News Detail
Jesuit Father Fred Kammer
"It is a gift to each of us for which we should be grateful and a cause for rejoicing in our calling." — Jesuit Father Fred Kammer
Jesuit Tells Law Students Defending Rights of the Poor is a 'Noble Profession'

October 28, 2013 — To care for the poor, defend their rights and enable them to shape their own destinies is a noble profession, Jesuit Father Fred Kammer told a gathering of law students from Saint Louis University Oct. 7.

"It is a gift to each of us for which we should be grateful and a cause for rejoicing in our calling," said Fr. Kammer, former president of Catholic Charities USA and a lawyer himself.

Fr. Kammer recalled his own days as a law student looking for an intern position. He landed at the Atlanta Legal Aid Society, spending several years there before leaving and then returning as director of the Senior Citizens Law Project in Atlanta.

"While people inside and outside legal services often were surprised that I was both a priest and a lawyer, I always felt that my legal services work fit hand-in-glove with my sense of myself as a Jesuit priest," he said.

Fr. Kammer, now the director of the Jesuit Social Research Institute at Loyola University in New Orleans, said, "I cannot imagine a more fitting place to exercise my ministry than in representing poor clients, working to change unjust laws and regulations and trying to help the poor gain access to society's institutions."

In almost every nation, he said, those who are poor are women, children and those who are different than the majority. “The responsibility to care for and defend the least among us is shared by multiple religious traditions," Fr. Kammer said.

Pope Francis is underscoring "this profoundly religious insight" in both his statements and his actions, Fr. Kammer said. It "underscores the connection for those in this room between lawyering for the poor — which is an obligation of every lawyer — and religious faith."

Pope Francis, he said, recently spoke of a "globalization of indifference" where so many people pass by those in need. Fr. Kammer pointed out that "we can't live in a bubble and not look at the world around us."

According to Fr. Kammer, the goal is to advocate for the right of people to be “artisans of their own destiny.” [St. Louis Review]


Recent News

July 9, 2014 — Jesuit Father Greg Boyle has been recognized by the White House as a "Champion of Change" for his Los Angeles-based gang intervention program, Homeboy Industries.

July 7, 2014 — A new Boston College study found men who pursue vocations to the priesthood are more likely to have attended a Catholic college.

July 4, 2014 — For newly-ordained Jesuit Father Mario Powell, a Pope Francis Jesuit is one who embodies a “back-to-basics Christianity.”

July 2, 2014 — Jesuit Father William B. Neenan, who served for more than three decades at Boston College, died on June 24.

June 30, 2014 — British Jesuit Father Tim Byron has created a website devoted to the 1814 restoration of the Society of Jesus.

June 27, 2014 — The Catholic Church was at the heart of the small town where newly-ordained Jesuit Father Michael Rozier grew up. It was there he began to experience an early call to the priesthood.

June 27, 2014 — Jesuit Father Adolfo Nicolás has appointed Jesuit Father James K. Voiss as rector of the Gonzaga University Jesuit Community.

view all news

Search news

Publications
Since St. Ignatius bought a printing press in 1556, the Jesuits have been involved in communications. Today the Society of Jesus publishes a number of award-winning journals and publications. Click below to access our latest issues.

America - 7/7/14

America - 6/23/14

America - 6/9/14



Loyola Retreat House
Situated on a bluff overlooking the Potomac River, Loyola Retreat House is located 35 miles south of Washington, D.C., in southern Maryland.