Papal Seminary is delighted to welcome Very Rev Fr Arturo Sosa, Superior General of the Society of Jesus.
Father Superior General arrived at De Nobili College on March 5, 2017 and will be in our campus till March 6, 2019. We are delighted and we welcome him!
Meeting with Rev Fr Superior General, March 6, 2019: 12:30 PM. Papal Seminary Hall
Foster collaboration and networking in a spirit of Magis,” Jesuit General to Indian Seminarians
While addressing a gathering of Papal Seminary community, Rev Fr Arturo Sosa, the Superior General of the Society of Jesus, urged them to be priests who care for the people at the margins, in a spirit of magis and discernment.
Father General expressed his happiness to be with the staff and students of Papal Seminary, Pune, fondly called “Home of Love.” It has celebrated 125 years of a fruitful and grace-filled existence. He based his talk to the Papal Seminary community on the Jubilee theme of, “Looking Back with Gratitude, Looking Forward with Trust.”
- Looking Back with Gratitude
He recalled how Papal Seminary was founded at Kandy, Sri Lanka, in 1893, inspired by the then Pope, Leo XIII. He told the Indians: “Filiitui India, administri tibi salutis!” (“Your own sons, O India, will be the heralds of your salvation!”) The mission of forming heralds of salvation for India was, through the initiative of Archbishop Msgr Ladislaus Michael Zaleski, entrusted to the Jesuits.
He recalled how in 1955, with the help of the then Jesuit Mission Superior of Pune, Rev. Fr Pius Geisal, SJ, the Papal Seminary was shifted to Pune. Pune is known for its educational and cultural heritage.
He thanked God for the “number of eminent priests and missionaries who have passed out from the portals of the Papal Seminary. Among them are four Cardinals and 75 Bishops and Archbishops serving the Church across India.”
The Present Situation of Papal Seminary:
The present Papal Seminary community is comprised of 193 members – staff and students from three different Rites, from 62 dioceses and 4 religious congregations. “It is a mini-Church by itself. This is culturally a very rich community, blessed with multitalented and gifted Fathers and Brothers,” Father Sosa added.
He recalled how Papal Seminary, together with De Nobili College and JDV, reached out to the flood-affected victims in Kerala with 7 truck-load of food materials. Thirty-three of your Seminarians volunteered to do rehabilitation work after the floods. He also recalled that the Seminary has financially helped the people who were affected by the Cyclone ‘GAJA’ in Tamil Nadu.
Father General praised the new form of governance, that of collaboration and networking, in the Seminary.. Formation in the Papal Seminary is a collaborative venture of Formators, Students and Support Staff. He appreciated the Formators for being very student friendly and approachable, “helping all of you to grow in the wisdom of the Lord and to strengthen your companionship for mission.”
He asserted that a “good collaboration exists in the Papal Seminary between the Jesuits, the Diocesan staff and the CBCI. I am grateful to the Bishops for giving the Papal Seminary their best Priests as Formators.” He thanked the Bishop of Pune, His Lordship Bishop Thomas Dabre for his continual support to the Seminary.
- Looking Forward with Trust
The Church is facing challenges all over the world. These challenges are hampering the Mission of Christ. To meet these external challenges, we need to form ourselves well, intellectually, emotionally and spiritually. We need to be prudent but at the same time stand up for the truth. For meeting the internal challenges that we encounter at the personal or congregational or diocesan levels, he urged them “to keep strengthening your spiritual and emotional lives.” We cannot really encounter the external challenges unless and until we deeply encounter the internal challenges, which are within our jurisdiction, he reminded them.
Father General invited the Seminarians and Priests to have their lives characterized by: Margins, Magis and Discernment.
- Margins: Heeding the advice of Pope Francis, we are invited “go to the peripheries,” or to the margins, to take up ministries that are challenging, where no one else will dare to go. We are called to stand for the underprivileged, migrants and women who are exploited by the powerful.
- Magis: You can accomplish this, if you have the spirit of Magis (which means more), which always seeks the Greater Glory of God in everything you do. The spirit of the magis invites us to do “more” and to do it “better”. Mediocrity has no place in the spirituality of the magis. Magis does not lead you to competition with others. With others, we are in collaboration and cooperation. What God wants to foster among us and with people is collaboration and networking.
- Discernment: We need to foster discernment, individually and in common, because we are doing the Mission of God and it cannot be done without the promptings of the Holy Spirit. Our God is always at work. We need to work with and for Him and for His people who are most in need. In order to work together in a spirit of collaboration and networking, we need to inculcate a spirit of discernment, individually and in common.
He concluded his prepared talk by affirming that “The universal Church needs you,”. He also assured the Seminarians that “the Jesuits, will always stand by you: we are partners in the Mission of God.’
A book “With Gratitude and Trust: Serving the Church and the Nation” was released by Father General. The book contains 28 articles dealing with the service that Christians leaders can render to the Church and India.
Father General was introduced and welcomed by Rev Fr Bhausaheb Sansare, the Rector, Papal Seminary, who referred to Father General as a person deeply concerned of the poor and disadvantaged. Fathers George Karuvelil and Paul Raj felicitated him. Deacon Vipin Raj proposed the vote of thanks.
News on his Ash Wednesday Homily (March 6, 2019) at 8:30 for JDV campus
“Lent is a to reconcile ourselves with God and nature through prayer, fasting and alms-giving” Arturo Sosa
“We need urgently to reconcile ourselves with God, fellow human beings and with nature,” said the Superior General of the Society of Jesus, Rev Fr Arturo Sosa SJ, at Pune, India. Addressing the staff and students of Jnana-Deepa Vidaypeeth, Pune, the Superior General of the Society of Jesus, Rev Fr Arturo Sosa maintained that the season of Lent is a gift of joy.
He was celebrating the Eucharist on March 6, 2019, on Ash Wednesday, the first day of the season of Lent at Jnana-Deepa Vidyapeeth. Lent is a special time when Christian prepare for the death and resurrection of Jesus. He quoted from the Preface of Lent: “By your gracious each year your faithful await the sacred paschal feasts with the joy of minds made pure.” Two words here are striking: gift and joy. Lent is God’s gift to us, and it fells us with great joy. The joy of returning to God — the God who fills us with joy, restores us and reconciles us with Himself, with all His children, and with all His creatures.
Father Sosa, who is on a three day visit to Pune, repeated the words of St. Paul: “We are ambassadors of Christ, it is as though God were appealing through us, and the appeal that we make in Christ’s name is: Be reconciled to God.” Paul adds: “See, now is the acceptable time; see, now is the day of salvation!” So there is no postponements! We need to change now and experience the gift of joy that comes from God. It changes us at this very moment.
Father Sosa added that Jesus proposes very precise and practical steps to realise this reconciliation, says Sosa. He suggests three spiritual disciplines, “which you, in India, call ‘sadhanas’: prayer, fasting and alms-giving.”
First and foremost, prayer, contemplation, meditation and worship bring about our reconciliation with God. It makes us closer to God in love.
Second, “alms-giving makes us aware of the ‘poor’ – the millions of our sisters and brothers who are struggling to survive in our selfish world.” True alms-giving means not only generously giving what we ‘have’ but who we ‘are.’ In this sense true almsgiving is self-giving. It reconciles us with all of humankind.
Third, fasting creates an awareness of God’s generosity through the gifts of nature. We voluntarily deprive ourselves of food and detach ourselves from the many comforts and goods which we have become so dependent upon. “Fasting could help us to be reconciled with mother earth (creation) and with all God’s creatures,” Father Sosa added.
Father Sosa, the Chancellor of Jnana-Deepa Vidyapeeth, pleaded with 1100 staff and students: “As we enter into this season of Lent, let us not forget these three acts of love, and let us strive for the triple reconciliation — with God, with others, and with nature.”
He referred to Pope Francis’ constant reminder that “our God is a God of mercy.” He urged the participants to “return to God with all our heart—full of joy! May our Lenten season be a time of grace and reconciliation, bringing joy and peace to all those we will encounter.”
He added further: “As companions of Christ on a mission of reconciliation and justice, my prayer for you is that you continue being ‘lights’ amidst the darkness of selfishness and sin. May the knowledge we cultivate be enlightening and empowering for all.”
He concluded his speech quoting the beautiful prayer from the Upanishads: “O God, from untruth, lead us to truth; from darkness, lead us to light; from death, lead us to eternal life, Amen.”
Rev Fr Selva Rathinam, President, Jnana-Deepa Vidyapeeth, Pune welcomed him. Fr Rathinam said that JDV currently has about 800 students and 33 faculty in its Faculties of Philosophy and Theology. The students represent 82 dioceses and 83 different religious congregations. This makes JDV a mini India and mini-Church with three rites present in the same campus. Fr Francis Gonsalves, Dean, Faculty of Theology, introduced him to audience. Fr. George Pattery, Vice-Chancellor, Fr Bhausaheb Sansare, Rector, Papal Seminary and others felicitated him. Father Sosa is accompanied by two of his General Assistants, Fr Lisbert D’Souza and Fr Vernon D’Cunha, besides Fr Juan Antonio Guerrero Alves, Delegate for the International Houses in Rome.
Exactly ten years ago! Visit of the Former General, Rev Fr Adolfo Nicolás, on March 5, 2009.