On Thursday, November 5, Fr. Chuck Frederico, S.J., Director of Vocations for the Northeast Province of the Society of Jesus, celebrated a school-wide Mass for Regis in the Church of Saint Ignatius Loyola. The day marked the Feast of All Blesseds and Saints of the Society of Jesus.
Fr. Frederico also joined Regis students during the two lunch periods to discuss Jesuit vocations and the process of discernment, training, and education. His talk provided a wide reflection on ways to discern God's will for each of us in our lives as Catholics.
Below is a reprint of Fr. Frederico's homily delivered at the Mass.
The Archbishop of Paris during WWII was Monseigneur Emmanuel Suhard and he had the following to say about a saintly life.
"To be a witness does not consist in engaging in propaganda, nor even in stirring people up, but in being a living mystery. It means to live in such a way that one's life would not make sense if God did not exist!"
Today, on this 5th of November, the Society of Jesus celebrates the Feast of all its Saints and Blessed; Coupled with that, the Society also challenges Jesuits and Jesuit works to pray for our mission in a special way -to pray for vocations to the Priesthood and the Brothers in the Society of Jesus. And so it is that we gather.
I believe that the words of Archbishop Suhard capture what motivated the lives of these Jesuit Saints and Blessed.
However, I also believe that you too emulate this saintliness, through your service projects here at Regis, where you encounter the saints, and you learn how to be one.
Through your relationships with one another and in your studies here at Regis you encounter the saints, and learn how to be one.
And through your liturgies, prayer and retreats here at Regis you encounter the prayer of the saints, and you learn how to be one.
The lives we commemorate and strive to emulate today clearly had a focus, a mission, and a center of gravity. All of that can be summed up in A Love of Jesus Christ! These were men just like us!
Through their love, they offer us an example of courage; they pray for us and walk with us in difficult times; they are our companions in good times and in bad; and one day, we will be united with them in the heavenly court of God.
These men are not only our role models, but also, they are our friends and intercessors.
These Jesus saints and blessed assist us on our everyday pilgrimage and lead us to a home in God -yesterday, today and always.
The Society of Jesus is blessed to have these gifted men through its long history who learned the art of discernment. From their discernment these men responded to a call from God to share their giftedness with the Church, the Society of Jesus, and with the world.
My friends, be attentive to your heart and how God may be speaking to it.
Always take time to ask God for greater clarity in your own discernment of gifts and how to use them.
Establish for yourselves now a deeper sense of prayer, generosity, commitment, compassion, and conviction. For it is in these gifts that your service to others is enabled; in these gifts that each of you develops the essential components of a saint.
It is these gifts that stand as the core of a Jesuit vocation as a priest or brother; and it is in these gifts that the core of many other potential roles in life develop.
Any and all of these roles in life call for generosity as their leading factor.
Friends, ask yourselves, how is God calling you today, tomorrow, always?
Pray, speak with others, and encounter the Lord day to day and you will find your vocation.
Our Jesuit spirituality, manner of teaching, living, and governing invite all people to enkindle a personal relationship with Jesus Christ.
The quote we heard from Archbishop Suhard hastens each of us to be a saintly witness to everyone we meet. By all our actions and testimony we live out our Baptismal call – that personal relationship with Jesus.
Only then, coupled with God's grace, can we see how all those whom we commemorate today got to be where they are - In the Presence of God!
My friends: Live, Love, and Discern Well a saintly life. God's Blessings live among us!