James Martin, S.J.July 30, 2018
iStockSaint Ignatius Loyola statue in front of Higgins Hall at Boston College, sculpted by Pablo Eduardo. (iStock)

Subscribe to “The Examen” for free on Apple Podcasts

Subscribe to “The Examen” for free on Google Play

Join our Patreon Community

On July 31 in 1556, St. Ignatius of Loyola, the Founder of the Jesuit Order, died at the Jesuit residence in Rome, after decades of serving the Jesuits, the Catholic Church and the whole People of God. He was at various points in his life a soldier, a mystic, a beggar, a pilgrim, a student, a priest, a fundraiser, a spiritual director, and an administrator. As it was for nearly all of the saints, life was sometimes tough.  And confusing.  When he was a young man, he thought he was going to be a great soldier, but a cannonball shattered his leg and ended his military career. Later, he thought that he should live like an ascetic, but he found it harmed his health and he had to start eating better. He thought he would move to the Holy Land, but he was turned away. 

At each juncture, Ignatius had to discern what to do when it seemed like his path was blocked. As a result, he is sometimes called the “Patron Saint of Plan B.” Ignatius shows us that the path to holiness can sometimes be confusing and rather circuitous. So don’t worry too much about changing your mind or your course. Ignatius and many others did it before you did—and reached their destination all the same. 

Comments are automatically closed two weeks after an article's initial publication. See our comments policy for more.
JR Cosgrove
2 years 10 months ago

My wife while reading the Magnificat, told me today was St. Ignatius's feast day. We along with a friend went to Loyola last October. If you are ever in northern Spain, make a trip there. It is worth it.

Dr.Cajetan Coelho
2 years 10 months ago

Saint Ignatius of Loyola - Pray for us.

The latest from america

Accusations and implications of hypocrisy have been easy to find on all sides of this controversy.
Sam Sawyer, S.J. June 22, 2021
If those Catholics who insist on denying Communion to the president feel vindicated or take delight in the process, it is a clear sign that perhaps they should not receive Communion themselves.
Gloria PurvisJune 22, 2021
Cardinal Mauro Gambetti today reaffirmed restrictions on the private celebration of pre-Vatican II Masses at St. Peter’s Basilica: “So that what is exceptional does not become ordinary.”
The president of the U.S.C.C.B. has asked the nation’s Catholics to pray for him and his brother bishops “as we continue our dialogues and reflections” in the process of drafting a document on the “meaning of the Eucharist in the life of the church.”