All Things Jesuit

All Things Jesuit connects faculty and staff with current news about Jesuit education, as well several resources for understanding the Ignatian tradition. A collaboration between The Commons and Mission & Ministry, this section covers Jesuit initiatives on SU's campus as well as news and information from the wider community of Jesuit higher education.


You may have heard that Pope Francis was in the United States recently. 

The visit by Pope Francis, the first ever Jesuit pope, captivated the nation and particularly Jesuit institutions such as ours. Here are some ways SU experienced the papal visit and how it will be a gift that keeps on giving in the weeks and months ahead.

Before the visit  

In anticipation of Pope Francis' visit two SU Jesuits (named Patrick, no less) authored articles on the significance of his papacy for America Magazine. Pat Howell, S.J., Distinguished Professor in the Institute for Catholic Thought and Culture (ICTC) wrote Pope Francis Meets the American Catholic Church, and Pat Kelly, S.J., penned An Examen in the Spirit of Pope Francis.

By the way, Fathers Howell and Kelly will speak on the impact of Pope Francis on our nation and university. Sponsored by the Office of Jesuit Mission and Identity as part of the "Moment for Mission" Lunch Series 2015-16, the event will take place 12:15-1:30 p.m. on Monday, Oct. 12, in Chardin 142. RSVP to Lunch is provided.

During the visit  

Two well-attended campus events were held on Sept. 24: a viewing and dialogue on the pope's historic address to the joint session of Congress (in Pigott Auditorium); and an interfaith response to Laudato Si', the pope's encyclical on climate change (in the Chapel of St. Ignatius). 

FlatFranciswithChiefSeattle_300_2SU Jesuits were active sharing their thoughts on the pope with local media. President Stephen Sundborg, S.J., and Tom Lucas, rector of the Arrupe Jesuit Community offered commentary on the pope's visit, in interviews with such outlets as KING 5, Northwest Cable News and KIRO.

One of Father Sundborg's interviews with KING 5, can be seen here. Of Francis' historic trip, Father Sundborg said he expected the pope to "to bring the voice of the poor to the centers of power." In this audio clip, Father Lucas speaks with KIRO's Dave Ross about the canonization of Father Junipero Serra, which took place as part of the pope's visit to the U.S. Father Serra is the first saint to be canonized on American soil. 

In National Catholic Reporter, Carmen Gonzalez of the School of Law took up Laudato Si' in a column titled " UN goals fall short of Francis' vision." 

Meanwhile, over in the comparatively wacky world of social media, lots of SU folks were getting into the spirit of Pope Francis' visit in a number of ways. Many members of the SU community shared thoughts on Jesuit education as part of the Association of Jesuit Colleges and University's #Jesuiteducated series of reflections. (And for those who didn't have a chance to see it at the President's Welcome, SU students and alumni are featured in this video on what it means to be Jesuit educated at SU

Others took part in the Flat Francis contest. Some posed with cut-outs of the pope; others placed Flat Francis in notable environments. Pictured here is a photo from Margaret Moore, senior administrative assistant in the Arrupe Jesuit Community, in which she introduced Francis to our city's and university's namesake. 

Marketing Communications student interns Cailin Chien and Izzy Gardon created a Buzzfeed that features "16 Celebrities Who Are #JesuitEducated."

Up ahead…

Just because the pope has gone back to Rome doesn't mean the SU community is done talking about him. Oh, we're just getting started! 

In addition to the aforementioned Oct. 12 event with Fathers Howell and Kelly, there will be many other opportunities throughout the academic year to engage with topics related to the pope. Here's a couple. 

  • Inspired by the pope's encyclical Laudato Si', this year's Catholic Heritage Lectures and related programming will follow the movements of the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius. Pat Howell, S.J., and Ilia Delio, O.S.M., will present lectures on the encyclical in October. The full schedule can be found at the Institute for Catholic Thought and Culture

SU grad featured in Washington Post

WashingtonPost_JVC_300Camille Kammer, '15, is featured in the Sept. 15 Washington Post  article, "A Church in the Streets." Anticipating Pope Francis' visit to the United States this month, the article highlights the Jesuit Volunteer Corps community of which Kammer is a part, drawing parallels between the Jesuit pope's teachings and JVC's social justice mission. 

Kammer graduated in June with a degree in history. While at SU, she served as a campus minister for faith formation. She delivered the benediction at Commencement.

Visit The Washington Post to read the article, which offers a behind-the-scenes look at the life of Kammer and her five Jesuit Volunteer community mates.

Also, check out "Jesuit schools thrive in US ahead of Pope Francis' trip" in USA Today as well as the Association of Jesuit Colleges and Universities' #JesuitEducated series

Spoiler alert: At this Friday's President's Welcome (Sept. 18), you may see a video on what Jesuit education means at Seattle University...

(Photo: The Washington Post)

Fearless leader

Tom Lucas, S.J., rector of the Arrupe Jesuit Community, delivered the following homily on the Feast of St. Ignatius, July 31.  

At the beginning of this liturgy, and of the conference on Ignatian Leadership (sponsored by Magis) many of you are attending today, I had the pleasure of introducing Fr. Scott Santarosa, the Provincial of the Oregon-and soon to be entire west coast-Province. Hearkening back to too many hours of watching Rocky and Bullwinkle as a warped young child, I channeled Boris and Natasha when I called him our "fearless leader."

Today, on the context of the feast of St. Ignatius, it seems to me that fearless leadership is something we might continue to reflect upon. Oceans of ink and palavers of conferences have tried to understand the complex man who is the founder of our shared tradition.  

Playboy. Courtier. Adverturer. Justice of the Peace. Soldier.

Invalid. Handicapped. Frustrated. Enlightened.

Road Warrior. Would-be heathen converter. Grammar schooler at 30.

Prisoner of the Inquisition. Twice. Divinity Student.

Magnetic pole attracting talented people.

Priest. Friend of the Poor. Reformer. Founder.

Administrator. Letter writer, Dreamer. Mystic.

Perhaps truest of all, Fearless Leader.

That Ignatius was fearless, there can be no doubt. We know about his exploits as a soldier, the gruesome surgeries he willingly underwent to straighten his deformed leg. Less evident, perhaps, was his fearless plunge into the dark, in his long convalescence at Loyola and at the Cave at Manresa. He went to places he had never known, never imagined: places where deep desire met a profound if unformed willingness to serve.

The process of he underwent, the formation of what that service would be appears to us like a reckless adventure: an abortive trip to the Holy Land, a humiliating return to elementary school, dust-ups with the Inquisition. Hobbling off from Spain to Paris, where studies were demanding, and friends, at least at first, were few. Yet companions were attracted to him, broke bread with him, and the desire began to take concrete form: let us work for the glory of God and the good of souls. Those who broke bread, companions, became a Company.

Tom Lucas, S.J., is rector of the Arrupe Jesuit Community at Seattle University.

Coming to Rome, Ignatius and his priestly companions leapt into the belly of the unreformed beast. He proposed to the organizational church a radical new model of religious activity that flew in the face of a thousand years of tradition. No choir. No stability. No fixed incomes. Willing to try anything, to go anywhere, to risk everything, and to fail often, Ignatius and his companions, Jesuits and lay people both, were lit up by a Pentecostal fire that seems as reckless to us today as it appeared to much of the hierarchy of his own times. 

So where did that fearlessness come from? Critics-there were, and are many-said it was arrogance. Way too smart for their own good, too crafty, too, dare I say it, too Jesuitical?

You can learn a lot from reading other people's mail. Over and again, in 6800 letters, in the midst of a million administrative details, the refrain sounds: let us work in love for the glory of God, the greater glory of God, and the good of souls. Let our way of proceeding be a way of service, rooted and grounded in love. 

Ignatius experienced that love during his agonizing convalescence at Loyola, in the lucid vision of the mystery of God at Manresa and the confirming vision of Christ carrying his cross at La Storta. He experienced it at the altar, shedding floods of tears as he reflected on God's goodness and his own unworthiness. He experienced that love in the brothers and colleagues who surrounded him, challenged him, needed him to be that love for them. It isn't about learning, or administrative ability or cunning. It's all about the experience of the mercy of God, as Pope Francis never tires to reminding us, and the hope that mercy plants in our hearts.  

Of the 6,800 letters of St. Ignatius, one stands out for me. Some six months before his death, Ignatius wrote to Francis Borgia in Spain Ignatius details a whole series of recent challenges and disasters he and the company have been experiencing. He ends: "Pazienza:  patience. Because of the treasure of hopes we hold, everything is as nothing. God who has given us hope will not confound us." 

As it was in the beginning, is now and ever shall be. "God who has given us hope will not confound us."

Leading, the Ignatian way


ScottSantaRosa_350Sponsored by Magis: Alumni Living the Mission, the Ignatian Leadership Conference takes place Friday, July 31, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. The conference is an opportunity to explore the concept of Ignatian leadership and how to apply and integrate Jesuit values and Ignatian practices into your personal and professional life. Scott Santarosa, S.J., provincial of the Oregon Province of the Society of Jesus ( left ), will serve as keynote speaker. Following are some questions about the conference with answers provided by Maria Ochoa, assistant director of Magis. 

Who would this conference appeal to?    

The conference is for anyone interested in learning about Ignatian Leadership. It may be of interest to alumni who desire a fresh and integrated perspective on leadership; anyone who works in any type of Ignatian/Jesuit institution; someone who is in need of some spiritual tools for navigating a secular work environment; and/or a person who is looking for an integrated professional and spiritual development opportunity. All are welcome to attend!

About how many attendees are expected?

We are expecting 100-120 attendees. 

Among those attendees who have already registered, what sorts of professions/walks of life are represented?    

We have individuals from the following organizations represented: CARE USA, Spacelabs Healthcare, Seattle University, Starbucks, The Boeing Company, Providence Health & Services, Gonzaga University, Spiritual Exercises in Everyday Life, various local Catholic Schools and Parishes, WA Office of the Insurance Commissioner, Salal Credit Union, Limeade, Nordstrom, Seattle Police Department, City of Redmond, Northwest Parkinson's Foundation, and more.  

What inspired the conference?     

Over the last few years, Magis has been involved primarily in offering the Contemplative Leaders in Action alumni leadership program (CLA). This two-year, cohort based program has touched the lives of   more than 100 alumni and mentors by teaching and forming young adult leaders ages 25-39 the foundations and practices of Ignatian Leadership. We learned that many in the alumni community beyond CLA are also desiring a way to integrate their spirituality and faith into the professional and personal spheres of life. In response, we thought that by hosting a conference on the topic of Ignatian Leadership, we might provide an opportunity for the larger community to learn and practice this leadership approach.    

In addition to the provincial's keynote address by the provincial, what other activities will be included?   

The day will include table conversations, access to two workshops from a variety of Ignatian leaders, an optional mass celebrating the feast day of St. Ignatius being held at the Chapel of St. Ignatius-concelebrated by Fr. Santarosa and Tom Lucas, S.J., rector of the SU Jesuit Community-and a networking social hosted at the end of the day. The conference also includes continental breakfast, lunch, parking and materials. 

Anything else we should know about the conference?     

We are almost sold out, so register as soon as possible if you are interested! Clock hours will also be available through the Seattle U College of Education.   

For more information about the conference, visit Ignatian Leadership.

One other note: Because of the conference and the absence of many Jesuits, the Arrupe House's annual Ignatius Day breakfast, ordinarily held on the Feast of St. Ignatius, will be postponed until fall quarter. Stay tuned for more information.

Father Ely reflects

As President Stephen Sundborg, S.J., announced in March, Peter Ely, S.J., will step down at the end of this month as vice president for Mission and Ministry.

"Peter has done a terrific job serving as vice president," Father Sundborg wrote. "Since 2009 he has led Mission and Ministry through a period of growth and positive change. Under his leadership, Seattle University has strengthened its commitment to its Jesuit Catholic character while at the same time fostering a deeper, more inclusive dialogue with other faith traditions. Most importantly, Peter has built a dedicated and talented team that plays a vital role in helping us carry out the mission."

Here, Father Ely shares his thoughts on his six years as vice president and what's next.

On stepping down as VP for Mission and Ministry:  

In many ways I'm sorry to be leaving this position. It has been a good six years serving as coordinator of a wonderful team. But I'm eager to move toward a different kind of engagement with the university's mission, not as an administrator but as a teacher. Mission and Ministry is all about nourishing the roots of our mission. That means the Jesuit and Catholic roots. It also means appealing to the deep inspiration people bring to their work at the university from a variety of traditions. This is what Fr. Steve calls "the soul of the university." Everyone working in the university, all of our governing and advising boards, our benefactors and friends and our students-all of us together are responsible for the mission. We do it in different ways. 

On what has brought him the most satisfaction in his six years as vice president:  

Surely at the top of the list is working with such a committed team serPeterEly_450 desire that our SU community has to enter more deeply into the roots of our mission. People from the outside observing us-including accreditation bodies which can be very critical-commend us for the widespread understanding and embrace of the University's mission. Because people embrace the mission they want to understand it more deeply. That is deeply satisfying to me.

On what he will be doing next:  

I will teach half-time in the Theology and Religious Studies Department and continue to direct the Arrupe Seminar and the Interreligious Dialogue Initiative. I look forward also to increasing my time for deep reading and some scholarly research projects underway.

Other thoughts:  

It has been an honor and privilege to serve as vice president for Mission and Ministry. It is time to move on and be engaged in different ways. I move on with great confidence in Joe Orlando's ability to lead the division for this next year. Joe has been assistant vice president during my whole time as VP. He is ready to take over. I also have confidence in the people serving in Mission and Ministry. They are highly qualified professionals. They understand our mission from the inside and are committed to it.

A reception to thank Father Ely will be held 3:30-4:30 p.m. on Thursday, June 11, in Tekakwitha Collegium (Student Center, first floor).

Big meeting in Melbourne

This July President Stephen Sundborg, S.J., will join the presidents of Jesuit higher education institutions and the directors of other Jesuit institutions from around the world for a gathering titled "Expanding the Jesuit Higher Education Network: Collaborations for Social Justice."

Melbourne_300Upwards of 300 leaders are expected at the three-day conference, which takes place at Catholic University of Australia in Melbourne. The lead organizer for the gathering is Michael Garanzini, S.J., secretary for higher education for the Society of Jesus worldwide and outgoing Loyola University Chicago president.

The conference will focus on the Jesuit institutions' shared social justice mission, international Jesuit collaborations and future collaborative opportunities. Adolfo Nicolas, S.J., superior general of the Society of Jesus, will deliver remarks by video.

The last time presidents and directors met like this was in 2010 in Mexico City. The theme of that gathering was "Networking Jesuit Higher Education for the Globalizing World: Shaping the Future for a Humane, Just, Sustainable Globe."

You can learn more about the upcoming conference here.

Alpha Sigma Nu celebrates a century

Seattle University's newest Alpha Sigma Nu inductees were announced by President Stephen Sundborg, S.J., last week. Alpha Sigma Nu, the Jesuit honor society, is celebrating its 100th anniversary this year. You can click on the video below for a nice history lesson on the organization. 

Odds and Ends

There's lots of Jesuit stuff in the air these days. Here's just a few news items as well as some opportunities to engage with Jesuit higher education and Ignatian spirituality and service.

JVEncorpsIntentional service! Are you over 50 years young and looking for a transformative way to engage in service? Jesuit Volunteer EnCorps (JV EnCorps), an ecumenical program of JVC Northwest, might be just what you're looking for. JVC EnCorps is a multifaceted opportunity for value-centered service, community and spiritual formation for older adults committed to social and ecological justice. 

During their 10 months of part-time volunteer service, participants meet together regularly in community, deepen their spirituality and explore the values of simple living and social and ecological justice. The priority application deadline is June 30. For more information, call (206) 305-8911 or visit  to apply.

For(e) the Greater Glory of God: There's your Jedi masters...and then there's your Jesuit-educated masters. Thanks to Pat Howell, S.J., distinguished professor in the Institute for Catholic Thought and Culture, for bringing it to our attention that 2015 Masters Champion Jordan Spieth is a graduate of Jesuit College Preparatory School in Dallas. Articles on Spieth's Jesuit connection can be found at Catholic Register and Jesuits in Ireland, the latter of which includes a handwritten note he wrote to a donor who provided funding for a scholarship Spieth received while attending the school.  

Conversations_200Join the conversation. By now you should have received a copy of the latest " Conversations on Jesuit Higher Education" magazine. The spring edition includes among other features an article by Tom Lucas, S.J., professor of art and rector of the Arrupe Jesuit community, on "The Spiritual Exercises and Art." Readers will also recognize the icon from our chapel that graces the magazine's cover. 

The Office of Jesuit Mission and Identity is hosting a conversation on the magazine, "The Spirituality of a University: What Difference Does It Make?" from noon to 1:15 p.m. on Monday, May 4, noon-1:15 p.m., in Hunthausen 110. The discussion will include Darrell Goodwin, dean of students; Camille Kammer, Class of 2015 history major; Brooke Rufo-Hill, director of Magis: Alumni Living the Mission; and Christina Roberts, associate professor of English and director of Women and Gender Studies. A light lunch will be served. To RSVP, please e-mail

Day of Service: Seattle University's Alumni Association and Magis: Alumni Living the Mission invite you to serve in this year's fourth annual National Jesuit Alumni Day of Service on Saturday, April 25. Join Seattle University alumni and alumni of other Jesuit colleges and universities in fulfilling our shared Jesuit mission, which is rooted in service, by participating in a volunteer project at one of several service sites. Learn more and register here

In case you missed it…Our very own Dave Anderson, S.J., and Frank Case, S.J., who previously served in many capacities at SU, were recently profiled for their respective roles as chaplains for the SU and Gonzaga men's basketball teams.

Wing and a prayer

A big thanks to Jerry Cobb, S.J., special assistant to the president, for sending in these shots taken in the Chapel of St. Ignatius last week. For Father Cobb, the ducks' appearance in the chapel made perfect sense. He explains:

"Steven Holl designed the Chapel of St Ignatius with the idea of 'aquaeous space,' so that the floor would appear to be water. He also designed the carpet with the blue of the 'River Cardoner' (a place of deep signficance in St. Ignatius' spiritual journey) flowing through the center of (it). To me it is amazing that our two ducks felt comfortable enough to leave the reflection pool and waddle into the chapel and plunk themselves down right on the blue painted part of the carpet!"

ducks1_400vertical.jpg ducks2_400vertical

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