“Develop your personality and excel in everything you do” Fr. Norbert

Jesuit schools in India had a special celebration for the Feast of St. Ignatius of Loyola, or “Loyola Day” as many schools refer to this day. Fr. Sunny Jacob, S.J. JEA Secretary forwarded stories and photos from a number of schools around India, showing these colourful school communities from different religious backgrounds (Christian, Hindu, Muslim) celebrating together. 

AKJM School, Kanjirapally

AKJM School, Kanjirapally celebrated the Feast of St. Ignatius of Loyola in a grand style. There was a colourful stage programme by the students which included the history of St. Ignatius Loyola as a Nritha Sangeetha Shilpam. On Saturday 31.07.2016 at 12.00 p.m. teachers had a get together programme here with Jesuit family members and a delicious food was served. In connection with the feast celebration the newly constructed gate, sponsored by AKJM Alumni Association, was inaugurated on 29.07.2016 by His Excellency Mar Jose Pulickal, the Auxiliary Bishop of Knajirapally, in the presence Rev. Fr. Sunny Kunnapally S.J., the vice provincial of Kerala Jesuit Society.

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St. Lawrence High School, Kolkata

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St. Ignatius School, Aurangabad Bihar

St. Ignatius School celebrated the feast of St. Ignatius with great joy and enthusiasm. As a preparation for the feast, the school conducted special assemblies for eight days for the teachers and students. Each day one Ignatian theme was chosen for the assembly. The teachers and students took special interest to make the assembly more creative and meaningful. The first day’s the theme was the life and conversion of St. Ignatius. The second day’s theme was ‘Need for Education’ the third day’s theme was ‘Promotion of justice’, the fourth day’s theme was ‘Respect for other faiths, the fifth day’s theme was ‘Care for environment, the sixth day’s theme was ‘Magis’, the seventh day’s theme was ‘For the greater glory of God and the eighth day’s theme was’ Finding God in all things. All the themes were dramatized during the assembly by the students with the help of teachers, and through this they conveyed the message of Ignatian values.

Though 99 % students in the school are Hindus and Muslims, the enthusiasm and interest among the students were praiseworthy. Through our assemblies we try to communicate to the students the values of Christ. On 30.07.2016 the school celebrated the feast of St. Ignatius, the patron of the school. A spectacular cultural programme was arranged by the teachers and students on this occasion and all the Jesuits were well facilitated. Fr. Norbert the superior and secretary of the school delivered an inspiring message to the teachers and students. In his message he highlighted the theme of ‘magis’. He advised the students to do more in everything they do and not to be satisfied with minimum. ‘Develop your personality and excel in everything you do”. He encouraged them to develop the attitude of to be more, to be a more loving and a caring person in society. He also called the students and teachers to make a difference in their lives and the lives of others. In his message he emphasized on the 4 Cs that is compassion, conscience, competence and commitment. Jesuit education always gives emphasis to these 4 C’s.

The students as a token of their love and appreciation to the Jesuit fathers contributed rupees twenty five thousand which will be used for special school activities. The teachers also felicitated all the Jesuits with gifts. Prior to the feast a number of competitions were held and the winners were given prizes on this occasion. Frs. Francis S.J and Michael SJ took extra effort to organize the special assemblies for the feast. Fr. Richard D’Souza SJ, principal expressed his gratitude to the teachers and students through a vote of thanks. Students were given snacks and the teachers had breakfast with the Jesuits.    

In the school we give importance to tolerance and respect for all religions by celebrating festivals of other faiths.  As I said that majority of our students and teachers belong to Hindu and Muslim faiths there is a bond of unity among the teachers and students. The teachers and students have been taking special initiatives to organize the feast of St. Ignatius and Christmas every year. The teachers and students look forward to this occasion very enthusiastically.  

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Loyola School, Jamshedpur

The celebrations for the Feast Day began well in advance with a retreat for all Catholic students from std. VI to XII on July 23, 2016. Fathers from XLRI were invited to speak to the children on some aspects from the life of St Ignatius and on some verses from the Holy Bible.

This was followed by a Quiz on the life of St Ignatius for the students of Std IX to XII on July 27, 2016.

On July 29, 2016, there was a grand musical on the life of St Ignatius. The show was put up by the students of the entertainment Club. The musical had drama, dance, music, role play and most important of all, values to be shared and imbibed by the students.

There was also a short video on the important milestones on the life of St Ignatius.

On Sunday July 31, 2016, there was Celebration of the Holy Eucharist followed by lunch for all the staff of the school.

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De Nobili School, Mugma

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St. Xavier’s School, Katkuva, Surat

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Thanks to all the schools for sharing glimpses, thoughts, of this special celebration with the rest of the global community!