News
Society of Jesus Celebrates the Feast of St. Aloysius Gonzaga, SJ

June 21, 2017 — Today is the feast day of St. Aloysius Gonzaga, an Italian Jesuit known for his courage in serving the sick and his dedication to the education of young students.

Born into a noble family in Castiglione, Italy, St. Aloysius’ father, the Marquis of Castiglione, groomed him for a military career. At the age of eight, he went to serve in the court of the Grand Duke Francesco I de ’Medici and was then sent to Florence for his formal education.

Shortly thereafter, St. Aloysius began suffering from kidney disease, which he saw as a blessing as it allowed him time to reflect and pray. It was during this time that he first felt called to the priesthood. He received his First Communion from St. Charles Borromeo in July 1580.

In the wake of his illness, St. Aloysius spent his time teaching catechism to poor young men, instead of continuing his military training. Against his father’s wishes, St. Aloysius announced his intent to join the Society of Jesus. At 18 years old, he renounced his title and lands.

In 1585, St. Aloysius entered the Jesuits and studied under St. Robert Bellarmine, SJ, who acted as his spiritual adviser. He professed First Vows in 1587 and studied at the Roman College.

In 1591, a plague swept over Rome. St. Aloysius volunteered to serve at the Jesuit-established hospital, where he and his fellow Jesuits worked directly with the infected. St. Aloysius begged for alms for the victims and also worked one-on-one to feed and clean those affected by the epidemic. He contracted the plague and his health declined quickly.

St. Aloysius Gonzaga died in Rome on June 21, 1591, at the age of 23. He was canonized in 1726 by Pope Benedict XIII. St. Aloysius is the patron saint of youth, students and AIDS patients and caregivers.

Many academic institutions have been named in his honor, including Gonzaga University in Spokane, Washington, and Gonzaga College High School in Washington, DC.

[Source: Ignatian Spirituality, American Catholic, Catholic Online]





Recent News

July 22, 2020 — Pope Francis declared Fr. Eusebio Kino, SJ, venerable on July 10.

July 14, 2020 — After four ordinations went off without a hitch last week, Fr. Scott Santarosa, SJ, provincial of the Jesuits West Province, had reason to be hopeful.

June 30, 2020 — Fr. Frank Buckley, SJ, clinical director of the Center at Blessed Sacrament, the Jesuit parish in Hollywood, shares how the parish has responded to the pandemic.

June 25, 2020 — Fr. Chris Corbally, SJ, an astronomer at the Vatican Observatory in Arizona, now has an asteroid named for him.

June 24, 2020 — Dr. Fauci explains how his Jesuit education helped prepare him for his work in public health.

June 23, 2020 — Jack Krouse, SJ, of Jesuits West, was ordained to the diaconate at Saint Ignatius Church in Paris on June 20.

June 19, 2020 — It is with great joy that the Jesuits West Province announces ordination dates have been set next month for six Jesuits of the province.

view all news

Search news

Publications

Jesuits West Magazine - Spring 2020

Jesuits West Magazine - Fall 2019

Jesuits West Magazine - Spring 2019


Companions
Fall, 2019

Companions
Summer, 2019

Companions
Fall, 2018


Loyola Institute for Spirituality
Loyola Institute for Spirituality (LIS), founded in 1997, is located in Orange, CA. LIS provides many programs and services for individuals, parishes, and dioceses throughout Southern California and beyond.