From May 2021 until July 2022, the Society of Jesus is celebrating an Ignatian Year. May 20, 2021, marks the 500th anniversary of St. Ignatius’ conversion, which happened following his injury by a cannonball at the battle of Pamplona in Spain. Jesuits and the wider Jesuit family are invited to reflect on this moment of Ignatius’ life and on their own personal experiences. The theme for this Ignatian Year challenges and invites us to open the eyes of our hearts and see all things new in Christ.
As a global network of Jesuit schools, we wish to involve our community of students in this worldwide initiative by inviting them to participate in the global reflective and creative activity: “The World that Christ Desires”, a global project inspired by Ignatius, co-creating with Christ.
What does it involve?
The project has 4 steps: Context, Experience, Reflection and Sharing, and Creative Action.
We are inviting students to an in-depth prayerful reflective experience introducing them briefly to the story of Ignatius of Loyola, focusing especially on his experience of conversion and change of perspective. In this context, the experience at the River Cardoner enabled Ignatius to see all things new in Christ. The following 500 years are the fruit of that vision, one that invites us all to dream up and contribute “to building a better world, where the dignity of people is respected and where young people live in a joy-filled harmony with nature” (Third UAP). These are some of the hopes Fr. General Arturo Sosa has also shared for young people, but how do our students themselves imagine the world that Christ desires? What are their dreams, hopes, and plans for a more reconciled, just, peaceful, and compassionate world?
This is what we would like to invite your students to be a part of, a journey of creative reflection to imagine and illustrate “The World that Christ Desires”… ¡today and in the next 500 years!
The experience part of the project encourages students to do an Examen, which can be prayed together as a full class or in smaller groups. After the Examen, they will be invited to a short, personal imaginative reflective exercise, imagining or contemplating the world with Christ, as a friend by their side. With the guidance of reflective questions, they can then share their thoughts with their peers. The final step is what we have called creative action is where your students will use the insights they gained from the previous three steps, together with their imagination to capture their feelings and ideas by way of a creative piece, in the form of a drawing, a painting, a photo, or a poem.
What do you think? Would you like to take your students on this exceptional reflective and creative global journey? If so, we invite you to read more details about the project by downloading The World That Christ Desires Step by Step – Resources and Guide, where you will find an introduction and several videos, stories, and resources for each of the 4 steps to make this project fun and meaningful for your students, and easy to implement for you!
Gathering and Sharing of the Creative Work
We will be gathering the creative work during the months of August and October. The virtual global art exhibition, “The World that Christ Desires”, showcasing the students’ creative work, will open to our global community on November 5th (All Saints of the Society of Jesus).
If you have any questions please share them in the comment box below or send us an email to [email protected]