Sunday, January 20, 2008

Benedict Speaks to the Jesuits

The Jesuits have just elected a successor to Fr.Peter-Hans Kolvenbach as Superior General of their society: Adolfo Nicolas.

Prior to the election the Holy Father had written to the Jesuits, gathered in convocation in Rome:

"I heartily hope," said the Holy Father, "that the present Congregation affirms with clarity the authentic charism of the founder so as to encourage all Jesuits to promote true and healthy Catholic doctrine.

"It could prove extremely useful that the General Congregation reaffirm, in the spirit of St. Ignatius, its own total adhesion to Catholic doctrine, in particular on those neuralgic points which today are strongly attacked by secular culture, as for example the relationship between Christ and religions; some aspects of the theology of liberation; and various points of sexual morality, especially as regards the indissolubility of marriage and the pastoral care of homosexual persons."

The General Curia of the Jesuits responded to the papal letter in a press statement stating that the General Congregation intends "to respond with sincerity to the invitations and petitions of the Holy Father." "The General Congregation will dedicate to these all due attention during its work session," continued the note, "a considerable part of which will be dedicated precisely to the topics of identity and mission of the Jesuits and of religious and apostolic obedience, in particular of obedience to the Pope."

Our earnest prayer for the Jesuits is that their charism of fidelity to the Pope be reaffirmed. Only in that way will the Jesuits stop the rapidly diminishing number of members of the world’s largest order of religious men

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