Celebrating the Ignatian Year

UPCOMING PROGRAMS

Ascending with Ignatius At-Home Retreat 
This program will take place during the Easter season with an opportunity for shared prayer and reflection on the following dates: April 27, May 11 and May 25. Stay tuned and contact Marcia Leous for more information: (216) 932-0617. 

RESOURCES

"Pray As You Go"
"Pray As You Go" is a daily prayer website, podcast and app that is operated by the Jesuits in the United Kingdom. Prayer opportunities are available on the website: pray-as-you-go.org/. Take a few moments to appreciate the music, scripture passages, reflection questions and solitude that accompany each short daily podcast, especially during these fifty days of the Church’s Easter season...You won't regret it!

loyolapress.com
What do we mean when we say that "Christians are Easter people"? What does it mean to "live Easter-ly"? Watch a one minute video and read a brief reflection addressing these questions here >

These resources are sponsored by Loyola Press, a not-for-profit Catholic publishing ministry of the Midwest Province of the Society of Jesus. Check out the many other Loyola Press free resources offered to lead individuals and families to Jesus through an Ignatian lens at loyolapress.com.

MAY REFLECTION

By Brother Sean Barry, SJ
First Companions and Friendship

Last month, we followed Ignatius as he began formal studies in theology. These studies eventually led him to the University of Paris, where he worked towards a master's degree in theology from the Collège de Sainte-Barbe. While there, Ignatius became roommates with Francis Xavier and Peter Faber.

This trio later became known as the First Companions. Both Xavier and Faber made the Spiritual Exercises under the direction of Ignatius, and they were the first ones who made the retreat to remain with Ignatius. Others joined them later, though the Society of Jesus really began with these three.

Ignatius’ close bonds with these two men bespeaks an important part of our own spiritual lives. We need friendships that bring us closer to God. Good friends allow us to be ourselves and challenge us to become better. So often, we think about having friends based on common interests or employment. How often do we think about how our friends can nourish our spiritual life?

Such friends can help draw us closer to God and we can help others in their journey of faith. Ignatius stated that there was nobody more skilled at giving the Spiritual Exercises than Faber, high praise from the man who created them. Likewise, he helped Xavier become more prayerful and focus on how he could spend his life to give God greater glory and honor more effectively.

Another key element of this relationship is that the three were peers, even though Ignatius was notably older than the other two. Though we can learn from a mentor, and others can approach us to learn from us, we need peers we walk alongside in the journey of faith. With peers, we can both share and receive advice more easily and spur each other on to growth.

Points for Reflection:
•  Who are people with whom you share your spiritual life?    
•  When do you take time for spiritual conversation with others?
•  What are some moments when someone helped you in your faith life or you helped another?