Jesuit Novices Prepare to Pronounce First Vows

After two years of Jesuit formation, which includes living in community and making the Spiritual Exercises in a 30-day retreat, this month second-year U.S. Jesuit novices pronounce their first vows—perpetual vows of poverty, chastity and obedience.

On August 18, New York Province Jesuits Doug Ray and Jason Downer and New England Province Jesuit Timothy Casey will pronounce their first vows in Syracuse, N.Y. In advance of the vow ceremony, the novices reflected on the significance of this event.

Doug Ray said, “Part of me thinks I should be nervous about this … but really what I’m feeling is a great deal of peace … I’m recognizing this is what I’m supposed to be doing with my life.”

Jason Downer expressed his excitement. “This idea of giving my life to Christ and to God and these vows is something that has grown deeper and deeper inside of me over the past two years. I can’t wait, and I’m humbled to be called a Jesuit, men that I’ve looked up to for 15 years of my life.”

Tim Casey felt at peace with vows on the horizon. “Walking with him [Jesus] is our ultimate purpose; it’s why we’re here. It’s what gets us out of bed in the morning. It’s what drives our work.”

For more of Ray, Downer and Casey’s thoughts on first vows, watch the video below.

2 Responses to “Jesuit Novices Prepare to Pronounce First Vows”

  • father peter j murray SJ:

    These were inspiring to me! Jason, I pray you will always treausre your background and use it as you have been doing so far (Go, MCQuaid!)with God’s grace; Tim, I hope that your experience out in the islands(Yap) has “changed you” for life; and will be the springboard for other fine challenges and harvestings; Doug, hope that your prayer & your work will be special helps to you as you move forward on your journey of Faith and vowed commitment.

    It is good to learn, in this my 53rd year as a jesuit, that others walking behind but near to us will carry the torch forward. It’s a comfort!
    Peter Murray SJ

  • father peter j murray SJ:

    These were inspiring to me.

    It is great to learn in my 53rd year as a jesuit that others, young and vigorous and strong in their faith, will follow and are ready to carry the torch forward. Boldly in fact! Thanks for your powerful commitment.
    Peter Murray SJ (Buffalo)