أخبار ذات صلة

Easter Greetings from the AMC!

Easter Greetings from the AMC!

It has been a challenging year for many migrants in Lebanon. Our community members have weathered rising rents and scarcer work, fears of expanding conflict, travel restrictions, and a whole host of daily difficulties. And yet, Easter joy abounds! The joy of the resurrection was made obvious this last week here in the AMC. Our whole community gathered for the Paschal Triduum to walk with Christ through his death and resurrection.

قراءة المزيد
D’Ankara à Belfast, Le Caire, Ephèse, Nicée, Eskişehir, Almaty (et bien d’autres lieux!)

D’Ankara à Belfast, Le Caire, Ephèse, Nicée, Eskişehir, Almaty (et bien d’autres lieux!)

Qu’est-ce que vous faites à Ankara? Telle est souvent une des premières questions que j’entends lorsque je voyage. Chacun de nous quatre avons bien sûr nos activités habituelles: Michael écrit pour diverses publications (maintenant sur “l’appel universel à la sainteté”); Changmo étudie le turc, commence à s’engager avec les jeunes à la paroisse et s’acclimate peu à peu à la Turquie; Alexis, responsable de cette paroisse turcophone et de la formation de ses catéchumènes, est également impliqué dans des médias et la gestion pratique de la résidence; quant à moi, supérieur de celle-ci, je travaille dans la formation et l’accompagnement au service de l’Église de Turquie, et ai quelques engagements en dehors du pays pour le dialogue interreligieux, à divers titres.

قراءة المزيد

The third batch of tertians in Bikfaya have just graduated their school of the heart. Theirs has been a very particular class. It is true of every class, and of each tertian. But armed conflicts leading to displacements and disruptions are not a common tertianship experiment. I am so grateful that all participants kept safe and well, and even drew no little spiritual profit from the difficult situation in which they found themselves.

As I listened to them sharing the fruit of the review of the year, I was all the more convinced that tertianship is what tertians give to each other. To be sure, only God gives what God gives: spiritual freedom and consolation, inner awareness and reconciliation, the calling by one’s name and the gift of one’s vocation. The unique way in which one’s own journey becomes part of the spiritual journey of the Society of Jesus across her history, the unique way by which each one is “put with the Son”, “under the banner of the Cross”, “serving the mission of Christ”, collaborating with Him in his grand undertaking of helping souls reconcile with their Creator, is what tertianship aims at bringing to one’s awareness, shaping in the Jesuit the heart of an Apostle. For this to happen, you need a safe space. My spiritual father once said to me that religious superiors expect abnegation from their brothers without first loving them; no one can go through authentic abnegation if they are not aware that they are loved. No one can integrate into the Body of the Society of Jesus if they do not feel they are loved, and this is where community life is key.

What tertians can give to each other is a space of hospitality and security, governed by a covenant whereby “you shall be safe in my deeds, in my speech and even in my thoughts… I will defend you against my own thoughts”. The quality of community life that the tertians allow among themselves is both an indicator of, and a condition for the quality of their tertianship. The Jesuits reach tertianship with “bumps and bruises”, many of them originate in their early background, but so many are caused by the poor quality of community life they had during their Jesuit years. The healing they experience during their time in tertianship – and tertianship is about time! – relies oftentimes on the way they build community among themselves and with their formators.

One aspect of integral ecology is the safeguarding of the communication environment. Unhealthy communication will lead to violence, hot or cold. The care we give to the space of communication is a fundamental dimension of the love that binds us in Christ and among us. Spiritual conversation is the art of seeking and finding the good spirit within our conversation and clinging to that spirit. What tertians can give each other is spiritual conversation. When we were discussing the best course to take, after the eruption of violence in and around Gaza, we were able to move beyond frustration and accusation towards welcoming the different ways in which the one spirit was moving each of us according to his own spiritual challenge. The result was that our dispersion did not weaken our bond, it rather strengthened it.

The welcoming attitude allows yet another healing process. So many of us carry the burden of an unnamed disappointment, a pernicious sadness, that comes from a representation of spiritual life as being in a state of detachment, or freedom, or commitment, or what have you! If I learned something from Gregory of Nyssa, it is that perfection is not a state, rather an orientation. Perfection as a state would be mere idolatry. Idols persecute us. They produce guilt and sadness in us. Because I regret being merely who I am, I cannot properly find God. When tertianship is conceived as an opportunity to finally address the pending decision to live according to the standards of a holy life, then tertianship will only add to my disappointment. The reconciliation process requires an “authorization”: I am allowed to be who I am, a human being in process, son of God in the making. This authorization is what God gives; it’s the community that mediates it. Tertians give each other the occasion of unmasking the idols that drain our affectivity, because they move in the opposite direction: where idols provoke persecution, the brothers offer forgiveness.

I read somewhere that the desert fathers used to consider the novitiate to have ended when the young monk has discovered the devil. It is a dramatic way to say that the monk can go on his own when he has identified the place of his own spiritual struggle. There, no novice master, no instructor, no mentor can do the work in his stead. He will benefit from the counsel of his companions, but the greatest thing he can offer the community, the Church, indeed the world, is to take on his own struggle, learning in the process how to fight well. This is what the former tertians can give us now that their novitiate has finally come to an end.

Taking final vows in the Society of Jesus is becoming responsible for the whole apostolic body that we form. Should the Society of Jesus come to be extinguished in some place, or some time, the professed member can reignite her, because he has the Jesuit “DNA”. The Society of Jesus will be what the tertians will be. They offer us the Society that God has given us.

Fr. Dany Younes, S.J.

أخبار ذات صلة

Easter Greetings from the AMC!

Easter Greetings from the AMC!

It has been a challenging year for many migrants in Lebanon. Our community members have weathered rising rents and scarcer work, fears of expanding conflict, travel restrictions, and a whole host of daily difficulties. And yet, Easter joy abounds! The joy of the resurrection was made obvious this last week here in the AMC. Our whole community gathered for the Paschal Triduum to walk with Christ through his death and resurrection.

قراءة المزيد
D’Ankara à Belfast, Le Caire, Ephèse, Nicée, Eskişehir, Almaty (et bien d’autres lieux!)

D’Ankara à Belfast, Le Caire, Ephèse, Nicée, Eskişehir, Almaty (et bien d’autres lieux!)

Qu’est-ce que vous faites à Ankara? Telle est souvent une des premières questions que j’entends lorsque je voyage. Chacun de nous quatre avons bien sûr nos activités habituelles: Michael écrit pour diverses publications (maintenant sur “l’appel universel à la sainteté”); Changmo étudie le turc, commence à s’engager avec les jeunes à la paroisse et s’acclimate peu à peu à la Turquie; Alexis, responsable de cette paroisse turcophone et de la formation de ses catéchumènes, est également impliqué dans des médias et la gestion pratique de la résidence; quant à moi, supérieur de celle-ci, je travaille dans la formation et l’accompagnement au service de l’Église de Turquie, et ai quelques engagements en dehors du pays pour le dialogue interreligieux, à divers titres.

قراءة المزيد
بفرحٍ وقلوبٍ مضطرمة – الذكرى السنويّة العاشرة لاستشهاد الأب فرانس ڤان دِر لوخت اليسوعيّ

بفرحٍ وقلوبٍ مضطرمة – الذكرى السنويّة العاشرة لاستشهاد الأب فرانس ڤان دِر لوخت اليسوعيّ

في حمص، في المدينة الّتي لم يخذلها ولن يتركها الأب فرانس، اجتمع لفيف من المؤمنين بحضور ممثّلي الكنيسة المحلّيّة بأطيافها كافّة، حبًّا ورغبة في الاحتفال وشكر الله على شهادة هذا الكاهن الهولّنديّ الّذي قدّم لأبناء سوريا الكثير حتّى الموت.

قراءة المزيد
Jesuits in Mesopotamia

Jesuits in Mesopotamia

Fifty-five years after the expulsion of the Jesuits of Al Hikma University from Iraq in 1969—the Jesuits of Baghdad College had already been expelled in 1968—the Jesuits have bought a house in Baghdad.

قراءة المزيد
Share This