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Office of Mission and Identity Programming

Ignatius Loyola, the founder of the Society of Jesus, sought and saw God in all things and believed himself called to be a co-laborer with God. His vision of the world lies at the heart of the Jesuit method of teaching, research and service.

Saint Louis University’s Division for Mission and Identity invites you to discover what it means to work at a Jesuit university and the difference it makes to your profession and field of study.

Pop-up Pilgrimage

Though SLU faculty and staff are surrounded by our great Jesuit, Catholic heritage, the sights and places that mean so much to our history and spirituality are often overlooked or forgotten during our busy work days. Our series of mini-pilgrimages seeks to remind community members about SLU's fascinating mission and identity, as well as the fact that our journey through life is an ongoing pilgrimage.

Faculty and staff should regularly check Newslink and our Facebook page for announcements about Pop-up Pilgrimage experiences. Pilgrimages are led by David Suwalsky, S.J. Past pilgrimage sites include:

  • St. Francis Xavier College Church bell tower, choir loft and gallery walkway
  • Cupples House
  • Fusz Hall and Museum of Contemporary Religious Art
  • Pius XII Library and University Archives

Fall 2022 Mission and Identity Book Club 

Join us as we read "With God in Russia," a memoir by American-born Jesuit Walter Ciszek, S.J., who spent 23 years in the Soviet Union, including 15 years of imprisonment during the height of the Cold War. His story is a powerful and inspiring witness to patience, endurance and the faith that sustained him.

"A story about the relationship between God and a person who wanted to give himself totally to God's service." — James Martin, S.J. 

Opening Session October 6 at noon by Zoom. We will be joined by David Borgmeyer, Ph.D., a scholar in Russian Studies. Dr. Borgmeyer will set the scene for us: how Russia became the Soviet Union and what led up to the Cold War.

The closing luncheon will be held at noon on November 17 in the Sinquefield State Room on the fourth floor of DuBourg Hall. Dr. Borgmeyer will share his experience of living in Russia and some of his insights into the book, followed by a time for questions. 

To register and receive your book, complete the registration form at: https://bit.ly/3pgUA5H 

Fall 2022 Friday Mass and Speaker Series

The Division of Mission and Identity is hosting a Friday Mass and Speaker Series this fall.  The series will once again focus on the Universal Apostolic Preferences (UAP) of the Society of Jesus. The Superior General of the Society of Jesus has invited all who are partners in mission to pay special attention to these four vital needs in the coming years. Our series this fall will explore four ways Saint Louis University lives the Universal Apostolic Preferences.

All events will be held at Saint Francis Xavier College Church beginning with noon Mass, followed by a lecture and lunch in the Ballroom.

Register for the Friday Mass and Speaker Series     

For questions about the Friday Mass and Speaker Series, email jesuitmission@slu.edu.

September 9: Working Together to Care for the Earth, Our Common Home

Rachel Rimmerman - Water Institute at Saint Louis University and Billikens for Clean Water, Student Organization

October 7: Walking With the Poor and Outcasts of the World, and Those Whose Dignity Has Been Violated, the Mission of Reconciliation and Justice

Jeff Smith, Executive Director, Missouri Workforce Housing Association, Consultant, Office of Mission and Identity

November 4 : To Accompany Young People in the Creation of a Hope-Filled Future

Cristina McGroarty, M.S.N., RN, Associate Professor, Trudy Busch Valentine School of Nursing, and Erin Fitzpatrick, M.T.S. South Campus Minister

December 9: Showing the Way to God Through the Spiritual Exercises and Their Practice of Discernment

Carol Ackels, J.D., M.A. Theology and Leadership, Director of the Ignatian Spirituality Institute, Retreat Director and Spiritual Director in the Ignatian Tradition

Previous Events (Fall 2021 and Spring 2022)

Friday, February 4

Apostolic Preference: To Accompany Young People in the Creation of a Hope-Filled Future

Debra Lohe, Ph.D., Associate Provost

Dr. Lohe has served at the Director of the Paul C. Reinert, S.J. Center for Transformative teaching and held the position of interim vice president of student development. She is recognized for her dedication to the care of students, ensuring that their academic experience reflects the Ignatian Jesuit characteristic of cura personalis, "care of the whole person", mind, body and spirit. Dr. Lohe offers the reflection followed by a time for questions.

Watch the Recorded Session

Friday, March 4

Apostolic Preference: To Walk With the Poor, the Outcasts of the World, Those Whose Dignity Has Been Violated, in a Mission of Reconciliation and Justice

Louis Hotop, S.J., Associate Pastor, San Pedro Catholic Church and Brian Strassburger, S.J., Casa Miguel Pro

Both presenters are Billikens and now serve the Diocese of Brownville, Texas. Their ministry is at the U.S. border responding to the pastoral needs in the area with a particular focus on the migrant community. They share their experience of walking with the poor and outcasts of the world.

Watch the Recorded Session

Friday, April 1

Apostolic Preference: Working Together to Care for the Earth, our Common Home

  • Fr. Matthew Baugh, S.J., Director, Catholic Studies
  • Ben DeFoy, Ph.D., Professor, Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, Center for Sustainability
  • Christy Hicks, Campus Minister

Renewing the Earth: Living Laudato si in the year of Ignatius. Our presenters speak about Saint Louis University's Laudato si initiative.

Watch the Recorded Session

Friday, May 13

Apostolic Preference: To Show the Way to God Through the Spiritual Exercises and Discernment

Kevin Burke, S.J., Vice President for Mission at Regis University

Watch the Recorded Session

Friday, September 3

Collaborate in the Care of our Common Home

Terri Rebmann, Ph.D., R.N., CIC, FAPIC
Director Public Health, Epidemiology and Biostatistics
Rebmann is an advisor to University President Fred P. Pestello, Ph.D., on COVID-19.

Dr. Rebmann was instrumental in helping lead the University’s response to the pandemic, allowing SLU to stay open and mostly in person throughout the 2020-2021 academic school year. She shares her reflections on the considerations and decisions that were made to care for each other and our common home.

Watch the Recorded Session

Friday, October 15

To Accompany Young People in the Creation of a Hope-filled Future

Dan Finucane, Ph.D.
Associate Professor, Theological Studies

Professor Finucane has accompanied SLU students for many years with a joy and hope drawn from his years of being an Ignatian scholar and mentor.

Watch the Recorded Session

Friday, November 19

To Walk with the Poor, the Outcasts of the World, those whose Dignity has been Violated, in a Mission of Reconciliation and Justice.

Diego Abente
Director, Casa de Salud
Mr. Abente is the president and CEO of Casa de Salud.

Casa de Salud provides primary health care for uninsured patients and delivered more than 10,000 services last year to those facing cultural, linguistic and financial barriers to care, officials said. The organization serves patients from over 90 countries and across 38 counties in both Missouri and Illinois.

Watch the Recorded Session

Friday, December 3

To show the way to God through the Spiritual Exercises and Discernment

Fr. Hung Pham, S.J.
Director, Office of Ignatian Spirituality

To open the Ignatian Year, Fr. Provincial Thomas P. Greene has established an Office of Ignatian Spirituality (OIS) for the Jesuits USA Central and Southern (UCS) Province and named Fr. Pham its new director.

Watch the Recorded Session

Other Recent Speakers and Topics

  • Craig Adams, Ph.D., Parks College of Engineering, Billikens for Clean Water - Belize
  • Matthew Baugh, S.J., Saint Francis Xavier College Church, Surprising Insights on Governance from Pope Francis
  • Matthew Broom, M.D., School of Medicine, Pediatrics: Community Engagement in an Academic Health Center
  • David Brown, S.J., Vatican Observatory, The Catholic Church and the Vatican: A Long Tradition of Astronomy
  • Craig Boyd, Ph.D., School for Professional Studies, Reading the Lord of the Rings through an Ignatian Lens
  • Sara L. Coffin, Ph.D., College for Public Health and Social Justice, Urban Planning - Why Planning Matters: The Role of Citizens in Promoting a Just Community
  • Christopher Duncan, Ph.D., College of Arts and Sciences, Individualism, Personalism, the Common Good, and America
  • Claire Gilbert, Ph.D., College of Arts and Sciences, Early Jesuit Missions to Islamic and Eastern Christian Lands
  • Rachel Lindsey, Ph.D., College of Arts and Sciences, Lived Religion
  • Petruta Lipan, Ph.D., SLU Museums and Galleries, Why Art Matters
  • Ronny O'Dwyer, S.J., Billiken Teacher Corps, To Teach as Jesus Did: Reflections from the Catholic School Vineyard
  • Mark Ruff, Ph.D., College of Arts and Sciences, Religious Option as an "Option": Reflections on Charles Taylor's A Secular Age
  • Molly Schaller, Ph.D., School of Education, The College Student Experience: Why the SOPHOMORE Year May Be So Important
  • Molly Schaller, Ph.D., School of Education, College Student Life: The Role of Meaning and Purpose

2022-2023MAGIS Brown Bag Lunch Series

Bring your lunch and join us at noon in the Pere Marquette Gallery on the second floor of DuBourg Hall  for a reflection and discussion on "Magis."

  • September 14: Becoming Persons for and with Others
  • October 12: Leading from Mission
  • November 15: Ignatian Prayer
  • December 14: St. Ignatius and SLU's Mission Today
  • January 12: Integrating Spirituality and Action (South Campus)
  • February 15: The Ignatian Pedagogical Paradigm, Explained
  • March 8: Discernment of Spirits
  • April 13: The Intersection of Mission and DICE
  • May 10: The Jesuit University in a Divided World

Fall 2022 Introduction to the Spiritual Exercises

North Campus

Bring your lunch and join us at noon in Busch Student Center, Room 254, for a Tuesday lunchtime series.

  • October 4: The Principle and Foundation and Imagination
  • October 11: The Incarnation and Discernment
  • October 18: The Paschal Mystery and Consolation
  • October 25: Our Life in Christ and Contemplation

South Campus

At the School of Nursing, the Introduction to the Spiritual Exercises will be offered from 12-1 p.m. in Room 234 on the following dates. Bring your lunch!

  • Monday, November 7: The Principle and Foundation & Discernment of Spirits
  • Monday, November 21: Consolation and Contemplation

School of Law

At the School of Law, the Introduction to the Spiritual Exercises will be offered at noon, location to be determined.  Bring your lunch!

  • October 3: The Principle and Foundation and Imagination
  • October 10: The Incarnation and Discernment
  • October 17: The Paschal Mystery and Consolation
  • October 31: Our Life in Christ and Contemplation

Upcoming Retreats 

Retreats provide an opportunity to deepen your awareness of yourself, other people and the world around you. They enable the process of clarifying what is essential in your life from what is merely "the business of living.” The Office of Mission and Identity provides retreats for faculty and staff each semester. Please send questions to jesuitmission@slu.edu.

  •  December 8, 2022: Advent by Twilight. More information to follow.

Ignatian Lunch

Each semester, the Office of Mission and Identity invites members of the University community to deepen their understanding of SLU's Ignatian vision and their commitment to its Jesuit mission by attending the Ignatian Lunch. Guest speakers will present on a topic as it relates to the Jesuit mission while attendees enjoy fellowship and a meal. Please send questions to jesuitmission@slu.edu.

Liturgy

Throughout the year, the Office of Mission and Identity celebrates Mass for a selection of Holy Days and special dates on the Jesuit or University calendar. All members of the SLU community are invited to join us for the Feast of St. Ignatius of Loyola, the Mass of the Holy Spirit, Founders Day, and many other special occasions.

Conversations Roundtable

The magazine Conversations on Jesuit Higher Education examines issues related to life and teaching on the campuses of the 28 Jesuit colleges and universities in the United States. Each semester, faculty and staff gather for roundtable discussion sessions facilitated by SLU colleagues.

The sessions are co-sponsored by the Division of Mission and Identity and the Center for Teaching Excellence.

Read the Current Issue of Conversations

New Employee Orientation Presentation

During the monthly New Employee Orientation provided by SLU Human Resources, a member of the Mission and Identity staff introduces new community members to Ignatian spirituality, the history of the Society of Jesus, and the Jesuit educational mission. This presentation seeks to help new employees understand how their individual role helps carry out SLU's mission while also ensuring a personal formative experience during their service.

Ignatian Conversation

May 20, 2021, marked the 500th anniversary of the cannonball injury that led to St. Ignatius of Loyola's conversion from nobleman and soldier to pilgrim and spiritual master. To commemorate this, the Society of Jesus is celebrating an Ignatian Year. The Year began in May and continued through July of 2022, concluding on St. Ignatius' feast day. The Office of Mission and Identity hosted "Ignatian Conversation" as a way to get to know the Jesuits who serve the Mission of the University through their vocation as Jesuits, men who have given their life to the Mission of Ignatius.

About Jesuit Formation and Scholastics at SLU
  • February 16, 2022: Jesuit formation and Scholastics at SLU

    We are blessed at Saint Louis University to have Jesuits in many stages of formation, including a House of Studies for third-, fourth-, and fifth-year Jesuits. Join us as we talk with Steven Schoenig, S.J., SLU professor and rector of the Bellarmine House of Studies. Fr. Schoenig talks with us about Jesuit formation, a process that can last 11 years or more. Fr. Schoenig will introduce us to two Jesuits, Noah Banasiewicz, S.J., and Benjamin Jansen, S.J., who are in formation at Bellarmine, and we hear their vocation stories and how they see all things new in Christ this Ignatian Year.

    Watch the Zoom Conversation 
  • April 27, 2022:  More about Jesuit formation and Scholastics at SLU

    We are blessed at Saint Louis University to have Jesuits in many stages of formation, including a House of Studies for third-, fourth-, and fifth-year Jesuits. Join us as we talk with Steven Schoenig, S.J., SLU professor and rector of the Bellarmine House of Studies. Fr. Schoenig talks with us about Jesuit formation, a process that can last 11 years or more. Fr. Schoenig will introduce us to three Jesuits, Emmanuel Arenas, S.J., Kevin Karam, S.J., and Brother Sullivan McCormick, S.J., who are in formation at Bellarmine, and we hear their vocation stories and how they see all things new in Christ this Ignatian Year.

    Watch the Zoom Conversation 
Jesuits New to SLU

Watch the Ignatian Conversation webinar on Jesuits new to SLU.

 

A Brief Study and Conversation on Jesuit Mission and Ignatian Spirituality

The heart of Ignatian Spirituality reminds us to find God in all things. And for the Ignatian Year, the Society of Jesus encourages us to ask for the grace to see all things new in Christ. How can we see the moments, the encounters, and the people in our day to day lives in a new way, with the eyes of Christ? Join us as a panel of Jesuits discuss the significance of the Ignatian Year and how you can enter into it.

The panel included:

  • Matthew Baugh, S.J., Department Chair, Catholic Studies
  • Dan White, S.J., Pastor, St. Francis Xavier, College Church
  • Ronny O'Dwyer, S.J. ,Assistant Professor, Director Billiken Teacher Corps

 

Women in Jesuit Works

April 9, 2021

Since the time that Ignatius began his pilgrimage women have played a vital role in the encouragement and support of Ignatius, and the emergence of the Society of Jesus. Five hundred years later women still are drawn to partnership in the Jesuit Mission.

The Jesuits of the Central and Southern Providence Winter/Spring publication was titled, "The Women's Issue." In this issue the providence reflected with gratitude on the vital contributions women have made as companions in mission. We invited four women to share what their lived experience of Jesuit mission has been at SLU. Each person shared for three-to-five minutes, followed by a discussion and questions.

Our reflectors were:

  • Sue Chawszczewski, Director of Campus Ministry
  • Katie Jansen Larson, Parish Administrator, College Church
  • Cynthia Stollhans, Professor of Art History, Fine and Performing Arts
  • Judi Buncher, Staff Member SLU

Learn About Women's Day for the Jesuits