Igniting Our Values
Igniting Our Values

March 20, Friday

Apostolic Availability

Jesuit Fr. Kevin White, currently serving in Washington, D.C., with Jesuit Refugee Service/USA, uses the notions of freedom and passion to define the value that Pedro Arrupe called “the heart of Jesuit identity,” Apostolic Availability.

S. Evans

Scripture Readings

Sunday Readings - Week 4

2 CHR 36:14-16, 19-23
EPH 2:4-10
JN 3:14-21



A procedural note: our reflections and prayers will refer to the Sunday readings for the week, not the daily readings.

Daily Reflection

Freedom and Passion
by Kevin White, SJ

On July 10, 2011, we gathered at the cathedral of Christ the King in Yei, South Sudan. The previous day, after nearly 40 years of civil war, exile, insecurity, and grinding poverty, South Sudan had declared its independence from the North. Bishop Lokudu of the diocese of Yei, where I was serving with Jesuit Refugee Service (JRS), had invited the local church to the cathedral grounds to celebrate a Mass of thanksgiving followed by a festive social and dinner.

At the meal’s conclusion, the bishop offered a reflection on what this moment of independence meant to him and invited others to do likewise. One South Sudanese after another spoke powerfully and movingly of past struggles and dreams for the future. Unique lives, different perspectives, many tears, yet a clear and consistent theme: “At long last we are free from the humiliation of oppression!” The long-suffering South Sudanese had finally attained their freedom.

Pedro Arrupe, the Jesuit Superior General from 1965-83 and founder of JRS, reminded us “the heart of Jesuit identity and what ought to define our existence as followers of Jesus, is availability.”

Availability is the sum of our freedom (the grace of the Principle & Foundation) and passion (the grace of the call to accompany the Lord through the Spiritual Exercises and beyond.) Availability places us in South Sudan and Boston College, in retreat houses, classrooms, confessionals, studios and wherever we are privileged to witness and repeat the good news: For God did not send his son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world might be saved through Him.

Libertad y Pasión
Por: Kevin White, SJ

El 10 de julio del 2011, nos reunimos en la Catedral de Cristo Rey en Yei, Sudán del Sur. El día anterior, después de casi 40 años de guerra civil, exilio y moliente pobreza, Sudán del Sur declaraba su independencia del Norte. El Obispo Lokudu, de la diócesis de Yei, donde yo estaba sirviendo en el Servicio Jesuita para Refugiados (JRS), había invitado a la Iglesia local a los jardines de la catedral, a celebrar una misa de acción de gracias, seguida por festejos y una cena.

Concluida la cena, el Obispo reflexionó acerca de lo que este momento de independencia significaba para él, e invitó a otros a hacer lo mismo. Muchos sudaneses del sur hablaron fuerte y conmovedoramente de las luchas pasadas y de los sueños para el futuro. Vidas únicas, perspectivas diferentes, muchas lágrimas, no obstante, un tema claro y consistente: “¡Por fin libres de la humillación de la opresión!” Después de tanto sufrir, los sudaneses del sur habían alcanzado la libertad.

Pedro Arrupe, Superior General de los Jesuitas desde 1965-83 y fundador de JRS, nos recordó que “el corazón de la identidad Jesuita y lo que debe definir nuestra existencia como seguidores de Jesús, es la disponibilidad.”

Disponibilidad es la suma de nuestra libertad (la gracia del Principio y la Fundación) y pasión (la gracia del llamado a acompañar al Señor a través de los Ejercicios Espirituales y todavía más.) La disponibilidad nos ubica en Sudán del Sur y en Boston College, en casas de retiros, aulas, confesionarios, estudios y donde tengamos el privilegio de ser testigos y repetir la buena nueva: Que Dios no envió a su hijo al mundo, para condenar al mundo, sino para que el mundo se salvara a través de Él.

Fr. Kevin White, SJ, works with Jesuit Refugee Service/USA.


because you love me you sent your son Jesus to save me.
But not only and not ever just me,
but all people
in all places
in all time.
I know you love me and I want to respond to that love,
small though I am in comparison to your great love.
I wish to give witness to your love by my life.
Show me how.
Show me where
and with whom I am to pour myself out on your behalf
and I will live my life as a gift to be given.

F. Malyavin


The First Principle and Foundation

The Goal of our life is to live with God forever.
God, who loves us, gave us life.
Our own response of love allows God's life
to flow into us without limit.

All the things in this world are gifts from God,
Presented to us so that we can know God more easily
and make a return of love more readily.
As a result, we appreciate and use all these gifts of God
Insofar as they help us to develop as loving persons.
But if any of these gifts become the center of our lives,
They displace God
And so hinder our growth toward our goal.

In everyday life, then, we must hold ourselves in balance
Before all of these created gifts insofar as we have a choice
And are not bound by some obligation.
We should not fix our desires on health or sickness,
Wealth or poverty, success or failure, a long life or a short one.
For everything has the potential of calling forth in us
A deeper response to our life in God.

Our only desire and our one choice should be this:
I want and I choose what better leads
To God's deepening his life in me.

From the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius Loyola
(paraphrased by David L. Fleming, SJ)

The shallow consider liberty a release from all law, from every constraint. The wise man sees in it, on the contrary, the potent Law of Laws.
: Walt Whitman

Love is our true destiny. We do not find the meaning of life by ourselves alone — we find it with another.
: Thomas Merton

Love will cost you dearly.
And it will break your heart.
But in the end, it will save the world.
: Sarah Thebarge


Bari Tribe Dance on South Sudan Independence Day

Passionate Courage (T. Blanchard)

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