Society of Jesus

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History of the Jesuits
Regimini militantis
Suppression

Jesuit Hierarchy
Superior General
Adolfo Nicolás

Ignatian Spirituality
Spiritual Exercises
Ad majorem Dei gloriam
Magis
Discernment

Famous Jesuits
St. Ignatius of Loyola
St. Francis Xavier
Blessed Peter Faber
St. Aloysius Gonzaga
St. Robert Bellarmine
St. Peter Canisius
St. Edmund Campion

The Society of Jesus (Latin: Societas Iesu, S.J. and S.I. or SJ, SI) is a religious order of men called Jesuits, who follow the teachings of the Catholic Church. Jesuit priests and brothers — also sometimes known colloquially as "God's marines"[2] — are engaged in evangelization and apostolic ministry in 112 nations on six continents reflecting the Formula of the Institute (principle) of the Society. They are known in the fields of education (schools, colleges, universities, seminaries, theological faculties), intellectual research, and cultural pursuits in addition to missionary work, giving retreats, hospital and parish ministry, promoting social justice and ecumenical dialogue.

The Society was founded by St. Ignatius of Loyola, who after being wounded in a battle, experienced a religious conversion and composed the Spiritual Exercises in order to help others to follow Christ more closely. In 1534, Ignatius gathered six young men, including St. Francis Xavier and Bl. Pierre Favre, and together they professed vows of poverty and chastity, and then later, obedience, including a special vow of obedience to the Pope. Rule 13 of Ignatius' Rules for Thinking with the Church said: "That we may be altogether of the same mind and in conformity[...], if [the Church] 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.".[3] Ignatius' plan of the order's organization was approved by Pope Paul III in 1540 by the bull containing the Formula of the Institute. The opening lines of this founding document would declare that the Society of Jesus was founded to "strive especially for the propagation and defense of the faith and progress of souls in Christian life and doctrine."[4] The Society participated in the Counter-Reformation and later in the implementation of the Second Vatican Council in the Catholic Church.

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