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Celebrating the 400th Anniversary of the Canonization of St. Ignatius

Two recent milestones celebrated by the Jesuit community—a 500th anniversary and a 400th anniversary—bring us reason for joy and cause for hope.
500th Anniversary of the Ignatius’ “Cannonball Moment” | Ignatian Jubilee Year
May 20, 2021, marked the 500th anniversary of a cannonball shattering the legs of St. Ignatius at the battle of Pamplona in 1521. Often referred to as his “cannonball moment,” this traumatic injury was the beginning of Ignatius' spiritual journey and the great conversion of his life from soldier to servant of Christ. From May 2021 until July 2022 the Society of Jesus celebrates an Ignatian Year

400th Anniversary of the Canonization of Ignatius Loyola
On March 12, 2022, we honored the 400th anniversary of the canonization of Ignatius Loyola, who was canonized in 1622 alongside Francis Xavier, Teresa of Avila, Isidore Labrador and Philip Neri. Pope Francis celebrated a global Mass, streamed live across the world from the Church of the Gesu in Rome.

Here at Loyola, the marching band greeted students in the Piazza on Friday, March 11—what students came to call “Iggy Day.” Surprises and treats like cake and cookies offered Ramblers a moment to celebrate during lunch. Students, faculty and staff gathered for a special morning Mass, raffles were held over the PA at the start of each period throughout the day, inspiring quotes from St. Ignatius were displayed on digital screens around the building, faculty and staff enjoyed a free lunch, and Loyola Academy President Rev. Patrick E. McGrath, SJ, said the Daily Examen. 

In solidarity with the people of Ukraine and in keeping with the legacy of our founder, Friday’s festivities also included a “for and with others” component.  As a community, Loyola partnered with Jesuit Refugee Service to host a $2 dress down to support the people displaced by the war in Eastern Europe.  All Ramblers were encouraged to wear maroon and gold or blue and yellow, the colors of the Ukrainian flag. 

WGN Reporter Mike Lowe ’97 was on location at LA to capture much of the day’s events. Mike spoke with incoming president Fr. Greg Ostdiek about the 400th anniversary of the canonization of Ignatius and how the life and work of this soldier-turned-saint remains relevant in today’s world.  View this special segment here.  

In an email inviting the Loyola Academy community to tune in to Pope Francis’ Mass, this short reflection from John Phillips ’22 was shared: 

"For me, this event immediately calls to mind the acronym synonymous with Ignatius: AMDG—Ad majorem Dei gloriam. After his conversion, Ignatius lived his whole life to give glory to God. In the four years I have been in high school, I am so grateful that Loyola’s Jesuit education has shown me this same purpose. Not only does each day at Loyola challenge my mind to grow, but with this Jesuit education, each moment invites me to live my life for the glory of God. I will remain forever indebted to Loyola for molding both my mind and my heart to love my God and to love my neighbor in every moment, just like Ignatius."

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