2018 — Father Arturo Sosa, SJ, Superior
General of the Society of Jesus, has named Father Jean Denis Saint-FÃ©lix, SJ, the
new superior of the Jesuits in Haiti. Fr. Saint-FÃ©lix succeeds Fr. Miller
Lamothe, SJ, of the Jesuits’ French Canada Province, who has served for the
last seven years in Haiti.
A native of
Haiti, Fr. Saint-FÃ©lix currently serves as the Secretary for the Office of
Justice and Ecology at the Jesuit Conference of Canada and the United States,
the organization that represents the Society of Jesus.
says that he and his four siblings were raised as “children of the church” at
St. Jean Baptiste Parish in the south of Haiti. While Fr. Saint-FÃ©lix’s
brother’s calling was to serve as a priest in Congo, Fr. Saint-FÃ©lix discerned
that his vocation was to the Jesuits. As a novice, he was sent to Panama for
two years before being missioned to the Universidad Centroamericana (UCA) in El
Salvador for philosophy studies.
He then returned
to Haiti to teach at the diocesan seminary for the next few years, while also
working at the UniversitÃ© Ã‰piscopale d’Haiti. His Jesuit formation took
him next to Regis College at the University of Toronto, where he earned a
Master of Divinity degree and then to Boston’s Weston Jesuit School of Theology
(now the Boston College School of Theology and Ministry) for a Licentiate in
Sacred Theology. Missioned next to Centre SÃ¨vres in Paris, he earned a
doctorate in systematic theology.
Fr. Saint-FÃ©lix was part of a delegation to Honduras in January 2018.
Fr. Saint-FÃ©lix joined the faculty at the UniversitÃ© Notre Dame d’HaÃ¯ti (UNDH), where he
served as general secretary and as a professor. He also served both as a consultor for Haiti and superior of
the Jesuit community of Saint Ignatius of Loyola (2014-2017). He was also
part of the board of the committee planning the construction of the Jesuit
novitiate in Haiti, which opened in 2015. For the past five years, Fr.
Saint-FÃ©lix taught systematic theology at CIFOR, the Center for Religious
Formation of the Religious Congregations in Haiti.
of the Jesuits in Haiti, Fr. Saint-FÃ©lix will be responsible for the spiritual
life and supervision of the Jesuits there, and he will
make decisions on matters related to the missioning of Jesuits and Jesuit formation. He will work closely with the Provincial of the new
Jesuit Canadian Province, as well as the presidents of the Conference of Provincials of Latin America (CPAL) and the Jesuit Conference of Canada and the United States, to better
structure the life and works of the Jesuits in Haiti. He will also lead the Haitian Jesuits as
they continue their discernment on their eventual integration in a new
apostolic platform that will better serve the needs of the Caribbean region.
our vocation is grounded in our universal call to serve where needs are
greatest,” said Father Timothy Kesicki, SJ, president of the Jesuit Conference
of Canada and the United States. “We have been so fortunate to have Fr. Saint-FÃ©lix
working with us in Washington, heading up our justice and ecology work. We will
certainly miss him, but we know he is needed at home now, where he will bring his
energy, vision and deep devotion to his brother Jesuits in Haiti.”
Oland, SJ, provincial of the French Canada Province Jesuits, expressed his
thanks to Fr. Lamothe for his seven years of service while noting that the appointment
of Fr. Saint-FÃ©lix is “a very positive step forward for the territory of Haiti
as well as for the future of the Society in the Caribbean region.”