Archive for May, 2011

Jesuit Comments on the Christian Response to Osama bin Laden's Death

martinAs word got out that Osama bin Laden had been killed by a Navy SEAL strike team in Pakistan, television and the Internet quickly began to feature images of spontaneous celebrations outside the White House and at ground zero in New York.

Just as quickly, blogs and social media pages such as Facebook began to rage with debates: about the morality of bin Laden’s killing and how it was accomplished and about the appropriateness of the celebratory atmosphere. Others questioned the meaning of the “justice” described by President Barack Obama in announcing bin Laden’s death.

In one of the Catholic blog discussions, Jesuit Father James Martin, culture editor of the Jesuit magazine, America, captured some of the more charitable threads of the Internet debate:

“The Christian is not simply in favor of life for the unborn, for the innocent, for those we care for, for our families and friends, for our fellow citizens, for our fellow church members or even for those whom we consider good, but for all.  All life is sacred because God created all life.  This is what lies behind Jesus’s most difficult command: “I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you,” wrote Martin.

“As a Christian, I am asked to pray for him and, at some point, forgive him. And that command comes to us from Jesus, a man who was beaten, tortured and killed. That command comes from a man who knows a great deal about suffering. It also comes from God.”

To read Jesuit Father James Martin’s full blog post on the Christian Response, please visit America Magazine’s In All Things blog.

[Catholic News Service]

Jesuit Comments on the Christian Response to Osama bin Laden’s Death

martinAs word got out that Osama bin Laden had been killed by a Navy SEAL strike team in Pakistan, television and the Internet quickly began to feature images of spontaneous celebrations outside the White House and at ground zero in New York.

Just as quickly, blogs and social media pages such as Facebook began to rage with debates: about the morality of bin Laden’s killing and how it was accomplished and about the appropriateness of the celebratory atmosphere. Others questioned the meaning of the “justice” described by President Barack Obama in announcing bin Laden’s death.

In one of the Catholic blog discussions, Jesuit Father James Martin, culture editor of the Jesuit magazine, America, captured some of the more charitable threads of the Internet debate:

“The Christian is not simply in favor of life for the unborn, for the innocent, for those we care for, for our families and friends, for our fellow citizens, for our fellow church members or even for those whom we consider good, but for all.  All life is sacred because God created all life.  This is what lies behind Jesus’s most difficult command: “I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you,” wrote Martin.

“As a Christian, I am asked to pray for him and, at some point, forgive him. And that command comes to us from Jesus, a man who was beaten, tortured and killed. That command comes from a man who knows a great deal about suffering. It also comes from God.”

To read Jesuit Father James Martin’s full blog post on the Christian Response, please visit America Magazine’s In All Things blog.

[Catholic News Service]

Three Boston College Jesuits Offer Personal Perspectives on their Vocation

(L-R) University President William P. Leahy, SJ, Vice President for University Mission and Ministry Jack Butler, SJ, and scholastic Jeremy Zipple ’00, a student in BC’s School of Theology and Ministry, at the March 31 panel discussion “Three Jesuits: Who Do They Say They Are? Personal Perspectives.” (Photo by Justin Knight)

(L-R) University President William P. Leahy, SJ, Vice President for University Mission and Ministry Jack Butler, SJ, and scholastic Jeremy Zipple ’00, a student in BC’s School of Theology and Ministry, at the March 31 panel discussion “Three Jesuits: Who Do They Say They Are? Personal Perspectives.” (Photo by Justin Knight)

Three members of the Boston College Jesuit Community opened their hearts and memories to an overflow audience of more than 200 to discuss their vocations as members of the Society of Jesus.

The discussion held at BC, was entitled “Three Jesuits: Who Do They Say They Are? Personal Perspectives,” and featured Boston College President Jesuit Father William Leahy, Vice President for University Mission and Ministry Jesuit Father Jack Butler, and Jesuit Scholastic Jeremy Zipple, a student in Boston College’s School of Theology and Ministry.

The Jesuit panelists spoke on how their individual journeys to the order began, whether by answering a life-long call to serve God, searching for the right opportunity to share a family’s love and concern for others — or, in one case, through a chance meeting with a BC Jesuit priest.

Father Butler described his time working with the marginalized in society, especially the incarcerated and the elderly, and the courage of such groups in the face of difficulties through faith as formative in his decision to enter the Jesuit Order.

“I fell in love first with a concept – how I saw God working in peoples’ lives,” Butler said. “Jesuits have a way of meeting people where they are, starting a conversation, and letting God do the rest of the work,” he said, calling the work of a Jesuit a process of “together finding God through one another.”

To read the full story on the panel, please visit the Boston College Chronicle.

Jesuit Serves Utah Parish with Faith and Enthusiasm

From left, San Andres parishioners Norman Goddard and Elaine Blasgen, Jesuit Father Joseph Rooney, pastor; and parishioner Tom Blasgen pose with the parish's new processional cross.

From left, San Andres parishioners Norman Goddard and Elaine Blasgen, Jesuit Father Joseph Rooney, pastor; and parishioner Tom Blasgen pose with the parish's new processional cross.

Twenty years ago, Jesuit Father Joseph S. Rooney was a physics professor at Fordham University in the Bronx, and in need of a summer assignment. Volunteering to fill in for priests of the Diocese of Salt Lake City who were away on vacation, Fr. Rooney saw an opportunity to do some apostolic work, but also focus on his hobby of photography.

“My motivation was, give me some apostolic work to do, but my hobby is photography, and this is a pretty state for taking pictures,” he said.

What he saw through the camera lens and in the people he served kept him coming back. During his many summers of service, Rooney served at almost every parish in southern Utah. When it came time for him to retire from teaching physics, Rooney knew exactly where he wanted to serve next; the Oregon Province of Jesuits provincial agreed that Fr. Rooney could help in the Diocese of Salt Lake City for a couple of years.

“And so here it is 14 years later and that ‘couple of years’ is still going,” Fr. Rooney said with a laugh.

Monsignor J. Terrence Fitzgerald, the diocese’s vicar general, said Fr. Rooney brings to Utah not only his faith, but also enthusiasm. “He certainly has the interest and the well-being of the people at heart and is willing to work for them,” he said. “I find him very generous in terms of responding to the needs of the people.”

“There’s a need for a Catholic priest here,” said Fr. Rooney, pointing out that there are 278 registered families in his entire parish, San Andres, which geographically covers an area so large that in contrast there are about 200 Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints wards in the same area; each ward has about 200 families. “There is an apostolic need.”

Although at 77 he is past retirement age, he continues working because “I’m supposed to be, just by my vows as a Jesuit, a person for others,” he said. “Eventually my health will force me out of it, but until that time occurs, there’s no reason why I shouldn’t do it.”

To read the full article about the work of Father Rooney, please visit the Intermountain Catholic.

Path to Priesthood: Why Become a Priest?

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In this video diary entry, Radmar talks about one of the many reasons he wants to be a priest, and how he looks forward to serving the people of God.

“One of my ministry interests is in spiritual direction and, my goodness, I can’t tell you how many times I have accompanied people on their spiritual journey, and it’s that moment of ‘Aha!’…that moment of realization is so amazing to be witness to, that I want to continue helping people recognize their own belovedness in God’s eyes,” says Radmar

As we follow Jao on his journey to ordination in June, leave a comment or ask a question here on the National Jesuit News blog, comment on YouTube or on Twitter via @AskAJesuit and he will respond in an upcoming future video diary. And check back weekly for more video diaries from Jao.