Jesuits in Asia Pacific: News Bulletin March 2017

JCAP News

Fr Nicolás celebrates 50 years as a priest

Fr Adolfo Nicolás celebrates golden jubilee as a priestFr Adolfo Nicolás SJ marked his golden jubilee as a priest on March 17 in a manner in keeping with his characteristic humility.  The simple celebration comprised Mass in the Oratory of the Loyola House of Studies concelebrated by Jesuit Conference of Asia Pacific President Fr Mark Raper SJ and Arrupe International Residence Fr Renato Repole SJ and dinner in the AIR refectory. “It is a joy for us to celebrate you Nico. I hope you enjoy it too, even if you do not like to be the centre of attention,” said Fr Raper as he began his homily.  More

Rediscovering solidarity

GIAN Migration meeting 2017, Jakarta“So, where is home for you?” Upon hearing this question, Sediqa broke down in tears. This seemingly innocent question brought back the only vague memory she has of the home she left when she was four. Being Hazara, a Shiite ethnic group in predominantly Sunni Afghanistan, she and her family were forced to flee the land they called home. Now 24 years old, Sediqa is stranded in Cisarua, West Java, Indonesia, the last stop in her seemingly endless journey through Pakistan, Iran and to the promised land that seems more and more distant as the time passes.  More

Exploring new ways of promoting the Jesuit vocation

Vocation Promoters in Taipei, 2017Vocation promoters across the Jesuit Conference of Asia Pacific (JCAP) continue to discuss inventive ways of encouraging young men to inquire about vocations in the Society of Jesus, and discern whether they have a vocation as a Jesuit priest or brother.  This year’s meeting focussed on using new communications technology in vocation promotion.  JCAP Vocation Promoters Coordinator Fr Alberto Irenus SJ led the reflection and sharing of experiences by the 18 vocation promoters from 10 Jesuit provinces who gathered for the meeting held at the Wencui Missionary Center in Taipei from February 8 to 9.  More

From the Provinces

Building the Philippines’ first eco-friendly school

Ateneo de Davao University Senior High School perspectiveAteneo de Davao University is building a new campus for its senior high school that is being touted as the first environmentally responsible school in the Philippines. The campus has been designed to create a contemporary, sustainable and transformative learning environment following Pope Francis’ environmental directives in his encyclical, Laudato si’.  The groundbreaking ceremony was held on February 15 and the school is expected to be completed in May 2019.  Fr Joel E Tabora SJ, President of Ateneo de Davao University, said that the new school’s facilities “will help mould its students to become environmentally aware and ecologically responsible learners”.  More

Jesuits to leave Toowong parish at the end of 2017

Fr Peter Quin SJAfter more than 100 years of serving in the parish, the Jesuits will be withdrawing from St Ignatius Toowong in Brisbane at the end of this year. The Parishes Task Force was set up more than 18 months ago to respond to the increasing difficulty of finding Jesuits to serve in all nine parishes across the country.  Led by the Province Delegate for Parishes, Sr Libby Rogerson IBVM, the task force was asked to discern and develop criteria for remaining in or withdrawing from a parish, and then to make recommendations for the Provincial and Consult.  More

From the Ministries

Standing up for life

Ateneo de Manila broadcasts opposition to death penaltyRebuilding lives and rekindling hope. This is the motto of the Philippine Jesuit Prison Service Foundation Inc (PJPS) based in the New Bilibid Prisons Reservation, the national penitentiary.  Like other Philippine prisons, the inmates are crammed in hot, dark and poorly ventilated cells.  The prison compound has a capacity of about 10,000 inmates, but it is housing more than 24,000. The overcrowding means the inmates have to sleep in shifts.  The congestion also increases their risk of catching all kinds of infectious diseases, but the budget for medicine is only P7 (about 10 US cents) per inmate and the budget for food is only P50 (about US$1) per day.  “What can you hope to get out of that?” asked PJPS Executive Director Fr Eli Rowdy Lumbo SJ.  More

Other Jesuit News

Fr Sosa visits India in first official trip as Superior General

Fr General Arturo Sosa in DelhiFr Arturo Sosa SJ was in India recently in his first official trip since being elected Superior General of the Society of Jesus on October 14, 2016. His choice underlines the demographic shift within the universal Society. The Jesuit Conference of South Asia accounts for close to 25 percent of the whole Society and the majority of the 4,027 Jesuits are from India. Fr General spent 11 days, from February 18 to 28, visiting his Jesuit confreres and companions in Delhi, Jabalpur, Ambikapur and Raipur. Speaking at Vidyajyoti, the Jesuit theologate in New Delhi the morning he arrived, Fr Sosa urged the Jesuits to help humanise the world saying, “it is the primary mission that is given to us”.  More

Promotio Iustitiae shines spotlight on the prison ministry

Khao Bin Central Prison, ThailandThe prison ministry is the focus of the latest issue of Promotio Iustitiae painting, as Social Justice and Ecology Secretary Fr Patxi Álvarez SJ said, a picture of the quiet work Jesuits and lay collaborators have been doing to serve people in prison.  “The Jesuits, and the laypeople that they collaborate with, have a longstanding tradition of serving people in prison, dating back to the first companions of Jesus,” said Fr Álvarez.  Promotio Iustitiae is the publication of the Secretariat for Social Justice and Ecology at the General Curia of the Society of Jesus in Rome.  More

Jesuit Yearbook 2017 now available online

Jesuit Yearbook 2017“The world is our house.” This phrase used by early Jesuit Jerome Nadal appropriately begins a section on Jesuit work with indigenous communities, the special focus of the 2017 Yearbook of the Society of Jesus.  Nadal used it to refer to the multitudes of God's people and the expanse of human cultures, and the six articles are testimonies from Jesuits who work with indigenous communities in different corners of the world: defending the rights of aborigines in Australia; helping indigenous rural communities in Bolivia to improve their living conditions; preserving and promoting the cultural and tribal identities of India; sharing faith and everyday life with the people of Guyana; healing the scars of 20th century wars in Jeju Island, South Korea, and Okinawa, Japan; and striving to provide education, health and hope to remote communities in Zimbabwe.  More

Conference Calendar
March 23 to 25Migration Meeting, Tokyo, Japan
March 24 and 26JCAP Consult, Manila, Philippines
April 4 to 8Ignatian Spirituality Consultation, Yogyakarta, Indonesia
April 17 to 21Workshop on Ignatian School Leadership, Tagaytay, Philippines
May 11 to 18Leadership Development Programme IV, Seoul, South Korea
May 21 to 24Chaplains and Campus Ministers Meeting, Singapore

In this issue

Fr Nicolás celebrates 50 years as a priest

Rediscovering solidarity

Exploring new ways of promoting the Jesuit vocation

Building the Philippines’ first eco-friendly school

Jesuits to leave Toowong parish at the end of 2017

Standing up for life

Fr Sosa visits India in first official trip as Superior General

Promotio Iustitiae shines spotlight on the prison ministry

Jesuit Yearbook 2017 now available online