News
Our Response to Calls from Pope Francis and Fr. General Sosa

August 28, 2018

Feast of St. Augustine

Dear brothers and friends in the Lord,

Christ’s Peace!

Last Wednesday, in my letter in response to the abuse crisis we are experiencing, I indicated that I would propose concrete ways of acting on the Holy Father’s call for prayer and fasting by the members of the Church. Fr. Sosa’s letter of August 24 which echoes that call offers us further impetus.

After discussion with my Consultors, I ask all Jesuit communities to take Saturday, September 15, the Feast of Our Lady of Sorrows, as a day of fasting and prayer. Since we are called to communal conversion, I ask superiors to organize a Eucharist or time of prayer for the whole community and to foster the call to fasting on that day. The road ahead will involve all of us in responding to this crisis and so it is right that we pray and fast in union with one another, seeking forgiveness of the sins that have been but also moving us to hunger and thirst for justice in solidarity with victims of abuse and all those who remain vulnerable. As Fr. Sosa notes, we need a conversion to help create a culture that is safe for children and all who are vulnerable.

Fr. Sosa has also asked all directors of (Jesuit) works to create some time of common prayer and penance; as Pope Francis wrote in his letter, ‘If one member suffers, all suffer together with it’ (1Cor 2:26). You know best how to help the women and men you serve respond to this call. You may find some date other than September 15 serves you best. Nevertheless, I ask all of you to reflect on how you will help the Church move forward in this important matter.

Is this the last step we will take? Obviously not. Both the Holy Father and Fr. Sosa invite us to a continuing process of conversion of mind and heart. This moment of prayer and fasting prepares us for the road ahead.

Thank you for responding to the call of the Society and the Church in this important matter. May Mary the Mother of the Lord intercede for us as together we seek to discern God’s call.

Your brother in the Lord,

Ronald A. Mercier, S.J.
Provincial


Related:
Fr. Mercier's Letter of August 22
Pope Francis: Letter to the People of God 
Superior General Fr. Arturo Sosa, SJ, on Sharing the Suffering of Abuse Victims, Fostering Culture of Protection





Recent News

April 3, 2020 - Father Roland J. Lesseps, SJ, died March 27, 2020, in Grand Coteau, La. He was 86 years old, a Jesuit for 68 years and a priest for 54 years.

April 2, 2020 - So much has changed in our world in the past month. One thing remains the same: our gratitude and concern for our friends and benefactors. Father Provincial Ronald A. Mercier sends a brief message.

Updated March 29, 2020 - Resources from across the Jesuit and Ignatian community to accompany you during this time of uncertainty - including a list of online Masses.

March 27, 2020 - Human needs continue during social distancing. The Social Ministry office of St. Francis Xavier Parish in Kansas City, Mo., has volunteers and professionals working to meet the physical, mental and spiritual needs of the parish community.

Updated March 26, 2020 – Out of concern for the well-being of Jesuits and province staff, Fr. Provincial Ronald A. Mercier, SJ, has decided to close the offices of the USA Central and Southern Province, effective March 18.

March 16, 2020 — A brief meditation to calm anxious nerves amid a global pandemic.

March 25, 2020 - Father David L. Koesterer, SJ, died March 11, 2020 in St. Louis. He was 90 years old, a Jesuit for 68 years and a priest for 55 years.

view all news

Search news

Publications






Our Lady of the Oaks Retreat House
Our Lady of the Oaks Retreat House, located in Grand Coteau, La., has provided a beautiful setting for retreats since 1938.