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Friday, September 30, 2016
Cardinal give thanks for 'unlque' Jesuits
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¬†Cardinal Cormac Murphy O'Connor has praised the 'unique' role played by the British Jesuits since the days of the Counter Reformation. He was speaking at the end of a Mass held at Farm Street Church, W1, to celebrate the 200th anniversary of the Restoration of the British Province of the Society of Jesus. The congregation of over 800, made up of around 50 Jesuits, with their supporters, friends and co-workers, also heard the British Provincial encourage the members of the Province in the vital work of evangelisation. The Cardinal told the congregation that the Jesuits had been part of the history of this country "in quite a unique way" He continued : "The whole Catholic community of England and Wales, our bishops, priests and people, are grateful for the particular contribution the Jesuit community has made to evangelisation in our countries. These are difficult times, and the Church has to be innovative and brave and confident when it looks to the future in spite of all the challenges it faces. Together we must evangelise our country." "The contribution that the Catholic Church makes to our country, to this nation, is crucial," Cardinal Cormac continued. "Within the Church, the particular charism of the Society of Jesus is valued. For that I give thanks today." In his homily, the British Provincial, Fr David Smolira SJ, looked back over the past 200 years since Pope Pius VII had restored the Society of Jesus in this country. He reflected on the work done "in the service of the Church in Britain", in schools, colleges, parishes, in spiritual guidance and among the poor ≠ "work which, I am delighted to say, continues with vigour today!" Fr Smolira concluded by quoting from Pope John Paul's 1995 address to the Jesuits, and reminded his fellow Jesuits of Holy Father's mandate "to engage in the task of evangelisation with a 'missionary outreach and the promotion of a dynamic communion that extends into ecumenism, directs inter-religious dialogue, and inspires the service of human rights and peace as foundations of a civilisation of love'." Read more about the history and work of the British Jesuits on their NEW web site (launched to coincide with the Mass at Farm Street): www.jesuit.org.uk Source: Jesuit Communications Office, London
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