February 27, 2015 — If you build it, they will come: The Jesuits of Canada and the United States have orchestrated another multimedia Lenten prayer experience for Lent 2015, based on the success of last year’s Moved to Greater Love digital prayer program.
Over 21,000 users around the world are taking part in IGNITING OUR VALUES, available and refreshed daily at jesuits.org/igniting from Ash Wednesday, February 18, through Easter Sunday, April 5. IGNITING OUR VALUES is also available as a daily email or a weekly PDF file for those who prefer an off-line experience.
“We thought hard about the importance of Jesuit identity when we were planning this. What if we could encourage people to think about Ignatian values as an entry point for daily meditation during Lent?” asks Jesuit Brother Michael Breault, Director of National Vocation Promotion, who spent the better part of the past year putting the program together.
Br. Breault points out that the deciding factor for most young people who are choosing a religious order is how well the members “own” their collective religious identity. “Stats show that young people are most likely to join those religious communities whose members consistently exhibit a clear and joyous appropriation of the order’s unique identity. This being so, it’s obvious to me that when we work on clarifying our identity as Jesuits and Ignatians, we are also promoting vocations to the Society of Jesus.”
Last spring, daily reflections were solicited from men and women across the Jesuit/Ignatian spectrum. The 47 IGNITING contributors are Jesuits and lay people, friends and family, alumni, teachers, administrators, retreat directors, social workers, parish staff, spiritual directors, Ignatian partners and colleagues in mission. Their occupations range from sound editor to general contractor, from nurse to policy wonk, from lawyer to chef — a diverse group of ordinary people who share the extraordinary impact of Ignatian spirituality.
Jesuit Father Jack Bentz composed daily prayers to compliment every reflection and connect themes from the Scriptural readings to the particular Jesuit/Ignatian value under consideration.
A carefully curated selection of music, video, art, prose and poetry, as well as a special weekly focus on the Blessed Mother, will enhance the experience. Reflections and the Gospel readings will be available in Spanish and English.
It’s not too late to experience IGNITING OUR VALUES yourself. Log on to jesuits.org/igniting to join people around the world in prayerfully considering the meaning of discipleship in today’s dizzyingly distracted world.