Rooted in God – Open to the World: The Faith and Justice Vision of Fr. Pedro Arrupe S. J.

Muller, Heribert (1996) Rooted in God – Open to the World: The Faith and Justice Vision of Fr. Pedro Arrupe S. J. Other thesis, Gregorian University.

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For someone, who has not known Fr. Arrupe in person, I am undertaking a risky enterprise in writing about him. Many would be much more qualified to do it. Still through his vivid letters on Jesuit spirituality, his addresses on Christian life in the modern world and, especially through his passionate and enthusiastic love for Jesus Christ who occupied the central place in his life, Fr. Arrupe had a great influence on my own vocation as a Jesuit. He presented an inspiring image of a companion of Jesus, an image that appealed to me in my own search. In my attempt to sketch out the spiritual profile of Fr. Arrupe, I relied fully on published documents which date almost entirely from his years as Superior General of the Society of Jesus (1965-1983). Some of them sound official, written for the worldwide Society, others retain a more personal tone. It is known that Arrupe gave special consideration to every letter and document and that he took great care to prepare for each meeting and for each of his addresses. My aim has been to explore more in depth the inner life of a Jesuit who has had a tremendous influence on the Society of Jesus and beyond, especially during the postconciliar period. I would be glad, if the reader of these pages found some interest in Arrupe' s life and teaching. It is my conviction that his witness and message are still of great importance in a time of transition and change in the contemporary world and in the Church. Given the limits of a licentiate dissertation, I have tried, to give a clear and balanced account of his spiritual teaching in the belief that it is deep, life-giving and of great value. A few biographical data may suffice to become familiar with the major events of Fr. Arrupe's life: Pedro Arrupe was born i n Bilbao, Spain, on November 1 4, 1907. His father was a founder of one of the first Catholic newspapers in Spain. Pedro gave up his medical studies at the University of Madrid to enter the Society of Jesus on January 15, 1927. When the Spanish government ordered the expulsion of the Order's 2,640 members from its realms in February, 1932, he left Spain and continued his studies in Belgium, Holland, and the United States. He was ordained a priest on July 30, 1936. In 1938 he went to Japan as a missionary. He was later named Master of Novices and then Rector of the novitiate. At the time of the explosion of the first atomic bomb on August 6, 1945, he was in Hiroshima. Along with his novices, he devoted himself without counting the cost to the care of the wounded, turning the novitiate into a makeshift hospital. In 1954, he was named director of the vice-province of Japan; and when, on October 18, 1959, Japan was made a province, he was named its provincial, a position he filled until 1965 . Under his direction, the Catholic University of Tokyo was greatly expanded. He published several books on Ignatian spirituality in Japanese, and related his memories of Hiroshima in a book published in Spanish. On May 22, 1965, the 218 Jesuit Fathers representing the 36, 000 members of the Order in 90 countries, who were gathered in Rome for their 31st General Congregation, elected Fr. Arrupe on the third ballot as the Superior General of the Society of Jesus. It is in that capacity that he participated in the Fourth Session of the Second Vatican Council. In 1974-75 he presided at the 32nd General Congregation, which he himself summoned, as well as the Congregations of the Procurators in 1970 and 1978. In 1967, 1971, 1974, 1977 and 1980, he participated in the Synods of Bishops which took place in Rome. In his last years, Fr. Arrupe participated and spoke effectively at the International Eucharistic Congress of August 1976 in Philadelphia; at the November 1977 Inter-American Conference of Religious in Montreal, in Puebla in January 1979; as well as at the General Assemblies of the Episcopal Conferences of Africa and Madagascar. It was on his return from a trip to the Philippines on August 7, 1981, that he was stricken with a cerebral thrombosis at the Fiumicino Airport of Rome. He submitted his resignation to the 33rd General Congregation, accepted with deep gratitude and understanding regret on September 3, 1983. On February 5, 1991, Fr. Arrupe died in the infirmary of the Jesuit headquarters in Rome.

Item Type: Thesis (Other)
Uncontrolled Keywords: Fr. Pedro Arrupe, Faith and Justice, rooted in God
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BR Christianity
Divisions: Jesuitica
Depositing User: Mr Christopher Mapunda
Date Deposited: 30 Jun 2015 11:16
Last Modified: 30 Jun 2015 11:16

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