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Office for Mission spearheads new Ignatian Identity Week for Loyola student body

Loyola began its first Ignatian Identity Week to celebrate our school’s Jesuit heritage and Ignatian spirituality on Monday, Nov. 4. This year was the first time the school held this week-long event. The schedule included various activities that allowed students and faculty alike to explore and express their Ignatian identity.

Rev. Gregory M. Goethals, SJ, ’73 said, “I am grateful that I have this job as a Jesuit. It is important to be grateful to God and believe in the Society of Jesus.”

Monday’s event was called Conversation and Candy, run by by Ignatian Scholars, a group of seniors responsible for the school’s Writing Center. During lunch, students talked with some of the scholars at a booth in the Malloy Commons while eating candy. The seniors present were Christian Zada, Diego Burgos, Max Arnerich, Daniel Maddigan, Connor Lindquist and Peter Challita. 

 Rev. Jerry Hudson said, “I got accustomed to the Jesuits when I was really little, and my brother went to a Jesuit high school. I also went to a Jesuit high school in Fresno that doesn’t exist anymore. It’s a great place to be from but not a great place to be at.”

On Tuesday, a panel of Loyola’s own Jesuit priests gathered in Malloy Commons to be interviewed in front of the whole school during lunch. The panel consisted of Rev. Stephen Barber, SJ; Rev. Gregory Goethals, SJ, ’73; Rev. Jerry Hudson, SJ; and Rev. John Quinn, SJ. The priests discussed various aspects of their lives, such as childhood, high school and reasons for becoming a Jesuit. Rev. Goethals, SJ decided to return to Loyola after becoming a Jesuit.

Rev. Goethals said, “Loyola has been a very special place in my life. My dad graduated here, my brothers were here, and my nephew is here now. It is a formational experience beyond just the education.”

Rev. Barber, discussing the fact that both he and his older brother are Jesuits, said, “my older brother had the opportunity to set a course for me.” Barber felt as if his older brother being a Jesuit had a strong influence on his decision to join the Society of Jesus.

 When asked about the role of Jesuits at Loyola, Rev. Quinn said, “The people who are here love it, and they hold onto the jobs for as long as they can in their career. If a new Jesuit comes, we will have to have a new model that embraces them for a period of time.”

On Wednesday, Nov. 6, the Jesuit priests emphasized the theme of “Walking with the Excluded.” By stressing the importance of solidarity, they highlighted a sense of community within Loyola among students of all backgrounds, ethnicities, and religions.

On Thursday, Nov. 7, a school-wide photo challenge launched. Photos captured the Ignatian value of respect for the environment. The photos were posted to Instagram and judged in a gallery set up in Mallow Commons. The winners were Ramsay Goyal (first), Adam Magpoc (second) and Thomas Catalano (third). The winners each won a $25 gift card of their choosing.


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