Jesuit Father Mitch Pacwa, the host of “EWTN Live,” recently interviewed Jesuit Father John Padberg, noted historian and director of the Institute of Jesuit Sources based in Saint Louis, Mis., in which he speaks at length about the Society of Jesus, it’s foundation and history.
“I got a chance to go to the Institute that you have up in Saint Louis and see all this material, but so little of it is that well known,” said Fr. Pacwa. “I thought that this might be a great chance to let the institute and the books you make available on spirituality and the history of the Jesuits a little bit better known.”
The segment, which runs almost an hour, features many tidbits of Jesuit history, including:
- Jesuits opened the first schools for the laity.
- Jesuits invented the use of grade levels, which advanced students by testing.
- Jesuits created the school system by founding multiple schools for the laity.
- Blessed Peter Faber was one of the first ecumenicists, working with Protestants soon after the Reformation.
- The Jesuits are the only religious order founded by 10 University graduates.
- St. Francis Xavier was one of the first missionaries to Asia.
- A Jesuit named Ippolito Desideri was the first European missionary to successfully understand and study the Tibetian language and culture.