The Jesuits want more — more faith, more work, more justice, more truth, more hope, more for the love of Christ. As Canadian Jesuit Father Bert Foliot celebrated 50 years in the Society of Jesus, he also laid out what he felt can be asked of Jesuits.
“We want you to demand that we help you to meet Jesus of Nazareth. That’s what we want you to demand of us,” Fr. Foliot said. “We want you to demand that we be faithful to the tradition and interpret it in ways that can be understood in our secular time. We want you to demand that we be people who can open up a respect for creation so that we can be in right relation with creation.”
The Jesuits are celebrating 400 of years in Canada, a milestone commemorated during a recent dinner and awards ceremony in early April dedicated to the core Jesuit value of more — which, in the traditional language of St. Ignatius of Loyola, Jesuits call “the magis.”
If Jesuits are to lead the lives they are called to, they need lay people to constantly demand every dimension of Jesuit ministry, said Fr. Foliot. Over the last 50 years, Fr. Foliot has been a pastor at big-city parishes, a missionary in Northern Ontario and now serves as rector at Regis College, the Jesuit graduate faculty of theology at the University of Toronto.
“I don’t know if you know the power of lay people to call forth the priesthood in us,” Fr. Foliot said.
During the dinner on April 11, the Jesuits presented an award to Peter Warrian and Margaret Hovanec, a Toronto couple behind the Lupina Foundation. The foundation funds the Lupina Centre for Spirituality, Healthcare and Ethics at Regis College,
“What we receive from the Jesuits wildly exceeds anything we can contribute to the Society of Jesus,” said Warrian, an entrepreneur and former chief economist for the Province of Ontario.
Fr. Foliot was one of four Jesuits celebrating 50 years of Jesuit life at the 2012 Provincial’s Dinner. Jesuit Brother Bob Finlay, Fathers Doug McCarthy and Michael Stogre all entered the novitiate in 1962.