Jesuits in Chile


No deep thoughts today.  This is something akin to a public service announcement regarding the activity of the Jesuits of Chile in the wake of the recent earthquake.  I have it on good authority that the earthquake struck when the entire Chilean province were assembled for their annual silent retreat.  Perhaps fittingly, they were entering into the Third Week of St. Ignatius’ Spiritual Exercises, the contemplation of the passion of the Lord.  And ever since the earth shook, they have been one of the most prominent forces for organized com-passion in their country.  In fact, two of the three domestic organizations designated by the Chilean government to coordinate relief efforts are Jesuit charities: Hogar de Cristo and Un Techo Para Chile.  (If you are inclined to contribute to the relief effort in Chile, it might be easiest to do so through the website of the Maryland Province).  Both the great trust of the Chilean people in the Jesuits and the significant investment of the Jesuits in charitable works seem to be the enduring legacy of the most recently canonized Jesuit saint, Fr. Alberto Hurtado.

Crisis, of course, always occasions two responses.  More than occasionally, crisis leads men to desperate and shameful acts.  Yet, crisis also means an opportunity for heroism and generosity.  By all accounts, it seems that the Jesuits of Chile are responding in this second way.

Please pray that they continue to do so.


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