Putting Our Gifts Together
When we offer gifts and our gift-giving is matched by the gifts of another, we find ourselves living in a community of generosity. This was the experience of the first Jesuits when they met as roommates at the University of Paris so many years ago.
As you’ve undoubtedly already heard, on Tuesday Pope Francis canonized St. Pierre Favre, SJ (Peter Faber) and so the three original companions are now all saints. Ignacio de Loyola, Francisco Javier, and Pierre Favre each had distinct gifts and each would have lived a remarkable life if they had never met and lived together. But they did meet and time would prove that their generous spirits complemented well one another and this provided for something new to happen, something that definitely could not have happened if they had not pooled their gifts.
Pierre was known for his gift of gentle spiritual companionship, seeing the best in those he encountered and drawing them more deeply into a continual awareness of God’s constant presence in their lives. Ignacio provided Pierre with the Spiritual Exercises and this gift of framing the spiritual life paired naturally with Pierre’s own gifts. Once Francisco’s bold courage was thrown into the mix the nascent religious family had its founding.