Feast of Stanislaus Kostka - Visit of Fr. General to the novitiate in Genoa

Tuesday, November 13, was the 450th anniversary of the “entrance to the Father’s House” of the young Jesuit saint, Stanislaus Kostka. Stanislaus is the patron saint of Jesuit novices and Fr. General wanted to commemorate this day of celebration in the company of novices.

In his homily, he focused on the second letter of St. Peter, in particular the passage that mentions how to respond to the gifts that God has given us. The Apostle Peter invites us to add to faith, virtue, knowledge of God, self-control, perseverance, piety, fraternity and love. Father Sosa commented as follows:

“In Ignatian language, it seems that we can add to the faith an election that is the fruit of a well-done discernment in personal prayer and in the presence of the one who accompanies us.”

On the path proposed to the disciple of Jesus, “piety” -- a quality that is not so much talked about nowadays -- plays a key role. According to the Superior General, it is a readiness to feel solidarity with those who suffer and to be available to meet the Lord in prayer, in the Eucharist and in contributing to the building of the community. A life of piety does not lock itself up in “pious” attitudes; it opens itself to others and is realized in fraternal love. “This path leads to full love, which unites us to God and other human beings.”

Father Sosa, referring to the short life of Saint Stanislaus, finally affirms: “It can therefore be deduced that Stanislaus Kostka had come this long way in a short time and had thus reached holiness, which, after all, can only be the fulfilment of this call to the joy of love that resounds in the hearts of every young person, as the Synod of Bishops of 2018 says (final document, no. 165).”

Father General, in conclusion, invites us to prayer. “Let us pray for each other, for our vocation to the Society of Jesus, for our openness of mind and heart to the gifts that the Lord wants to give us. Let us pray together that we will not tire of walking this path day after day. We are in good company with Stanislaus Kostka (...) and many companions who are open to the gifts of the Lord and generously dedicated to the service of reconciliation and justice.”

- The complete text of Fr. General’s homily, in Italian, is available