X
UCA News

World

Pope Francis reflects on Jesuit founder's failed dreams

Pontiff says the cannonball that wounded Ignatius of Loyola 500 years ago changed the the course of the world

UCA News reporter

UCA News reporter

Published: May 24, 2021 09:13 AM GMT

Updated: May 24, 2021 09:14 AM GMT

Pope Francis reflects on Jesuit founder's failed dreams

A 16th century painting of St. Ignatius of Loyola in armor. 

Pope Francis has joined the prayer program marking the 500th anniversary of the conversion of St. Ignatius of Loyola, who founded the Jesuit society.

Pope Francis, a Jesuit, said the cannonball that wounded Ignatius of Loyola 500 years ago in Pamplona shattered the worldly dreams of St. Ignatius “in an instant.”

“But it changed the course of his life and the course of the world,” he said in a May 23 video message.

“It seems small things can be important. That cannonball also meant that Ignatius failed in the dreams he had for his life. But God had a bigger dream for him,” the Catholic leader said.

The video message was telecast during a program named “Pilgrims with Ignatius” to mark the point in the life of the saint that eventually led to the foundation of the Society of Jesus.

Jesuit Superior General Father Arturo Sosa and other leading Jesuits worldwide shared their experiences at the program.

Pope Francis said Ignatius’ conversion that began in Pamplona continued for his whole life

Ignatius was a soldier and entertained dreams of fame and glory. But his military career abruptly ended on May 20, 1521, when a cannonball broke his right leg during a war in the northern Spanish city of Pamplona.

During the boring weeks of recuperation in the Castle of Loyola, the only two books available to him to read were a book on the lives of Christ and another on lives of saints.

Reading them led to him to a spiritual stirring, which prompted him to join a Benedictine monastery after recovery.

In 1522, he spent 11 months living inside a cave in Manresa, where he wrote the Spiritual Exercises, the base of the spirituality he developed.
Thank you. You are now signed up to Daily newsletter

Pope Francis said Ignatius’ conversion that began in Pamplona continued for his whole life. “He converted throughout his life, day after day” and it means “that throughout his life he put Christ at the center.”

Jesuits opened the Ignatian Year on May 20 with Archbishop Francisco Pérez González of Pamplona leading a Mass at his cathedral. Jesuit Superior Father Sosa joined the Mass telecast online.

The Ignatian Year will include the 400th anniversary of St. Ignatius’ canonization, which falls on March 12, 2022. A special Mass is planned at the Church of the Gesù in Rome to mark the event.

The Ignatian Year will end on July 31, 2022, the saint’s feast day.

Also Read

UCA News Podcast
UCAN Ad
slavery-in-asia
 
The Pontificate - Contribute to help UCA News
The Pontificate - Contribute to help UCA News
UCA News Catholic Dioceses in Asia
UCA News Catholic Dioceses in Asia
UCA News Catholic Dioceses in Asia