Historic Visit with Jesuit Superior General Invigorates US Jesuit Presidents and Board Chairs

On Friday, October 11th, Rev. Adolfo Nicolás, S.J., Superior General of the Society of Jesus, met for the first time with all presidents and board of trustee chairs of the 28 Jesuit colleges and universities in the United States.
Newsroom
Press releases

Historic Visit with Jesuit Superior General Invigorates US Jesuit Presidents and Board Chairs
Thursday, October 17, 2013


Rev. Adolfo Nicolás, S.J., Jesuit Superior General, spoke at Loyola Chicago

October 17, 2013

Contact: Deanna I. Howes, Director of Communications, AJCU
(202) 862-9893, dhowes@ajcunet.edu

WASHINGTON, DC – On Friday, October 11th, Rev. Adolfo Nicolás, S.J., Superior General of the Society of Jesus, met for the first time with all presidents and board of trustee chairs of the 28 Jesuit colleges and universities in the United States. During this historic meeting at Loyola University Chicago, Fr. Nicolás shared his thoughts on how the spirituality of St. Ignatius of Loyola (founder of the Society of Jesus) can inspire the presidents’ and chairs’ leadership of their institutions today.

Fr. Nicolás said, “In the understanding of St. Ignatius, the principal function of a leader is to help the members of a community grow to become the living presence of God in the world. In the Ignatian concept of service, there is always the very important fact that growth leads to transformation. If there is no transformation, the process has failed.”

Since he was elected to his position as Superior General in 2008, Fr. Nicolás has spoken across the world as the leader of the Society of Jesus. This was his first meeting with both US Jesuit presidents and board chairs, two groups that also met together for the first time to discuss ways they can strengthen their relationship as collaborative leaders in US Jesuit higher education, especially in light of the declining number of Jesuits on campuses across the country. Fr. Nicolás recognized the significant presence of lay leaders (including eight lay presidents) at Jesuit institutions and also encouraged them to promote Jesuit vocations on campus.

Fr. Nicolás challenged the presidents and board chairs, along with the Jesuit provincials of the US, to decide how they can more effectively lead their institutions in the future. He asked, “What selfless actions—based in the freedom, generosity, and shared values as a community committed to Jesuit higher education—might God be asking you to lead at your particular institution?” He then asked the same question about the way all 28 institutions could collaborate with each other. He said, “I have no doubt that you are the right group to begin with consideration of these questions, for you have the talents and temperament, the head and heart, to do what needs to be done.”

Fr. Nicolás concluded his talk by thanking attendees for their service to US Jesuit higher education. He said, “Jesuit, Catholic institutions of higher education would not be the important apostolic instruments they have become without you. They will not flourish in the future without your commitment and hard work. Thank you for being part of this important apostolate of the Society of Jesus.”


Photos by Bruce Powell

Quote of the week

"One of the key phrases capturing the charism of Ignatian spirituality is “to love and serve in all things.” Here lies the key to Jesuit higher education in the 21st century. For a Jesuit university should ask more of its students by challenging them to make Ignatius’ charge—his notion of service—their own."
Rev. Kevin P. Quinn, S.J., President, University of Scranton


Meet the AJCU President

On April 1, 2013, Rev. Michael J. Sheeran became president of the Association of Jesu...
Read more

Federal Relations


AJCU Federal Relations Network is the lobbying arm of the Association of Jesuit Colleges and Universities and comprised of at least one representative from each one of the twenty-eight Jesuit Colleges and Universities. The Network is kept up to date on an on-going basis by the Vice President for Federal Relations on all issues relating to Appropriations, budget, higher education authorization issues and taxes. The Network meets annually in September for a Legislative Conference and also participates in the Annual Committee for Education Funding Legislative Conference and Awards Dinner.
Learn More

AJCU Conferences


The 35+ Conferences sponsored by the Association of Jesuit Colleges and Universities (AJCU) are affinity groups within the AJCU Network. The Conferences provide a forum for the exchange of ideas, information and best practices; support the professional development of their members; and present opportunities for AJCU representatives to discuss opportunities and challenges in Jesuit higher education. Most of the AJCU Conference groups meet in person at least once a year, and many of them communicate regularly through an AJCU listserv.
Learn More

International Outreach


The member institutions of the Association of Jesuit Colleges and Universities (AJCU) are committed to developing programs and partnerships that advance international education and support initiatives that advance global citizenship.
Learn More