- Monday, 22 November 2010 08:01
Urbano Cardinal Navarrete Cortés, SJ, 90, died today. The Mass of Christian Burial is scheduled for November 24; the Dean of the College of Cardinals, Angelo Cardinal Sodano will celebrate the Sacrifice of the Mass and His Holiness will preside over the Final Commendation and give a valediction.
His Eminence was a professor of Canon Law, a former rector of the Pontifical Gregorian University, a prolific author and a consultor of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Disciple of the Sacraments.
In 2007, Pope Benedict created Father Navarrete a cardinal of the Roman Church. He was dispensed of the episcopal dignity. The Pope assigned him the Church of San Ponziano as his titular Church.
Cardinal Navarrete was a Spanish Jesuit (entering in 1937), ordained priest in 1952. And since 1958 was a professor of Canon Law at the Gregorian, specializing in marriage law, where he also served as dean of the Canon Law faculty.
- Wednesday, 03 November 2010 15:00
At this moment, family, friends, and Jesuits are gathering for the Mass of Christian Burial for the Reverend Father Allen P. Novotny, SJ, 58, President of Gonzaga College High School, Washington, DC. I mention this because I had the privilege of living with Allen for a year and liked him very much. I’ve been saddened since hearing the news on October 27th that Allen died earlier that day from a mutual friend. I was unable to make the funeral Mass but have not ceased praying for Allen’s peace and God’s mercy upon Allen and the rest of us. Eternal rest, dear friend.
- Monday, 19 July 2010 22:11
The art world is abuzz due to an article in L’Osservatore Romano on Sunday stating that a “lost Caravaggio” may now be found.
The as yet unauthenticated painting, “The Martyrdom of St Lawrence,” owned by the Society of Jesus, is thought to be a Caravaggio because it has the hallmarks of a Caravaggio, including dramatic lighting effects, the L’Osservatore Romano said. “Certainly it’s a stylistically impeccable, beautiful painting,” the article stated in its Sunday edition. “One can’t but be reminded of works like the Conversion of St Paul, the Martyrdom of St Matthew and Judith and Holofernes.”
Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio is the acknowledged pioneer of the Baroque painting technique of contrasting light and dark known in Italian as “chiaroscuro.” It is estimated that about 80 of the painter’s works are extant. He was born in Milan and trained there under Titian. Many are also aware of the artist’s wild lifestyle and the alleged murder he committed of a man in a brawl and then fled Rome. Moreover, Caravaggio’s mysterious death in 1610 has long intrigued scholars. Among the theories of his disappearance are that he was killed on a deserted Tuscan beach or collapsed there due to an illness. Italian anthropologists announced last month they had found the famous artist’s mortal remains. The artist’s club is observing the 400th anniversary of the artist’s death.
Leave it to the Jesuits to have at least two Caravaggio’s!
- Wednesday, 21 April 2010 12:12
I haven’t seen him in nearly 7 years, but I was very sad to hear of the death of Jesuit Father William W. Meissner, 79, the other day. A New York Province Jesuit priest who was trained as a psychiatrist at Harvard, Bill was a great man in my mind with lots of quirks, probably too many to speak of. Bill was the sort of man who didn’t suffer fools gladly; he was one of those Jesuits who worked very hard and play well but didn’t do pastoral work. His life as a priest is was dedicated to the ministry of research and teaching. All the same, I loved being on vacation with Bill and I remember fondly our many serious conversations. When I studied in Boston in the early 1990s he gave a series of lectures on the psychology of Saint Ignatius of Loyola which I attended and found incomprehensible; the lectures eventually became a book, Ignatius of Loyola: The Psychology of a Saint, you may have seen it. I have to admit that psychoanalyzing a dead saint is a bit weird –with or without a couch– but fascinating nonetheless because we got a glimpse into the heart and mind of terrific saint.
May Bill Meissner’s memory be eternal.
- Sunday, 18 April 2010 12:37
Today, in Valladolid, Spain, Father Bernardo de Hoyos (1711-1735) was beatified. I previously mentioned Father de Hoyos on this blog. Here is a précis of Father Adolfo Nicolás’ letter to the Jesuits. The full text of the letter can be read here Bernard de Hoyos letter.pdf
“He is considered the first apostle of the Sacred Heart in Spain. To recapture who he was and what he contributed, I offer some biographical information that should be understood in the religious and cultural context of the 18th century.” Thus begins Nicolás’ for this occasion. More than a century ago, in 1895, the cause for Father De Hoyos was introduced; due to many ecclesiastical vicissitudes and the political history of Spain, it was repeatedly postponed. Father Nicolás, in his letter, traces the major events in the very short life of the newly beatified who died on the 29th of November 1735 at the age of 24. Near to the time of his death, de Hoyos was ordained a priest and in Tertianship.
“His reputation for holiness,” the letter continues. “spread immediately after his death. However, because of the difficult situation in which the Society found itself opposed by the Jansenists, the cause for beatification was not introduced at that time. Later the suppression of the Society would leave many projects unfinished. When the Society was restored in 1814 by Pope Pius VII, a strong devotion to the Sacred Heart emerged in the whole Church. In accord with the religious sensibilities of the time, the reborn Society dedicated itself to the spread and propagation of this devotion with significant results.” The letter outlines the steps of this recovery of the devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, beginning with Jesuits’ General Congregation 31st in 1965, through the generalate of Father Pedro Arrupe and then with generalate of Father Peter Hans Kolvenbach.
Then Father Nicolás goes on: “Bernardo de Hoyos’s passion for the Heart of Jesus faithfully corresponds to the devotion that Saint Ignatius felt for Jesus poor and humble, before whom he asks that our affections be moved in order to accompany Him in each step of His life: As companions with him on mission, his way is our way (GC35, D.2, nº 14), so that in what we do in the world there must always be a transparency to God (GC35, D. 2, nº 10). On the occasion of this beatification, I invite the whole Society, together with our collaborators, to renew our personal love of Jesus Christ and to open ourselves to the grace of identifying ourselves with Him, so that in Nadal’s words, we might understand with His understanding; will with His will; remember with His memory; and that our entire being, living, and doing be not centered in us, but in Christ (MHSI vol 90. p.122; GC35, D. 2, nº14), as the cornerstone of the particular vocation to which each of us has been called.”
Father Nicolás concludes his letter: “May the Father who has hidden these things from the wise and the learned and has revealed them to the childlike (Mt 11, 25) through the intercession of Blessed Bernardo de Hoyos, grant the Society the grace of accomplishing its mission of being in the Church a loving response to Him who was pierced by the pain and the aggressive injustice of a world in need of forgiveness and reconciliation.”
May Blessed Bernardo de Hoyos show us the way to the Heart of Jesus!