The Jesuit Pope Calls the Jesuit General

I’ve been given permission by the Jesuit Curia to reprint this story, sent around to Jesuits worldwide, written by Lisbert D’Souza, SJ, who works in our Jesuit Headquarters in Rome.

From the Jesuit General Curia, Rome

Advertisement

At around 10.00 a.m. this morning our receptionist, a delightful young man named Andrea, received a call.

"This is Pope Francis", said the voice. "May I speak to Fr General?"

 Andrew was flabbergasted and couldn’t speak.

 "This is not a joke, said the voice. I am Pope Francis. Who are you?"

"I am Andrea", Andrea finally managed to stutter.

"Good", said the voice, "let me talk to the General".

Andrea directed the call to Brother Wobeto (a Brazilian) who is the General’s personal secretary

 "I am Pope Francis", said the voice. "May I speak to the General?"

Wobeto said, "Holy Father, we are praying much for you."

"Praying for what?" asked the Pope. "To go ahead or to go back?"

"To go ahead", said Wobeto and burst into the General’s office with mobile to his ear and still speaking

 "The Pope!" said Wobeto, and thrust the mobile into the General’s face.

The General was totally taken aback.  

He said he was so disoriented he was calling him "Pope, Your Holiness, Monsignor…."

The General said the Pope was most cordial.

"Thank you for your personal letter to me", said the Pope.

"I look forward to meeting you," said the General.

"And I you", said the Pope. "We shall meet as soon as we can. I will phone you and we can fix a date."

For us we are touched that of the hundreds of letters he would have received, the Pope set aside the one from our General and took the initiative to call.

It is traditional that when a new Pope is elected, the General meets him to renew the vow that links the Society with the Pope.

Here's an enjoyable video of an interview with the astonished and animated receptionist, Andrea.  

Comments are automatically closed two weeks after an article's initial publication. See our comments policy for more.

Advertisement

Don't miss the best from America

Sign up for our Newsletter to get the Jesuit perspective on news, faith and culture.

The latest from america

Imtiaz Cajee, nephew of Ahmed Timol, poses with his book about the activist on Aug. 24 in the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria, South Africa. (AP Photo, File)
A judge has overturned a finding of suicide and ruled that Ahmed Timol was murdered by South Africa’s Security Police 45 years ago.
Anthony EganOctober 23, 2017
Activists with Planned Parenthood demonstrate in support of a pregnant 17-year-old being held in a Texas facility for unaccompanied immigrant children to obtain an abortion, outside of the Department of Health and Human Services in Washington, Friday, Oct. 20, 2017.
Texas bishops: "No one -- the government, private individuals or organizations -- should be forced to be complicit in abortion."
Catholic News ServiceOctober 23, 2017
It is time for the laity to speak out and act like true disciples of Christ in spreading the joy of the Gospel. 
Thomas J. ReeseOctober 23, 2017
Pope Francis speaks from the Vatican as he addresses Canadian youths in a video message that was included in a Salt and Light Television program on Oct. 22 (CNS photo/courtesy Holy See Press Office).
“The world, the church, are in need of courageous young people, who are not cowed in the face of difficulties," the pope said.
Michael J. O’LoughlinOctober 23, 2017