"Go Out to the World and Spread the Good News"

"Go Out to the World and Spread the Good News"
Posted on 01/26/2018
“Go Out to the World and Spread the Good News” 

The Society of Jesus has a strong commitment to education, always has.  But the Society also is a missionary order.  St. Francis Xavier, one of St. Ignatius Loyola’s closest friends and an original founding companion of the Society of Jesus, is most honored by the Catholic Church, other Christian churches, and the Jesuit order for him missionary accomplishments particularly in India, Southeast Asia, and Japan.

Last night a group of St. John’s Jesuit faculty and staff gathered in our McQuade Theater to view the film Silence from the book of this name by the great Japanese Catholic writer Shusako Endo. The movie premiered in Vatican City last November 29th with Pope Francis in attendance. These “Ignatian Evenings” are geared to help faculty and staff deepen their understanding of the Society of Jesus’ mission.

The film begins in Portugal with two young Portuguese Jesuit priests traveling to feudal Japan. In 1549, Xavier began the first Christian mission in Japan; historians rank him among the greatest missionaries in Christian history But in the 17th century Japan was hostile to the successful Christian Church and many Jesuit priests were martyred as they were bringing the Gospel message of Christ to Japan.  The film described the challenges to these young priest’s faith that their mission to  Japan presented them.  

Years ago, I remember one of the booklets describing the nature of a Jesuit school was called “Go Out to the World and Spread the Good News.”  An important part of the mission of all Jesuit schools is foreign service.  As a part of the Society of Jesus’ worldwide apostolate, St. John’s Jesuit has a strong Christian foreign service program.

“And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love surpasses knowledge.” (Ephesians 3:17-19) St. John Berchmans, pray for us.  St. Ignatius, pray for us.  

St. John’s Jesuit closed yesterday, a threat was made to our school community.  This morning the St. John’s Jesuit community will gather in the St. John Berchmans Chapel and give thanks to God for a successful outcome to yesterday’s events. We will use the prayer below. 

Lord, in John’s gospel, Jesus says, “The thief only comes only to steal, to kill, to destroy; I have come that all may have life, and have it in all its fullness.” (John 10:10)

Our world is filled with events and situations that can cause great fear and anxiety. 

It’s easy to become overwhelmed and live imprisoned by fear. You want us to let go of fear and to live life to the fullest! 

All that we have and  are is Your gift, protected by Your love. We give thanks for this new day and for all who helped St. John’s Jesuit work through yesterday’s threat.  We pray for the person who caused yesterday’s events. 

We pray in the name of St. John Berchmans, St. Ignatius Loyola, and in the name of Your Son, Jesus Christ.
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