St Ignatius (1491 – 1556) was born the youngest of thirteen children at Loyola in Spain. His mother died soon after his birth and he was adopted by the local blacksmith’s wife.
St Ignatius, with a “love of martial exercises and a vain glorious desire for fame,” joined the army at 17. He was happy to take up arms, engage in duels and, together with his leadership qualities, he became an accomplished fighter. That is until he sustained serious leg injuries when hit by a cannonball.
St Ignatius, during his convalescence, read many religious texts and resolved to devote his future life to the conversion of non-Christians, emulating St Francis of Assisi. He studied theology, was ordained a Priest and founded the Society of Jesus (Jesuits), becoming its first Superior General.
St Ignatius is remembered as a talented spiritual director and for his vigorous opposition to the Protestant Revolution. He is Patron Saint of the Society of Jesus, soldiers and parts of Spain. His Feast Day is the 31st July.
St Ignatius of Loyola:
Pray that we will be generous to the Lord, serve as He deserves,
Glory be to the…