Europe

The JECSE Formators Conference 2019 brought together the formators of Jesuit Schools across Europe in Manresa, Dublin, at the end of March. This wonderful experience aimed at enriching all the participants, forming the teachers on identity and mission. It was also an opportunity to remind everyone of the value of the Jesuit European Committee for Primary and Secondary Education as a platform for widening perspective while building a common purpose.There were representatives from ten different...
The Jesuit Refugee Service (JRS) has launched a campaign on 10 April to remind voters of the power they have in the upcoming European Parliamentary elections to ensure protection for the rights of asylum seekers and refugees. Using the hashtag format of social media, they are calling the campaign #ThePowerofVote.What makes the campaign all the more urgent is the serious threat to EU common values and principles in recent times. A shift in the culture has meant that there is now in some parts of...
  Mohammed, a refugee from Egypt, gives a present to the President of the Italian Republic Sergio Mattarella (Photo: Centro Astalli).
In a time when the gates of Europe seem closed to people in need of protection, JRS Italy is opening a new reception and integration centre for asylum seekers and refugees.The idea of opening a new centre was inspired by Pope Francis’ appeal to open the houses of religious congregations to host refugees on the occasion of his visit to JRS Italy in 2013.The new centre bears the name of Matteo Ricci, a Jesuit who dedicated his life to putting himself in other people’s shoes and looking for the...
God continues to call young people today to discover that it is possible to live a consecrated life. This year 42 young people knocked on the doors of ten Jesuit novitiates in Europe.Each one of them has followed a different journey, some have known the Society of Jesus since childhood in Jesuit schools and churches, others have collaborated with social and pastoral works, and others have simply approached the Society in the different provinces from their web pages.However, all of them have in...
Pat Riordan SJ with Nicolette Busuttil (r)
Dr Patrick Riordan SJ spoke last week at the Westminster Justice and Peace annual day on human rights. Taking the theme of ‘Human Rights in the Post-Brexit era’,  Pat was one of three key speakers with Julie Ward MEP and Nicolette Busuttil from JRS.  The theme of the day was chosen because of the uncertain transition period as Britain leaves the EU, with particular reference to the migrant and refugee phenomenon. Two scenarios are possible as Britain leaves the EU, firstly that...
Pope Francis has challenged Europe and especially European Catholics not to go down the route of ‘exclusivism and cultural fortification’ when challenged with the task of welcoming refugees.  Speaking at a meeting with the directors of migrant and refugee services from the bishops’ conferences of Europe, Francis was particularly sad when he saw these negative reactions in Catholic communities. “I will not hide my concern about the signs of intolerance, discrimination and xenophobia that...
Europe is looking for a new vision, says Fr Janin
The newly appointed President of the Conference of European Jesuit Provincials (CEP) has said that he believes that Europe is at “a key moment in its history” and that the Society of Jesus has a valuable role in helping the continent to rediscover its roots.Fr Franck Janin SJ, who is currently the Provincial of the Jesuits in South Belgium and Luxembourg, was speaking shortly after the Curia in Rome announced his appointment. He will replace Irish Jesuit, Fr John Dardis SJ, who was...
Some of the 13 novices from Northern Belgium, Ireland, The Netherlands and United Kingdom
The Jesuit novices who are normally based at the novitiate in Birmingham visited the Low Countries recently, on a trip that gave them an insight into the scope of the international Society. Novices from Britain, Ireland, Flanders and the Netherlands make up the international community at Manresa House; and since the September to December Study period is the longest period inside the novitiate itself, they embarked upon a trip to (North) Belgium and the Netherlands, to visit a variety of Jesuit...
Credit: Niccoló Caratini via Flickr Creative Commons
The Autumn edition of The Way spirituality journal is out nowThere is a range of interesting content in the current special edition of the The Way: The Spirit of Europe Today which focuses on Europe and the spirituality of Brexit.  Order your copy here. Frank Turner SJ  The Role of Europe in the Last Three PapaciesIn Francis, Benedict XVI and John-Paul II, the Roman Catholic Church has experienced three very different Popes. Each, though, has spoken repeatedly about the...
Photo of Accrington Pals/Photo of jobseeker in Burnley
The town of Accrington, home to over 300 men who were killed on the first day of the Battle of the Somme, is an example of a community who were defenceless against the juggernaut that was World War I. 8 miles north-east and 100 years later, we find an example of a community that is just as vulnerable to a new force but has responded in a different way. The Jesuits in Britain’s Provincial Fr Dermot Preston reflects on last week’s referendum result through the lens of his hometown of Burnley....

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