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Pope Francis: to Jesuits, “walking together towards the peripheries where others do not go”

“Walking together – free and obedient – walking together towards the peripheries where others do not go”. Pope Francis summed up in this way the mission of the Jesuits in the address he delivered today at the General Curia of the Society of Jesus, where he attended the meeting of the 36th General Congregation and joined in the prayer with all participants. “The Church needs you”, Pope Francis told his brother priests in the footsteps of his predecessors – Blessed Paul VI, Saint John Paul II and Benedict XVI – after greeting the Superior General, Fr. Arturo Sosa Abascal. The style indicated to the Jesuits is “the way” of St Ignatius: “seeing things in fieri, in the making, except what is substantial”. It is a style that, according to the Pontiff, “frees the Society of Jesus from all forms of paralysis and from many trivialities”. “The essence of the Institute lies in walking towards Him”, Pope Francis recalled, citing the “formula”. “Both poverty and obedience as well as the fact of not being obliged to do certain things such as prayer in choir are neither requirements nor privileges, but rather ways of helping the mobility of the Society”, so that you may “run” towards “places, ages and peoples” and that “all rules may help concrete things”.

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