March 20, 2023 — Here’s the latest news from the Jesuits in Canada and the United States.
Fr. Christopher Calderón, SJ, has been named the next president of Cristo Rey Sacramento High School, effective July 1, 2023. “I longed to be a part of a Cristo Rey school, as its mission so clearly embodies the Society of Jesus’ call to walk with the excluded and journey with youth. … I have witnessed how its mission beautifully heeds the Society’s call and it holds up the core values of the Sisters of Mercy wholeheartedly. To be a part of it all is truly a privilege,” he said.
Fr. John P. Fitzgibbons, SJ, has been named chancellor of the University of San Francisco (USF). He will serve as a member of the President’s Cabinet and the Leadership Team, as well as the university’s chief mission officer. Prior to joining USF, Fr. Fitzgibbons was president of Regis University, where he served for 10 years. Returning to USF is a homecoming: He first came to USF in 2006 as an academic dean and vice president for administration.
Fr. Marcus Fryer, SJ, has been named the next principal of Arrupe Jesuit High School in Denver. He will assume the role at the end of this academic year when Fr. John Nugent, SJ, finishes his term. Since 2018, Fr. Fryer has been serving at Arrupe Jesuit High School, first as the pastoral director, then as the dean of students. He is also a member of the school’s board.
Raj Vijayakumar, SJ, pronounced first vows of poverty, chastity and obedience in the Society of Jesus on Feb. 10, 2023, at the Regis College chapel in Toronto. He is currently studying for a Master of Divinity at Regis College.
Milestones & Honors
Fr. Michael J. Garanzini, SJ, was honored with the 2023 Rev. Theodore M. Hesburgh, CSC, Award from the Association of Catholic Colleges and Universities (ACCU) in Washington, D.C., on Feb. 4, 2023. He was honored for his lifelong contributions to Catholic higher education, including service as president of the Association of Jesuit Colleges & Universities and Loyola University Chicago; Secretary of Higher Education for the Society of Jesus; and founder of the International Association of Jesuit Universities. Read more.
Recently, three newly-discovered asteroids were named after Jesuits, including one for U.S. Jesuit Fr. Bill Stoeger, SJ (1943–2014), who was a cosmologist and theologian at the Vatican Observatory. Br. Bob Macke, SJ, an astronomer at the Vatican Observatory, created this graphic that includes a selection of asteroids named for Jesuits.
Fr. Steve Katsouros, SJ, received the Gannon Award from Loyola School in New York City on Feb. 3, 2023, where he had worked earlier in his career. The award is given to those who exemplifies qualities from the life and work of Fr. Robert I. Gannon, SJ, of the class of 1909: wit, wisdom, faith and generosity.
Fr. AJ Rizzo, SJ, president of Scranton Preparatory School, blessed and dedicated the school’s athletic court in January in honor of former president Fr. Herb Keller, SJ. Fr. Keller said that “building men and women of faith and integrity is Scranton Prep’s most important building project.”
Fr. James Pierce, SJ, Helps Parish Celebrate Black History Month
As they began their observance of Black History Month, St. Katharine Drexel Parish in Boston held a special Mass on Feb. 5, 2023, with Fr. James Pierce, SJ, where he spoke about his own journey to the priesthood and the Society of Jesus.
When he was in high school, his father made him join the Newman Club, and he was invited to attend a retreat run by Jesuits. He was touched by their preaching, and he attended the retreat again the following year. That time, he found some vocation literature, and when it was his turn to speak with one of the Jesuits about his experience, he asked about the process of joining the order. “That’s how I became a Black Jesuit,” he told the assembly, who responded with applause. Read more.
Cardinal Czerny Returns to Alma Mater Gonzaga for Climate Change Lecture
Cardinal Michael Czerny, SJ, returned to his alma mater, Gonzaga University, on March 9, 2023, to deliver a talk with practical advice and inspiration for addressing the climate crisis. He emphasized Pope Francis’ challenge that caring for the planet will take all its residents’ best efforts.
Cardinal Czerny, who graduated from Gonzaga in 1968, is the prefect of the Vatican Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development, the Catholic Church’s leader in efforts to become better caretakers of the planet. Read more.
Jesuit’s Painting Dedicated at Xavier High School
“Friends in the Lord: Ignatius, Francis, and Peter,” an oil on canvas by Fr. Michael Tunney, SJ, was dedicated by the Xavier High School community in New York City on Jan. 19, 2023.
The art, which Fr. Tunney, SJ, describes as a modern interpretation of the original three Jesuit companions, was commissioned by Xavier High in honor of its 175th anniversary.
“I wanted to offer a fresh and contemporary take on Xavier,” said Fr. Tunney. “I also readily appreciate how important community, friendship and brotherhood are to our Jesuit high school students. The inclusion of Ignatius and Peter Faber, Xavier’s original companions and future fellow Jesuits, came to me quickly as equal partners in the composition.”
Jesuit Walter J. Smith’s new book “Faith, Food, & Friendship: Reflections and Recipes from a Jesuit’s Abundant Life” is both a memoir and cookbook. Currently a professor at the Boston College School of Theology and Ministry, Fr. Smith has had a wide-ranging career as a clinician, consultant, professor, department chair, dean, chancellor, trustee and chief executive officer — and he’s also an accomplished cook.
The book includes 175 classic, original or adapted recipes, from dal chawal, an Indian dish once recommended to him by Mother Teresa, to the ’21’ burger popularized by the iconic Manhattan speakeasy-turned-restaurant.
Fr. Brendan Lally, SJ’s new book “Journey to the Heart of God: Stories that Teach; Prayers that Reach the Very Heart of God,” is a collection of prayers, reflections, poetry and stories of God’s Providence meant to be “prayed” not “read.” While the prayers, reflections, and stories are from Fr. Lally’s journeys, the focus is on the way God has made His presence felt in each of our lives, if we listen for it.
“Forbidden: Receiving Pope Francis’s Condemnation of Nuclear Weapons” is the final book by Fr. Drew Christiansen, SJ, former editor of America magazine who passed away last year. Co-edited with Carole Sargent, chapters from the perspectives of missile personnel and the military chain of command, industrialists and legislators, and citizen activists show how we might achieve a nuclear-free world.