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The Jesuit Guide to (Almost) Everything - Ignatian Spirituality for Real Life

Item Number: 22625

Catalog Code: 9780061432682

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Jesuit Guide to (Almost) Everything

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Review Provided By - THE Catholic Book Review Site
Average Rating: This item received 5 stars overall.

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The Jesuit Guide to (Almost) Everything by Fr. James Martin S.J.


St. Ignatius Loyola (1491-1556), the founder of the Society of Jesus (aka the Jesuits), was known for his practical spirituality. The "way of Ignatius" has helped millions of people—from the doubtful seeker to the devout believer—find freedom, make friends, live simply, work sensibly, fall in love, experience joy, and enter into a relationship with God.

The Ignatian goal of "finding God in all things" eans that every part of our lives can lead us to God. The Jesuit Guide to (Almost) Everything shows us how this is possible, with user-friendly examples, humorous stories and anecdotes from the heroic and inspiring lives of Jesuit saints and average priests and brothers, as well as examples from Martin's twenty years as a Jesuit. The traditional wisdom that Jesuits use to help other people in their daily lives is easily applied, but not often explained well to the general public. The Jesuit Guide to (Almost) Everything translates these insights of St. Ignatius for a modern audience and reveals how we can find God—and how God can find us—in the real world of work, love, suffering, decisions, prayer, and friendship.

"The Jesuit Guide to Almost Everything is a rather surprising book. Did you know that 35 craters on the moon have been named after Jesuit scientists? Or that Jesuits discovered quinine (the modern anti-malarial called “Jesuit bark” in the 16th century)? Or that they invented the trap door, without which the Wicked Witch of the West might never make her timely exit, and Falstaff might never fall?

Well, that’s not what this book is about, not really. Not remotely. Given those little tidbits, a trivia-freak like me might rub her hands together in delight, anticipating a giddy read. The Jesuit Guide is a fun read. Fun in the way that sitting with a pal and discussing the exciting, ever-evolving way -the always beginning way- of prayer, and acquaintance and friendship with God can be fun, but also a little humbling and challenging, and ultimately quietening.

Fr. James Martin is a friend, but that’s not why I love his newest book. I love it because what he is writing is true, and warm and genially helpful to the seeker who perhaps has been reading scripture and practicing prayer for a little while -or who hasn’t been practicing at all, but feels a nameless tug for “something more”, and is suddenly feeling like there are too many forks in the road. If you need a bit of centering, this book will help. In it Fr. Martin, who clearly loves being a Jesuit and a priest, shares the Ignatian pathway; the spiritual exercises, practices and perspectives devised by St. Ignatius Loyola and still used today by Catholics and non-Catholics, alike." - Elizabeth Scalia, aka The Anchoress, in First Things - March 5, 2010 issue.

"For over 500 years, the Jesuit Order of Catholic priests, founded by St. Ignatius of Loyola, have enjoyed a well-deserved reputation as a society of scholars, educators, free-thinkers, and activists. In this digestible account of all things Jesuit, James Martin, S.J., encapsulates the uniquely Ignatian concept of spirituality. Translating the essence of the Jesuit philosophy into layman’s terms, he uses both traditional stories and personal anecdotes to vividly illustrate the Jesuit approach to God, friendship, social justice, decision-making, prayer, simplicity, obedience, and self-actualization. Martin’s engaging, intimate tone will appeal to anyone interested in understanding the history, the efficacy, and the universality of the Jesuit mission and way of life. Martin, the author of My Life with the Saints (2006), has a way of popularizing serious religious issues without trivializing their impact and significance." --Margaret Flanagan in Booklist



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9 1/10"  (23.1 cm) x 6 2/5"  (16.2 cm)
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Review Provided By - THE Catholic Book Review Site

This item received 5 stars overall. Fr. Martin has written a book to be treasured

After eleven years spent at Jesuit schools (high school, undergrad, grad school), I thought I had a good grasp on what Ignatian Spirituality consisted of and what the particular charism of the Jesuits was all about. Wrong! Fr. James Martin, once again, has written a gem of a book that is a welcome addition to the canon of contemporary texts of spirituality. In short, I loved this book and will keep it close by for easy reference.

Almost fifteen years ago, at my high school freshman orientation, I was first introduced to the Society of Jesus and Ignatian Spirituality. Two 10-page brochures provided me a quick background on Ignatius of Loyola, Jesuit education, and Ignatian Spirituality. In the years that followed, in undergrad and grad school, my exposure to “the way of Ignatius” stemmed from retreats, community service projects, campus ministry, and liturgies. None of those things, I know now, even began to scratch the surface.

Ignatian Spirituality is a ri Full Review...


St. Ignatius Loyola

St. Ignatius Loyola Feast Day:
Roman Rite Calendar - 07/31
Tridentine Calendar - 07/31

Patron Of: Jesuits, Retreats

    Spanish nobility. Youngest of twelve children. Page in the Spanish court of Ferdinand and Isabella. Military education. Soldier, entering the army in 1517, and serving in several campaigns. Wounded in the leg by a cannonball at the siege of Pampeluna on 20 May 1521, an injury that left him partially crippled for life. During his recuperation the only books he had access to were The Golden Legend, a collection of lives of the saints, and the Life of Christ by Ludolph the Carthusian. These books, and the time spent in contemplation, changed him.

    On his recovery he took a vow of chastity, hung his sword before the altar of the Virgin of Montserrat, and donned a pilgrim's robes. Lived in a cave from 1522 to 1523, contemplating the way to live a Christian life. Pilgrim to Rome and the Holy Land in 1523, where he worked to convert Muslims. In 1528 he began studying theology in Barcelona, Alcala, and Paris, receiving his degree on 14 March 1534. His meditations, prayers, visions and insights led to forming the Constitutions of the Society of Jesus on 15 August 1534; it received papal approval in 1541. Friend of James Lainez, Alonso Salmerón, Nicholas Bobadilla, Simón Rodriguez, Blessed Peter Faber, and Saint Francis Xavier, the group that formed the core of the new Society. He never used the term Jesuit, which was coined as an insult by his opponents; the Society today uses the term with pride. He traveled Europe and the Holy Lands, then settled in Rome to direct the Jesuits. His health suffered in later years, and he was nearly blind at death.

    The Jesuits today have over 500 universities and colleges, 30,000 members, and teach over 200,000 students each year.

    1491 at Loyola, Guipuzcoa, Spain as Inigo Lopez de Loyola

    of fever on 31 July 1556 at Rome, Italy

    27 July 1609 by Pope Paul V

    12 March 1622 by Pope Gregory XV

All information used with permission of the Patron Saint Index.

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