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Wednesday, July 30, 2014

St Ignatius of Loyola

"This word came to Jeremiah from the LORD: Rise up, be off to the potter’s house; there I will give you my message." Jer 18:1

In a brief biography about Ignatius Loyola we read, "As a member of the Velazquez household, he was frequently at court and developed a taste for all it presented, especially the ladies. He was much addicted to gambling, very contentious, and not above engaging in swordplay on occasion." (Ignatius life) In other words, Ignatius was a typical young man of the privileged class. 

More concerned with his own pleasure and ephemeral power than the welfare of others, Ignatius was arrogant, entitled and aggressive, not someone his contemporaries would have imagined becoming one of the great and most revered saints of the Western Church. But God had plans for Ignatius, and God's desire for him won out. 

Badly wounded in battle, Ignatius had nothing to do but fantasize about a woman he hoped to marry. Unsatisfied and dispirited, when he began to read a life of Christ and the lives of the saints, his spirit quieted and he felt peaceful. Discernment of Spirits, for which he would become famous, was born. Ignatius knew that his heart was driving him away from his former life more deeply into the Gospel, and when he responded God drew him closer and led him towards other young men who were eager to life a Gospel life. Not long afterwards the Society of Jesus was born.

Today, let your heart speak its truth and ask for the grace to follow it.

Have you had religious experiences that changed your life?

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