Thomas D. Stegman SJ

A personal account of the most recent congregation of Jesuits by Thomas D. Stegman SJ, Dean and Professor Ordinarius at Boston College School of Theology and Ministry.

Over two hundred Jesuits from all parts of the world were in Rome from 2 October until 12 November 2016 for a general congregation. This marked the thirty-sixth such congregation of the Society of Jesus, founded in 1540. It was the thirty-first one called to elect a new general superior.

Before beginning our work, the 215 members (most of whom were elected by our province congregations) gathered at the Society’s Church of the Gesù for a concelebrated Eucharist. We were joined by hundreds of other Jesuits and friends of the Society. Fr. Bruno Cadoré, Master of the Order of Preachers (the Dominicans), gave an inspiring homily in which he exhorted us Jesuits to ‘dare the audacity of the improbable’ while clinging closely in humility to God, from whom we find our source of strength. It was a fitting exhortation for a congregation whose motto was ‘rowing into the deep.’

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