Peace of Christ!
Fifty-six Jesuits are celebrating anniversaries within the Society in 2019. On behalf of the USA Midwest Province, I would like to thank and congratulate them for the generous and faith-filled lives of service they have offered and continue to offer the Church and Society. They inspire their brother Jesuits and so many others.
Though these men entered our least Society at different times, in different places, and under different circumstances, they share a common vocation of service to the Church and world. They never could have imagined the many ways the Lord would call on them to offer their talents and gifts, but we are grateful that God did call them. Moreover, we thank them for their generosity and courage in answering that call.
As you read their reflections, I invite you to reflect on the paths that God has put before you. The path of the Society itself has new light: the adoption of the four new Universal Apostolic Preferences (UAPs) which will guide our mission for the next 10 years: promoting discernment and the Spiritual Exercises; walking with the excluded; caring for our common home; and journeying with youth. As Father General wrote, “The preferences seek to unleash a process of apostolic revitalization and creativity that makes us better servants of reconciliation and justice.” May we see the light on this path and use it to fulfill the promises of the UAPs in the coming decade.
As we gratefully remember the men who have served the Midwest Province, let us pray that their example encourages each of us to give ourselves more completely, that we may love and serve the Church for the Greater Glory of God.
Brian G. Paulson, SJ
Provincial USA Midwest Province
Fr. Peter J. Klink, SJ
50 Years in the Society of Jesus
Born: November 10, 1950
Entered: August 24, 1969
Ordained: June 12, 1981
In my life and vocation, I have increasingly come to believe that gratitude is my most basic and most critical posture in faith. All is a gift! Gratitude invites me to acknowledge and recognize that fact. Flowing from a regular prayerful surveying of my life and my experience in our communal vocation, I look for the ways God has blessed me and invited me—sometimes in life’s challenges and struggles as well.
“The first point is to give thanks to God our Lord for the benefits I have received” are the words of the first point of St. Ignatius of Loyola in the Method of Making the General Examination of Conscience in The Spiritual Exercises.
This giving “thanks to God our Lord” invites me to recognize the different ways in which the always faithful love of God has blessed me and is there for me. That faithful and loving presence of God in our companionship and in our ministry invites me to ever-greater trust. It really opens the door to the availability in obedience that we Jesuits hope to always live. Due to his faithfulness, God will be there!
God invites me in the Society to walk in the footsteps of his Son, to know the companionship of Jesus in our brotherhood, and therefore to trust in this graced, blessed, and loving companionship. Gratitude heightens my awareness of a blessed and faithful companionship that allows us to live the YES that brings us the promise of eternal life!
Fr. Gerald J. Sabo
50 Years in the Society of Jesus
Born: June 16, 1945
Entered: September 6, 1969
Ordained: June 21, 1980
I reflect on my 50 years as a Jesuit, I feel greatly blessed and thankful to be in a society of companions of the Lord, very much socii Iesu as St. Ignatius of Loyola wanted. While many brother Jesuits have affected my life, some have had a special impact on who I have become and, I hope, continue to become.
I feel greatly blessed and thankful to be in a society of companions of the Lord
In my first year of novitiate, Tom O’Malley, then of Boston College, gave the New England novices a retreat in which he greatly expanded my appreciation of the Lucan narrative of the disciples on the road to Emmaus that I loved so much it would be the Gospel for my first public Mass as a priest. And when I came to John Carroll University (JCU) where Tom was president, he provided support for me as the youngest Jesuit in that community who was also not a member of the Detroit Province.
Casey Bukala, now at Colombiere, welcomed me to John Carroll and taught me so much as a young priest. From my first confession with him until the time he went to Colombiere, I deepened my priestly understanding of sacramental reconciliation that has affected my own pastoral approach to this sacrament. For some 26 years, he and I celebrated a Sunday morning student Mass where we shared preaching and grew as celebrants.
The Spiritual Exercises and Jesuit spirituality have certainly shaped my life, but also the above Jesuits, without whose presence in my life I would be a poorer companion of the Lord.