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The formation program of the Province/Region should promote the training of scholastics and junior priests for development of benefactor relations and the administration of projects NC 391 §1; IAG [302,303]. Training should include: a) Spirituality of fundraising b) Relationship with benefactors c) Management of resources d) Skills in managing projects and reporting/accountability.

Quoted from a letter written by the former Superior General Fr. Adolfo Nicolas

Development work in the Society of Jesus is a service to the poor for their empowerment and freedom.Its missions accord high priority to the liberation and upliftment of the poor and marginalized sections of society through various of its Strategic Interventions which calls for greater management and resource mobilisation skills tobe much more effective. One of the initiatives is to equip the Jesuits at the formation stage itself, exposing them to the changing context, orienting them on new development paradigms and facilitating them to acquire the required knowledge and skills for their future work.

In this context, a nine-day intensive summer course on 'Management of Development Programmes' was jointly organized by the Assistancy Development Office (ADO) and Secretariate for Jesuits in Social (JESA) and Patna Jesuits Society (PJS) from 22nd April to 30thApril, 2018 at Atmadarshan in Patna. Eighteen participants hailing from seven different provinces took active part in the learning process. Two Scholastics from Kenya and East Timor along with four core staff from a few social action centres of Patna Province added to the flavor of the programme. The participants benefitted immensely from the programme.

The design and planning of the programme was made in such way that the trainees are imparted both theoretical and practical knowledge. Lok Manch Project implemented by JESA on right’s-based issues across 14-provinces was chosen for field exposure and practical training. Lok Manch project is a unique experiment with 100 CSOs from Jesuit Institutions, Church Organizations and Lay Collaborators having great expertise on collaboration and networking on a larger platform.

The programme was inaugurated and inspired by Fr. Robert Athikal, Founder and Director, Tarumitra on 22nd April. The Trainees got an opportunity to make a short visit to witness the pioneering work of Tarumitra on 23rd morning.

The following main subjects relevant to the development work were covered during the training:

  • Concept and Approaches to Development, Right’s Based Approach, SDGs
  • Introduction and components of Project Management
  • Project Proposal Writing
  • Problem Analysis, Baseline Study
  • Planning Methodology, Formulation of Goal, Objectives,
  • LFA-Outcomes, Outputs, Activities,
  • Costing and Budgeting
  • Monitoring and Evaluation, Development of Indicators
  • Documentation and Report Writing

The team of resource persons consisted of Mr. Manoj Pradhan, Senior Programme Manager at ADO, Fr. Siji, Coordinator- PDOs and Mr. Vijay Parmar, Senior consultatnt of JESA. After being introduced to the  Lok Manch project, the trainees went for 3-days field visit in 5-teams to 5-partner organizations in Bihar which was very well coordinated by Fr. Anand, the Zonal Coordinator of Lok Manch for Northern Zone. Based on reporting guidelines, the trainees made excellent presentations on PPT of their experience and learning. In that session, Mr. Elmar, Representative, MISEREOR gave his feedback and shared his learning who was on a visit to Bihar Lok Manch Programme.

At the end, there was an evaluation of the programme and feedback session. The program was meticulously planned, organized and facilitated Fr. Siji and his team who worked tirelessly to make the programme a great success. The Amtadarshan team provided excellent hospitality and conference facilities. XTTI and St. Michael’s communities invited us for special tea.

Overall it was a good initiative by the ADF and PCFs to equip the scholastics with the tools and techniques of project management. It is indeed a good initiative by the Assistancy keeping in mind the development work as a service to the people. The programme was concluded with a short Patna Dharshan and a visit to the Development office, patna and an agape at St.Xavier’s Provincial House. Fr. Jose Vadassery, the Provincial of Patna gave away certificates of participation to all the participants.




13 May 2018 - 10:17

Date: April 5, 2018 Venue: Vinayalaya, Mumbai

Vincent Sekhar SJ, Secretary of JCSA for Dialogue organized a meeting of the co-ordinators of the four Jesuit provinces of the Western region along with their lay collaborators on 5th of April, 2018 in Vinayalaya, Mumbai. The co-ordinators present in the meeting were the following: Prashant Olalekar SJ of Bombay Province, Prakash Bhalerao SJ of Pune Province, Jose Panadan SJ of Gujarat Province, and MeninoGonslaves SJ of Goa Province. Besides the four coordinators, there was one lay associate from Bombay province who is a social scientist and two lay associates from the Pune Province, who work in close touch with SnehaSadan, Pune.

The meeting began with a prayerful reflection led by Vincent Sekharwhich emphasized on the theme Diversity and Tolerance. This was followed by a summary presentation on the given articles by each of the co-ordinators. After each presentation there was a moment of silence followed by a response at the feeling and discursive level.

Prashant Olalekar presented the article titled Pope Francis and Dialoguewritten by Dr. Michael Amaladoss SJ, which focused on some of the approaches and initiatives taken by Pope Francis in certain contexts with a focus on dialogue and reconciliation both in words and deeds.MeninoGonsalves gave a summary of the document Dialogue in Truth and Charity: Pastoral Orientations for Interreligious Dialogue, which was published by the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue in 2014. The group resonated with the basic openness towards dialogue shown by the above-mentioneddocument but at the sametimestrongly felt that South Asia must play a much more effective role by providing greater doctrinal clarity and practical implications. The third paper was presented by Prakash Bhalerao under the title Managing Diversity: the Challenges for India, which was a unique paper in the sense that it offered certain perspectives on managing diversity from the point view of the corporate secular world. Just as the corporate companies use diversity to gain a competitive advantage in the market, the model invitedus to promote diversity and dialogue to build a better society. Jose Panadan gave a brief summary of Sunny Jacob’s article Peace Education: the Need of the Hour, which provided concrete proposals to make peace education more effective through educational apostolate.

After the Eucharist presided over by Prakash Bhalerao, the group met again in the afternoon to listen to one another the initiatives taken by different provinces towards inter-religious dialogue. Of many positive efforts, the following are worthy to mention: the monthly magazine Niropyaedited and published by SnehaSadan; the Interreligious gatherings on Christmas and other occasions; the Interreligious Studies initiated in St. Xavier’s College; and the several activities planned and executed in an established institute like the IDCR, Chennai. Many initiatives are taken by several individuals, but sadly discontinued after the time of their departure from their places. And some centres with political overtones are at the verge of closing!

The meeting came to an end with a short presentation by Vincent Sekhar on the statement issued by the JCSA titled Contesting Hindu Rashtra: An Alternative Narrative and Strategies for Reconciliation in the New India. This document imposed a great challenge on the minorities and the well-intended citizens of India in preserving the twin-pillars of democracy and secularism, guaranteed by the Constitutions of India. The present religio-political scenario in the country called for the conviction in and promotion of the Constitutional values of liberty, equality, justice, and fellowship. But the participants generally felt that the discussed JCSA Statement on Hindu Nationalism has not really picked up in the provinces for various reasons. The West Zone meeting gave a new impetus to the participants to once again assure their individual and networked collaboration with their religious neighbours and institutions towards ensuring dialogue and harmony.

Jose Panadan, S.J.

Vincent Sekhar SJ




11 May 2018 - 16:39

3 May 2018, during the Summer Course on Interfaith Dialogue and Pilgrimage, at Henry Martyn Institute, Hyderabad, Dr. Geevarghese Yulios, the Metropolitan Bishop of the Ahmedabad Diocese of the Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church, released the books I Am Indeed Their Brother: Loving and Serving Allah’s Poor by Bob McCahill of the Maryknoll Fathers and Lord The Air Smells Good, Felicitation volume in honour of Fr. Paul Jackson S.J. edited by Anand Amaladass and Victor Edwin.

The first book by Bob McCahill is a collection of forty-two short letters written during his missionary service among Muslims in Bangladesh from 1976 to 2017. They express his dedication, joy, vivacity and tender love for the people he lived with and worked for, while building compassionate links between Christians and Muslims. Hailing from Iowa, USA he learnt the language of the people with whom he incarnated himself wholeheartedly and in sincere simplicity. Bob’s stories give colourful dramatic pictures of his encounters, his staccato conversations, spiritual experiences, emotion-filled encounters, and unending helpfulfness. He describes how he is inspired by devout Muslims and learns patience, generosity and cheerfulness. All the letters are uplifting and cement relationships between people of different ages, professions, cultures and religions.

The Felicitation volume in honour of Fr. Paul Jackson SJ is a soulful tribute to the lifetime commitment of this creative Jesuit to the cause of Muslim-Christian relations. The engaging title is taken from a text by 13th century mystic Jalal ad-Din ar-Rumi and expresses the aura of the 15 professional articles that the book contains. The introductory piece by Victor Edwin sets the tone for the reader, presenting the personal journey of Fr. Paul Jackson and his nuanced view of the range and depth of interfaith dialogue, especially dialogue between a Muslim and a Christian, as shown in this quote from Jackson: “It is abundantly clear that this whole process of dialogue requires deep Christian faith, for it is more directly focused on receiving than on giving.”  The articles are poignant and passionate, composed by professional Islamologists with academic expertise and spiritual wisdom. From Knowledge and Mercy in Mawdudi and Ibn ‘Arabi by David Immanuel Singh, and Nizamuddin to the Nations: Transnational Trajectories at the Origins of the Tablighi Jama’at by Mathew J. Kuiper, and Jesus and Mary in Tafsir Muqatil Ibn Sulayman by F. Zannini, to The Growth of Islamophobia (Fear of Islam) in contemporary German Society as a challenge to the Christians living there by Christian W. Troll, and A Christian-Islam Conversation on Climate Change by Francis Gonsalves we get a panoramic view of the theological, ideological, cultural, socio-political, psycho-philosophical and practical dimensions of Christian-Muslim relations. The book concludes with a list of Jackson’s 8 books and 90 articles.

Victor Edwin SJ

11 May 2018 - 16:16

In an air conditioned forty seater bus, with two security guards, two drivers and one manager, I was the only passenger to travel from Delhi to Lahore on 23rd April. That was not all. There was an escort vehicle with siren to clear the way for ‘DOSTI’ bus between the two neighbouring countries to reach its destination. It dawned on me then: we need to spend such a lot of resources to safeguard enmity! Thankfully the return journey in a Pakistani bus had around 25 passengers; but the rest of the arrangements remained the same. Indeed a journey down the memory lane of struggles together for independence and then, battle it out to live as ‘enemies’ ever after! At the designated bus ‘adda’ Renato and Mr. Nadeem, a lawyer friend of Pakistani Jesuit community, received me and drove me to Loyola Hall in Lahore. The Jesuit contingent, besides Renato, consisted of Frs. Maria Sebastian, Jeyaraj Rashiah, former provincial’s of Sri Lanka and Fr. Juan Carlos, (Islam specialist), Fr. John Imran – the only Pakistani Jesuit, three scholastics Chamika Nipun (whom we provincials met in Vavuniya in Sri Lanka) now a regent in Pakistan and Asim and Amir – two Pakistani scholastics – and six candidates. Renato (superior) had worked out a schedule that enabled me to meet all Jesuits individually and as a group, besides visits to our three schools. A well equipped Islam specialized library, the center for non-violent communication (NVC), multi-purpose hall and other facilities for conducting sessions – all located in the same campus – provided space for a rich combination of ministries, of this ‘tiny’ but dynamic group of Jesuits in Pakistan in the historic city of Lahore. The three schools, named St. Mary’s, cater to about 2000 children, boys and girls, hailing from lower middle class and in locations bustling with life and people. Imran and Renato look after these schools, as animators rather than administrators. Three lay people administer the schools as principals, while the Jesuits animate the schools with general guidelines based on Jesuit educational principals. The same is true with the research and NVC centers. Lahore model could challenge us! Fr. Kalathil had made in-roads into these and other schools, inviting children to cultivate friendship beyond borders. Are these children showing us a way forward? I had occasion to meet with Jesuit associates at a session organized by the Peace group led by advocate Anthony Nadeem on the theme of Eucharist and Peace building. The table-fellowship, of which Eucharist was a continuation, builds peace, while breaking down boundaries. While Jeyaraj continues his writing of Pakistan Jesuit History, he also caters to the spiritual animation of the clergy and the religious. Maria Sebastian guides the NVC initiative, and Sch. Chamika teaches Yoga in the schools besides his expert support through computer science.  In the common meeting with the Jesuits, we dwelt on promoting vocations and strengthening formation for which a formula of support to Sri Lanka from India and from the former to Pakistan was proposed. We also reflected on collaboration with Indonesia in Islam ministry and formation. JWL and JRS could be initiated in Pakistan if there are personnel. There are many possibilities and opportunities to support Pakistan mission if only we tickle our imagination and creativity! All the struggle and waiting for the journey to Lahore was worth it! For zealous Jesuits, borders are spaces to traverse to discover the emerging possibilities! The Lord of surprises is around the corner, we can be sure!

Fr. George Pattery SJ  

2 May 2018 - 06:13

By Joachim Teigen

The Council of Cardinal Advisors assembled with Pope Francis in Rome on Wednesday for the third and last day of their 24th session.

Apostolic Constitution

A large part of their work has been dedicated to the draft of a new Apostolic Constitution of the Roman Curia, which will be submitted to the Holy Father for his final approval. The topics making up the new Constitution include the Curia’s service to the Holy Father and the local Churches, the pastoral character of their activities, the establishing and tasks of a Third Section of the Secretariat of State, and the proclamation of the Gospel and the missionary spirit as guiding principles for the entire Curia’s activities.

Protection of minors

Cardinal Sean O’Malley presented to the Cardinals the efforts that have been made to protect minors and vulnerable adults in the Church. He also made reference to the recent meeting between the Survivor Advisory Panel and the Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors, and stressed the importance of listening to the experiences of abuse victims and having their stories as a starting point.

Over the last days sessions have taken place in the mornings and afternoons, and the next meeting of the Council will take place from 11th to 13th of June.

Vatican News

26 Apr 2018 - 18:13

PATNA: Hundreds of students from city schools participated in the pre-celebration of World Earth Day organized by Tarumitra, an NGO, on its premises at Digha on Saturday. They marched to the Panchavati forest area of Tarumitra and performed ‘aarti’ and applied ‘chandan and tika’ to the trees. They also took the ‘green pledge’ to take care of environment. Patna mayor Sita Sahu inaugurated the sprinkler system at Tarumitra’s organic farm for water conservation with the help of solar energy. The event was also graced by Femina Miss India finalist and winner of India’s top next model 2016 edition Pranati Prakash.

Students planted saplings and prepared bird-feeders. They sang earth songs and performed dance and skits, displayed posters on ‘Plastic free Bihar’ and ‘Save Mother Earth’. Speaking on the occasion, Sahu said students and the elders have to take collective responsibility of taking care of resources and planet.

    e students of Radiant International School, Mt Carmel High School, Notre Dame Academy, Delhi Public School, Don Bosco Academy, St Dominic Savio’s High School, St Xavier’s High School, Leed’s Asian School, May Flower, Organic Kids, Baldwin Academy, Veena Vidya Niketan and S R Vidyapeeth, besides Jawaharlal Nehru University (Delhi), St Xavier’s College Patna and AN College participated in the event.

    Tarumitra founder Fr Robert Athickal, organic farmer Margaret Molomoo, Shashi Darshan, D N Prasad and Fakhri were also present on the occasion.

    22 Apr 2018 - 18:24

    Monday, 16th April 2018

    We begin this gathering praying to Lord Jesus to help us “to live one day at a time”.

    Then the DNC scholastics in an innovative way helped us to connect with one another through songs and we ended up singing “Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam” in a symphony of various languages of our Provinces – a symbolic gesture of “unity in diversity”.

    Father POSA highlighted about 16 Key Moments of SA Assistancy and the house added 5 more moments which are nothing but the Graced Moments in our life as a Corporate Body.

    In the concluding prayer we asked the Lord “to shepherd us” through the days to come. I am sure you will agree with me that the Lord has answered our prayer.

    Tuesday, 17th April 2018

    After the prayer by Jagdish, George Cordeiro and Dinesh Braganza introduced the theme for the day: Connect through Inner Journey. To facilitate the process of our sharing, Fr. POSA familiarized us with the method of Spiritual Conversation.

    After personal prayer, we met in 8 different groups and shared about our interior movements. The three level sharing was a helix like winding staircase that took us down to our depths where we felt connected.

    I will summarize the outcome of our sharing in three points:

    1. We became aware of the various moments of our life and many of us were overwhelmed by the present socio-political situation in India today.
    2. These elicited at one level “normal” “human” responses of disturbance, fear, anxiety, worry, helplessness, anger, questioning, confusion etc.
    3. At a deeper level all of us shared our consolations: despite the dark and difficult moments we have always experienced the mysterious guiding Hand of the Lord, filling us with a deep sense of gratitude on the one hand, and with strong hope and courage as we face the future.

    After this George Cordeiro did something beautiful: He asked us to consider, “What is God calling us to do today?”  It was in the same tone in which Adolfo Nicolas had called us to reflect as he convoked the GC 36: “What is Christ, the Eternal King calling us to do today?”

    Our responses could be summarized as follows: God is inviting us to move out of our comfort zone and take up the challenges, collaborate and net-work with others, move beyond hopelessness and make a qualitative difference to the situation in India with a pro-active attitude.

    The film (The Ultimate Gift) in the evening brought home the message that challenges in life are ultimately gifts from God to recognize and activate the God given strengths and resources.

    JossieD’Mello’s scholarly input helped us to understand “inner journey” as the heart of Ignatian spirituality. Combining Aloysius Pieris’ Four Types of Religious and Margaret Silf’s Three Levels of Self (Where am I? How am I? and Who am I?) he presented the evolution of Ignatius as a “people oriented introspectionist”to such an extent that Ignatius would see as God would see, that is from the perspective of “who I am” – “another man with another mind”.

    Connecting Jossie’s input andBhausaheb’s homily I see Ignatius utilizing “mirror neurons” in his contemplation of the Johnine Jesus and becoming like Jesus.  [Here I am taking a certain liberty in interpreting Jn. 14.6: “’I AM’ is the truth, way and life”.]

    Francis Gonsalves summed up the process of the day in terms of A to F of Connecting.

    The concluding prayer for the day, conducted by SatyaNilayam community, concentrated on the threefold connection in terms of

    Connecting High = stewardship

    Connecting Wide = solidarity

    Connecting Deep = spirituality


    Wednesday, 18th April, 2018

    After connecting collaboration should be obvious and easy. After a brief opening prayer by Tom Katathara, Mike Thanaraj introduced the theme of the day in terms of (what I would like to call) “Technology of Collaboration”. Based on the Positive Psychology of Martin Seligman, Mike presented the building materials for collaboration

    PERMA analysis

    Signature strengths

    Core Competencies of a team/organization

    Strength based organizations

    Secretes of Team Work

    Enabling conditions for Collaboration


    After personal prayer we followed the same three-level sharing method of Spiritual Conversation in our respective communities. Then we worked on the “Strengths to Collaboration Matrix” worksheet. It was an excellent exercise in articulating the four enabling conditions (Compelling Direction, Strong Structure, Supportive Context and Shared Mindset) that already exist in our attempts to collaborate with others.  The idea of the exercise, I guess, was to acknowledge the positive strengths we already have manifested in collaborating and to build on them and enhance them.

    This model, I am sure, will be a great help when we undertake new ventures in collaboration in the future.


    William Sequeira, in his homily during the Eucharist, highlighted the spirituality of collaboration in terms of “humility”. He elaborated on the Pauline text of Phil 2.1-11 that the “hallowness”(the sacredness) of our communities (which is the manifestation of collaboration with one another) depends on the “hollowness” (the emptying) of our ego.


    The film (Coach Carter) in the evening was a visual poetry on the tenacity and character of a man who was committed to build up a team and their wellbeing.


    If the morning session helped to articulate our strengths to collaborate, the evening session moderated by Edward, in the spirit of Magis, enabled us to voice our concerns to take collaboration to further depths.  The scope of the session was not so much to solve all the problems within a matter of an hour, but to become aware of them as a body and to commit to address them as a body eventually.

    DenzilFernandes, besides summing up the proceedings of the day, volunteered to present some features of the Culture of Collaboration – sharing, discipline, action-reflection process, common goal/purpose, mutual respect and mutual interest etc.

    In the context of Denzil’s sharing I like to highlight a point that was expressed during the course of the day that the formation of religious men and women in general and of Jesuits in particular does not prepare for collaboration.  Therefore the one challenge before this august body which deals predominantly with formation is to integrate excellence with humility – to focus on the Glory of God rather than personal glory.

    The evening prayer conducted by the community of ISI and VJ Delhi focussed on the theme of collaboration with inspiring texts from the recent GC 36.

    Thursday, 19th April, 2018

    Connection led to collaboration and collaboration must lead to celebration. As one member of the group (Tom Venad) had defined celebration is not so much partying, fun and frolic but giving expression to the vitality and vibrancy of life.  And that is the consequence of synergythat results from collaboration, in fact, another word for collaboration. 

    Now the question may arise as to what guidelines have to do with celebration.  I hope it may not sound too much of a contrived exegesis if I cite the text from Dt 30.15-20 where Moses shows the connection between (celebration of) life and law.


    Keith refreshed our memories of what we had read already from the hard copy of the guidelines which were given to us right at the beginning of our gathering, for our reflection and prayer.  As usual, after personal prayer we followed the method of three level sharing. And in the plenary session Raj Irudaya after clarification helped to consolidate the guidelines.


    The overall reception of the guidelines has been positive appreciation and a sense of ownership.  And in the spirit of Magis valuable suggestions have been made to make the guidelines even more demanding and challenging so as to make us men of the Third Degree of Humility.

    I cannot leave out the three evening Table Fellowship we shared here at PG Block, at DNC and at Papal Seminary during which we gave concrete expression to the Connection, Collaboration and Celebration.

    All in all the three day program was well planned, excellently executed, marvellously participated and now as we enjoy the fruits of these three days of deliberations our hearts are filled with deep gratitude first to the Lord, then to the organizers and MCs and to one another as Friends in the Lord.

    Let us keep our interior journey going which will enable us to remain connected which in turn will enhance our collaboration among ourselves built on our significant strengths which will lead to the celebration of our life as a corporate body aided by the inspiring and challenging guidelines.

    The Three days of deliberations concluded with the Thanks Giving Holy Eucharist Offered by Fr. George Pattery SJ (POSA).

    By M. I RAJ, S.J. (GUJ)

    (For photos go to the gallery)  

    18 Apr 2018 - 19:33

    In keeping with the spirit of GC 36 and as a follow-up of the recommendations given in the recent letters of Fr.General on Discernment in Common, the Assistancy organized a workshop on ‘Discernment in Common and Apostolic Planning’ for the representative Jesuits from the Provinces of the North and Central Zones. It was held in Navjivan Renewal Centre, Delhi from 6th evening to 8th evening April 2018. Twenty-five Jesuits from the provinces of Darjeeling, Delhi, Jamshedpur, Madya Pradesh, Patna, Ranchi and Nepal Region participated in it. Frs. Siji, Brian Pereira and Raj Irudaya were the animators of the workshop.

    The participants were helped to reflect on the deliberations of the first fathers in Venice and the development of discernment in common in the Society after Venice till now. The letters of Fr.General on Discernment in Common and Universal Apostolic Preferences were also shared and reflected upon. The method of spiritual conversation was used for group sharings. The participants also went through an exercise of choosing universal apostolic preferences. They were also introduced to the aim, method and process of apostolic planning. The active participation and involvement of the participants made the workshop very fruitful. The participants were all given the copies of the resource materials used during the workshop. They also felt confident to conduct this workshop in their respective provinces.

    We sincerely thank all the Provincials who had sent their men to this workshop. We are also much grateful to Fr. George Peter, the Director of NRC and the administrator Fr. Anil Minj for having helped us to conduct this workshop in a conducive ambience. The same workshop will be also conducted for the representative Jesuits from the Provinces of South and West zones from 4th evening to 6th evening, May 2018 in Indian Social Institute, Bengaluru.

    • Raj Irudaya, S.J.

    For the Organizing Team


    16 Apr 2018 - 13:48

    Ecology and Global Citizenship and Human Rights Educational Seminar

    The Jesuit Education Association of South Asia (JEASA) organised a 2 full day consultation on Ecology and Global Citizenship programme Consultation for the Zonal Educational Coordinators and the PCEs of the Central Provinces was held on 14-15 April, 2018, at Indian Social Institute (ISI), New Delhi. ADO was the partner of the programme. Mr. Lourd Baptista, Fr. Sunny Jacob SJ, and the PCEs prepared the seminar and prepared the action plan for the Assistancy. Fr. Robert Athikal SJ (PAT), Fr. Lancy SJ and Mr. Jothi (GUJ)were the resource persons for Ecology while Dr. Aloys SJ and Dr.Cyril SJ (MDU) were the resource persons for Global citizenship and HRE.

    ECOLOGICAL Prodramme: LEAF Model

    We, the humanity as a whole, have let down our future generation with broken home; the earth they have inherited is polluted and on the verge of total destruction. For the change to be brought in, it’s important that we train them to be the agents of change for a greener earth. LEAF program initiated by Gujarat Jesuit Ecology Mission & Green the Blue Charitable Trust is primarily a leadership and environmental education program with innovative pedagogy. The program enables the children to learn about key environmental issues and develop solutions to mitigate them. Some of the sustainable practices they learn are put into use in the schools and at their houses.

    LEAF program thus was designed and experimented as a pilot program in 2014 with 25 students at St. Joseph’s High school, Vadodara. We scaled up this program in a gradual manner every year and this year we have introduced it in eight schools situated at different parts of Gujarat. In the year 2017 to 2018, 401 students are participating in the LEAF program.

    LEAF program consists of eight day long workshops conducted within a span of ten months. The workshops are conducted outside the classroom often in places such as organic farm, bio-reserves, solar hubs, herbal garden and institutions where sustainable practices are implemented. In this way, students get firsthand experience of eco-friendly practices.  TARU MITRA experience too was shared by Robert, which is a well known model in India.


    Saint Ignatius of Loyola strongly believed:

    • Faith must translate into working for justice.
    • No true expression of faith where concerns for justice and human dignity are lacking.

    Social justice

    • At the heart of Ignatian spirituality.
    • It tells us that, when people are suffering hardship and oppression, their business is our business.
    • It calls us to open our eyes to the needs of others who may be suffering due to the way we are living our lives and to respond accordingly.
    •  It calls us to be faithful, to be trustworthy, to be compassionate and to stand up against injustices we see in the world around us.


    • We are all CITIZENS of this Earth which God had given to each one of us
    • Each of us has and equal RIGHT to live a life of DIGNITY

    This calls for holding our Governments accountable to

    • the Constitutions and form of Government that ensures Equality, Justice and Fratertnity
    • Care for our Earth as it is our only HOME

    Exercise our GLOBAL CITIZENSHIP and make a Commitment that every person on the face of this earth enjoys his/her Citizenship

    GLOBAL CITIZENSHIP: Introduction

    • Explore different definitions of Global Citizenship and
    • Understand why it is important to teach and accompany our students to become global citizens.
    • Brief look at Global Citizenship in the context of the Society of Jesus.

    This introduction will serve as a foundation for the remaining modules which explore important topics within Global Citizenship Education. 


    • Human Rights and Global GoalsExplore the themes of Human Rights, the Sustainable Development Goals and Catholic Social Teaching.
    • These themes serve as a framework for us to work together as Global Citizens and to respond to the Social Injustices of our world.

    This module will be an important introduction to the next module on Social Justice. 

    Social Justice

    • Consider other intrinsic concepts which are related to the different dimensions of the human being, to society and to their dignity and well-being. 
    • Values that we believe should be implicit in our behaviour (way of proceeding), in the dynamics and social structures which guarantee that dignity and well-being for all people are a matter of individual responsibility and commitment, as well as the responsibility and commitment of the community and of institutions.  
    • In this sense, for the Society of Jesus, justice is placed at the heart of its mission, obeying the promotion of it from the service of faith which is required, and in the continued and committed search to build bridges, particularly for the benefit of those most excluded in society.
    • Will deal with following concepts and their correlation:
    • Poverty,
    • Peace and Reconciliation, and
    • Human Mobility (or Forced Migration).
    • All these from the lens of Human Rights

    Right to Education


    (1) Everyone has the right to education. Education shall be free, at least in the elementary and fundamental stages. Elementary education shall be compulsory. Technical and professional education shall be made generally available and higher education shall be equally accessible to all on the basis of merit.

    (2) Education shall be directed to the full development of the human personality and to the strengthening of respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms. It shall promote understanding, tolerance and friendship among all nations, racial or religious groups, and shall further the activities of the United Nations for the maintenance of peace.

    (3) Parents have a prior right to choose the kind of education that shall be given to their children.

    Education is a fundamental human right and an essential factor for the fulfilment of other rights –

    • Enables children to develop their full potential to lead a full and productive life
    • It is the primary responsibility of every society.
    • The benefits of education are not exhausted in those who receive them, but extend to society as a whole and affect very different dimensions of progress, empowerment and collective well-being.
    • This module concentrates on understanding the importance of education as a Human Right for all people and on what we understand as quality of education – History of Right, Right to Quality Education, What can we do?

    Caring for the Common Home

    What kind of world do we want to leave for the next generation?

    • A question to answer in the context of climate change and its effects on livelihood. The world we inherited is not the world we will hand over.
    • UN has taken the lead and so has Pope Francis and Jesuits – intrinsic to Ignatian Spirituality
    • UN data of last two decades - Average global temperatures rose by 0.85 degrees Celsius, average global sea levels rose by 19 cm and emissions of carbon dioxide worldwide have increased by almost 50 per cent since 1990. These have far reaching impacts on people’s lives everywhere.
    • However those who will suffer the most will be the world’s poorest, most vulnerable communities.
    • Commitment to address climate change - December 12th 2015, adopted the Paris Agreement on climate change.
    • Not only nations but also individuals and groups are concerned and so on September 25th 2015, countries adopted a set of goals to end poverty, protect the planet, and ensure prosperity for all as part of a new sustainable development agenda.
    • Each goal has specific targets to be achieved over the next 15 years.” This is an important step; an evaluation of these goals demonstrates the urgency and importance of caring for our common home. The United Nations envisages that all people will have to contribute to achieve these goals.
    • Pope Francis -  Laudato Si: Caring for our Common Home, presents his concerns and emphasises the need for all to understand the possible repercussions of these changes and initiate necessary interventions to address these concerns. 
    • The Module will look at the call from Pope Francis and will examine the relationship of Ignatian Spirituality and the Environment.
    • Having explored Social Justice earlier, it will now also look at Ecological Justice and explore actions to be implemented as responsible global citizens to maintain and sustain our common home.

    Sunny Jacob SJ


    15 Apr 2018 - 13:50

    Pope Francis released an apostolic exhortation in which he aims to “repropose” the universal call to holiness – which he says is the mission of life for every person.

    Published April 9, Gaudete et exsultate, or “Rejoice and be glad,” is Francis’ third apostolic exhortation. It is subtitled “On the call to holiness in the contemporary world.”

    The 44-page exhortation explains that holiness is the mission of every Christian, and gives practical advice for living out the call to holiness in ordinary, daily life, encouraging the practice of the Beatitudes and performing works of mercy.

    Pope Francis gives a general audience address on the Mass last month (CNS)

    • “I like to contemplate the holiness present in the patience of God’s people: in those parents who raise their children with immense love, in those men and women who work hard to support their families, in the sick, in elderly religious who never lose their smile.”
    • “Holiness is the most attractive face of the church.”
    • “The important thing is that each believer discern his or her own path, that they bring out the very best of themselves, the most personal gifts that God has placed in their hearts, rather than hopelessly trying to imitate something not meant for them.”
    • “In times when women tended to be most ignored or overlooked, the Holy Spirit raised up saints whose attractiveness produced new spiritual vigor and important reforms in the church.”
    • “We are frequently tempted to think that holiness is only for those who can withdraw from ordinary affairs to spend much time in prayer. That is not the case.”
    • “We are all called to be holy by living our lives with love and by bearing witness in everything we do, wherever we find ourselves.”
    • “This holiness to which the Lord calls you will grow through small gestures.”
    • “Do not be afraid of holiness. It will take away none of your energy, vitality or joy.”
    • “Thanks be to God, throughout the history of the church it has always been clear that a person’s perfection is measured not by the information or knowledge they possess, but by the depth of their charity.”
    • “Jesus explained with great simplicity what it means to be holy when he gave us the Beatitudes (Mt 5:3-12; Lk 6:20-23).”
    • “Giving and forgiving means reproducing in our lives some small measure of God’s perfection, which gives and forgives superabundantly.”
    •  “We need to think of ourselves as an army of the forgiven. All of us have been looked upon with divine compassion.”
    • “The saints are not odd and aloof, unbearable because of their vanity, negativity and bitterness. The Apostles of Christ were not like that.”
    • “In this call to recognize him in the poor and the suffering, we see revealed the very heart of Christ, his deepest feelings and choices, which every saint seeks to imitate.”
    • “It is true that the primacy belongs to our relationship with God, but we cannot forget that the ultimate criterion on which our lives will be judged is what we have done for others.”
    • “The saints do not waste energy complaining about the failings of others; they can hold their tongue before the faults of their brothers and sisters and avoid the verbal violence that demeans and mistreats others.”
    • “Christian joy is usually accompanied by a sense of humor.”
    • “The saints surprise us, they confound us, because by their lives they urge us to abandon a dull and dreary mediocrity.”
    • “A community that cherishes the little details of love, whose members care for one another and create an open and evangelizing environment, is a place where the risen Lord is present, sanctifying it in accordance with the Father’s plan.”
    • “I do not believe in holiness without prayer, even though that prayer need not be lengthy or involve intense emotions.”
    • “We should not think of the devil as a myth, a representation, a symbol, a figure of speech or an idea. This mistake would lead us to let down our guard, to grow careless and end up more vulnerable.”
    •  “The devil does not need to possess us. He poisons us with the venom of hatred, desolation, envy and vice. When we let down our guard, he takes advantage of it to destroy our lives, our families and our communities.”
    • “Discernment is not about discovering what more we can get out of this life, but about recognizing how we can better accomplish the mission entrusted to us at our baptism.”
    • — “Let us ask the Holy Spirit to pour out upon us a fervent longing to be saints for God’s greater glory, and let us encourage one another in this effort.”.

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    11 Apr 2018 - 16:01