what was before you. Ask what you were involved in and who you were with, and review your hopes and hesitations. What moved you to act the way you did?

  • Pray words of reconciliation and resolve. Having reviewed this day of your life, look upon yourself with compassion and see your need for God and try to realize God's manifestations of concern for you. Express sorrow for sin, give thanks for grace, and praise God for the times you responded in ways that allowed you to better see God's life.

 More information and resources on The Spiritual Exercises of St Ignatius can be obtained from here and here and here.

Saint Ignatius’s motto was “Ite, inflammate omnia.” - “Go set the world aflame” – his parting words to Francis Xavier who was carrying the Gospel to the East.

 My friend Fr John Predmore SJ has a blog fittingly called Ignatian Spirituality : Set the World Ablaze here.

John is shortly to set off for a new post carrying the Gospel to the East as Pastor to Latin rite Catholics in Amman, Jordan and there will be plenty of news and photos to look forward to. Here is a post on his inaugural trip there earlier in July from his other blog To The Frontier.Please keep him in your prayers.

                                                                           Image source

Video : These Alone Are Enough For Me by Dan Schutte

based on the Suscipe prayer by St. Ignatius of Loyola.

Great Ignatius pictograph above found on an office wall at St. Ignatius High School in Cleveland, Ohio, depicting his maxim Finding God in All Things.

Margaret Silf has a great article on St Ignatius titled  An Imperfect Pilgrim in America magazine.

There is still time to download a FREE copy of her new e .book on Ignatius, Just Call Me Lopez thanks to the kindness of Loyola Press.

 Further Details here.
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