St. Ignatius of Loyola – 31st July

St. Ignatius of Loyola
Sunday, July 31, 2016
Lived(1491-1556) | Feast Day: Sunday, July 31, 2016

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St Ignatius of Loyola is the Patron Saint of St Ignatius’ Church and he was founder of the Society of Jesus (SJ) to which this parish was entrusted in 1866.

St Ignatius was born Inigo Lopez on 24 December 1491, the year before Columbus discovered the New World. His birthplace was the great castle of Loyola in Guipuzcoa, in the Basque country of northwest Spain. There were three daughters and eight sons in the family and he was the youngest.

Inigo led a very worldly life during the first thirty years of his life as a nobleman, fired with dreams of romanticism and chivalry. When he was 25 he enlisted in the army and saw service in border warfare against the French.

A Changed Life

In 1521 when defending the Spanish fortress of Pamplona, Ignatius’ right leg was shattered by a cannon ball. His French captors, impressed by his courage, carried him across Spain to his family home, where he began a long period of recovery during which he read the only two books available in the castle – Life of Christ and The Golden Legend, a book on the lives of the saints.

During his convalescence, he experienced the gift of God’s consolation in such a way that his life changed forever and after a long, serious reflection, he decided to devote the rest of his life to outstanding service of God.

The Spiritual Exercises

Read on-> The life of Ignatious Loyola