Why Jesuits are needed today
In February 2008 Pope Benedict XVI recalled the words of his predecessor Paul VI:
Wherever in the Church, even in the most difficult and extreme fields, at the crossroads of ideologies, in the social trenches, there has been and there is confrontation between the burning exigencies of man and the perennial message of the Gospel, here there have been, and there are Jesuits.
As much as ever before the Society needs men ‘with a deep and sound faith, a well-grounded culture and genuine human and social sensitivity’ who are able to bear witness to Christ at the frontiers ‘to help people understand that….there is a profound harmony between faith and reason, between the gospel spirit, the thirst for justice and initiatives for peace’. (Pope Benedict XVI 21.2.08)
From the very beginning of the history of the Society of Jesus, Jesuits have put themselves at the disposal of the Holy Father. As we have said of ourselves, 'A Jesuit is essentially a man on a mission, a mission he receives from the Holy Father and from his own religious superiors, but ultimately from Jesus Christ himself, the one sent by the Father' (General Congregation 34, 1995).