On Sunday, December 2nd, the solemn holy Eucharist was celebrated in the church of the Gesù on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the Collegio Internazionale del Gesù in which the Jesuits and the well-wishers of the college participated. The celebration was presided over by Fr. Juan Antonio Guerrero, the delegate of the DIR, the homily was delivered by Fr. Luis Orlando Torres, the rector of the college and the liturgical music was animated by the choir of the college which sung the melodies in different languages, coming from different parts of the world.
The homily of Fr. Torres focused on hope. In fact, it reveals to us the possibility of hoping without fearing the disappointments because our hope is rooted in Jesus Christ Himself. However, there is no other way of hoping other than in love, emphasized Fr. Rector. For this reason, quoting the words of Fr. Kolvenbach addressed to the college, he specified the importance of apostolate as an experience of love, of the same love that Christ has for every man, because only love fulfils hope.
Without doubt, this love is a process, recalls Fr. Rector. He, by highlighting the Spanish word “aprovechar”, which was very dear to St. Ignatius and also so important in the Constitutions, the Spiritual Exercises, the Spiritual Diary and in the Autobiography, invited the participants to raise their heads (Lk 21,25) so as to be able to raise our gaze to the point where love could lead us.
“Progress associates us to a process of growth and this is what St. Ignatius intends in the life of a Jesuit, a continuous progress in the path towards the Lord. That which is of value for the spiritual life of a Jesuit (that we can say for the spiritual life of every Christian) brings light to our apostolic mission: a continuous progress in love which has fruits such as justice, reconciliation and peace.”
The Collegio del Gesù wishes to accompany the scholastics in this hope in the process of their formation. In fact, the cultural diversity demands a “high esteem of charity” (in the words of P. Arrupe) because only this helps in “progress”, that is, to hope always in the other, to trust that it is possible to have an international community even in the world that raises the flags of nationalism. This sensibility transforms one’s own heart, because as Fr. Rector said, not only does it deal with the preoccupations of one’s own cultural horizon, but also there is a space for concern and suffering of other persons of other cultures.
As fruits of thanksgiving of the college to its founder, Fr. Delegate led a procession to the tomb of Fr. Arrupe (who is in the process of beatification), in front of which the concelebrants prayed the well-known meditation, “ Lord, teach us your way”.