When I first came to Loyola Press, someone asked me to do my best to sum up Ignatian Spirituality in as easily-understandable way as I could. I came up with a list of ten characteristics and I will now share them with you, David Letterman-style, from #10 to #1 (although I’m not confident that there is a “correct” order). Astute readers (!) will notice that I have covered several of these characteristics in individual posts and I plan to write on them all as we go along.
10. Union of minds and hearts – as brothers and sisters, we listen for the God who is present among us, admitting no division based on ethnicity, nationality, background, age or gender.
9. Flexibility and adaptability – (e.g.,16th Century Jesuits wearing Chinese robes and generally adapting to various cultures; respecting people’s lived experience.)
8. Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam (For the greater glory of God) – praising God and dedicating oneself to participate in God’s healing work in the world.
7. “The World is charged with the grandeur of God” – the positive, energetic and engaged vision of God’s constant interaction with creation.
6. Faith that does justice – the realization that there can be no true expression of faith where concerns for justice and human dignity are missing.
5. Inner Freedom (the result of self-awareness and discernment.)
4. Contemplation in action – not a monastic existence, but an active one that is, at the same time, infused with prayer.
3. Reflection (Self-awareness/Discernment) leading to Gratitude which leads to Service (linked to becoming a “man or woman for others” – big Ignatian buzzwords.)
2. Personal relationship with Christ and love for the Church (bruised and broken as it often is.)
1. Finding God in all things