I was chatting with my colleague Joe the other day and I found myself telling him, “I’m not frightened of encountering God at the Last Judgment, it’s the prospect of meeting Saint Ignatius face-to-face that terrifies me.” Joe told me that I wasn’t the first Jesuit he’d heard express the same sentiment.
Why do I consider an eccentric little man from the 16th Century more demanding than my Awesome and Majestic God?
There are the stories about how he sometimes upbraided Jesuits pretty harshly and even dismissed a few men from the Order on the spot. Most of all, there’s my suspicion that he would consider me tepid, irresolute and lacking in all the key virtues.
And yet, and yet, if you read the contemporary accounts of his companions, they all loved him dearly and dwelt on how kind and full of good humor he was.
I don’t know. I have it wrong either about Inigo or about the Last Judgment. I’m hoping I have it right on the latter. With the former, I’ll manage on on my own. Who knows? I might be very pleasantly surprized.