6 Resources on Ignatian Leadership to Inspire and Guide an Apostolic Planning Process

June 6, 2019 — Appropriating the new Universal Apostolic Preferences (UAPs) must not only be achieved via contemplation and prayer, but “also through action so that we can further relate to the cries of the world, be closer to one another, closer to Christ and by his side,” has said Father General, Arturo Sosa.

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To facilitate both the process of appropriation of the UAPs and apostolic planning, we’ve compiled a set of resources, from documents detailing the UAPs, to content about discernment in common and an online library on Ignatian leadership.

  1. Listening
    The first step is listening. In fact, this is a theme that Pope Francis himself has often spoken about. In a recent address to the leaders of Caritas Internationalis, he said, “Humility is born when, instead of talking, one listens, when one ceases to be at the centre. (...) It’s the way of humble service, which Jesus followed. It’s always important to listen to the voice of all, especially of the little ones and the least. In the world those who have more means speak more, but among us it can’t be that way.”

  2. Father General’s Letter on Appropriating the Universal Apostolic Preferences
    Father General’s letter of April 21, 2019 underlines several key aspects regarding the process for appropriating the Universal Apostolic Preferences. First highlighting the importance of “finding a fair and fruitful tension between ‘being’ and ‘doing,’” he then puts forth certain ideas, from the formation of young Jesuits to the needs for effective cooperation with Jesuit partners. Read more here.

  3. Communal Discernment Step-by-Step
    The Universal Apostolic Preferences are the result of communal discernment from “the bottom to the top.” Now that they have been proclaimed, the Jesuits of Canada must fully understand them and discernment will once again be at the centre of this process. The Society of Jesus has set up a website of Ignatian resources, some of them focused on communal discernment. This site covers different stages, from preparing the group to gathering data and implementing decisions. For more information, click here.

  4. Ten Steps for Apostolic Planning
    The Jesuit Curia has also produced a detailed document on the 10 steps involved required for apostolic planning. For more information, click here.

  5. A Journal on Leadership and Governance
    In 2018, the Social Justice and Ecology Secretariat published a journal titled Leadership and Governance: A call to Reconcile and Recreate. Amongst other contributors, Élizabeth Garant, director of the Centre Justice et Foi (Centre for Justice and Faith) in Quebec, wrote an essay about leadership in Jesuit works, specifically within social apostolates. In it, she describes the steps and conditions required to favour the emergence of managers in service of the mission. Click here to learn more.

  6. A Online Library on Ignatian Leadership
    Last but not least, another resource produced by the Jesuit Curia, this time on Ignatian leadership. The website offers a set of educational materials that creatively combine the central elements of the Jesuit tradition with modern tools from the leadership and management world. For more information, click here.




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