from the conclusion of the Spiritual Exercises, the Exercises having been written as a guide for a retreat director, not as spiritual reading per se.
(Someone trained by the Jesuits in the early part of the 20th century would likely be familiar with these rules and would know Jesuits who embody them.)
1. Always to be ready to obey with mind and heart, setting aside all judgement of one’s own, the true spouse of Jesus Christ, our holy mother, our infallible and orthodox mistress, the Catholic Church, whose authority is exercised over us by the hierarchy.
2. To commend the confession of sins to a priest as it is practised in the Church; the reception of the Holy Eucharist once a year, or better still every week, or at least every month, with the necessary preparation.
3. To commend to the faithful frequent and devout assistance at the holy sacrifice of the Mass, the ecclesiastical hymns, the divine office, and in general the prayers and devotions practised at stated times, whether in public in the churches or in private.
4. To have a great esteem for the religious orders, and to give the preference to celibacy or virginity over the married state.
5. To approve of the religious vows of chastity, poverty, perpetual obedience, as well as to the other works of perfection and supererogation. Let us remark in passing, that we must never engage by vow to take a state (such e.g. as marriage) that would be an impediment to one more perfect…
6. To praise relics, the veneration and invocation of Saints: also the stations, and pious pilgrimages, indulgences, jubilees, the custom of lighting candles in the churches, and other such aids to piety and devotion.
7. To praise the use of abstinence and fasts as those of Lent, of Ember Days, of Vigils, of Friday, Saturday, and of others undertaken out of pure devotion: also voluntary mortifications, which we call penances, not merely interior, but exterior also.
8. To commend moreover the construction of churches, and ornaments; also images, to be venerated with the fullest right, for the sake of what they represent.
9. To uphold especially all the precepts of the Church, and not censure them in any manner; but, on the contrary, to defend them promptly, with reasons drawn from all sources, against those who criticize them.
10. To be eager to commend the decrees, mandates, traditions, rites and customs of the Fathers in the Faith or our superiors. As to their conduct; although there may not always be the uprightness of conduct that there ought to be, yet to attack or revile them in private or in public tends to scandal and disorder. Such attacks set the people against their princes and pastors; we must avoid such reproaches and never attack superiors before inferiors. The best course is to make private approach to those who have power to remedy the evil.
11. To value most highly the sacred teaching, both the Positive and the Scholastic, as they are commonly called…
12. It is a thing to be blamed and avoided to compare men who are living on the earth (however worthy of praise) with the Saints and Blessed, saying: This man is more learned than St. Augustine, etc…
13. That we may be altogether of the same mind and in conformity with the Church herself, if she shall have defined anything to be black which to our eyes appears to be white, we ought in like manner to pronounce it to be black. For we must undoubtedly believe, that the Spirit of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the Spirit of the Orthodox Church His Spouse, by which Spirit we are governed and directed to Salvation, is the same;…
14. It must also be borne in mind, that although it be most true, that no one is saved but he that is predestinated, yet we must speak with circumspection concerning this matter, lest perchance, stressing too much the grace or predestination of God, we should seem to wish to shut out the force of free will and the merits of good works; or on the other hand, attributing to these latter more than belongs to them, we derogate meanwhile from the power of grace.
15 For the like reason we should not speak on the subject of predestination frequently; if by chance we do so speak, we ought so to temper what we say as to give the people who hear no occasion of erring and saying, ‘If my salvation or damnation is already decreed, my good or evil actions are predetermined’; whence many are wont to neglect good works, and the means of salvation.
16. It also happens not unfrequently, that from immoderate, preaching and praise of faith, without distinction or explanation added, the people seize a pretext for being lazy with regard to any good works, which precede faith, or follow it when it has been formed by the bond of charity.
17. Not any more must we push to such a point when the preaching and inculcating of the grace of God, as that there may creep thence into the minds of the hearers the deadly error of denying our faculty of free will. We must speak of it as the glory of God requires… that we may not raise doubts as to liberty and the efficacy of good works.
18. Although it is very praiseworthy and useful to serve God through the motive of pure charity, yet we must also recommend the fear of God; and not only filial fear, but servile fear, which is very useful and often even necessary to raise man from sin… Once risen from the state, and free from the affection of mortal sin, we may then speak of that filial fear which is truly worthy of God, and which gives and preserves the union of pure love.
an article by the late Avery Cardinal Dulles, S.J.
America, January 15, 2007
(Cardinal Dulles was someone trained by the Jesuits in the early part of the 20th century who was familiar with the Rules and knew Jesuits who embodied them.)
The term “Jesuit” is often misunderstood. Not to mention enemies for whom Jesuit is a term of opprobrium, friends of the Society sometimes identify the term with independence of thought and corporate pride, both of which St. Ignatius deplored. Others reduce the Jesuit trademark to a matter of educational techniques, such as the personal care of students, concern for the whole person, rigor in thought and eloquence in expression. These qualities are estimable and have a basis in the teaching of St. Ignatius. But they omit any consideration of the fact that the Society of Jesus is an order of vowed religious in the Catholic Church. They are bound by special allegiance to the pope, the bishop of Rome. And above all, it needs to be mentioned that the Society of Jesus is primarily about a person: Jesus, the redeemer of the world. If the Society were to lose its special devotion to the Lord (which, I firmly trust, will never happen) it would indeed be obsolete.
an article by Sr. Joan L. Roccasalvo, C.S.J.
Catholic News Agency, 31 July 2012
At Manresa, where Ignatius the pilgrim composed the Spiritual Exercises, several women looked after his needs. Among them were Iñes Pascual, an influential widow, and Hieronima Claver, administrator of Santa Lucia hospital for the indigent, and Isabel Roser, perhaps his most generous supporter. In 1532, Ignatius writes to her: “…for to you I owe more than anyone I know in my life” (“Letters,” 265). At Manresa, his world-vision was born and began to take shape, and women, known as Iñigas, were the first to benefit from the graces received there because they did the Exercises. The first members of his inchoate and primitive company were women.