Institute Connects May 2018

Institute Connects

May 2018

News from the Jesuit Institute

Fr Martin Badenhorst OP speaks at the launch of “Divine Renovation”.(Picture: Russell Pollitt SJ)

Divine Renovation Book Launch:

Fr James Mallon, a Canadian priest and author of “Divine Renovation” will be visiting South Africa in August this year. The Jesuit Insitute together with the Department for Evangelization of the Catholic Archdiocese of Johannesburg and Alpha South Africa hosted the book launch. By launching the book in anticipation of Fr Mallon’s visit, it is hoped that South African Catholics would be encouraged to read the book before his visit. In this way, there will be better and more meaningful discussions to bring about rejuvenation much hoped for in our parishes.  Dominican priest and academic Fr Martin Badenhorst OP was the guest speaker. He offered a contextual vision of the book for the South African Catholic Church calling it a “cold shower”. Read more about the launch, here.

Delegates from JASCNET with the Jesuit Institute Team at our offices in Johannesburg. (Picture: Russell Pollitt SJ)

Delegates from Jesuit Apostolate Social Centres Network (JASCNET) visit Jesuit Institute:

Fr Charles Chilufya SJ has recently taken over as coordinator of JASCNET. In an effort to get to know the Jesuits’ social centres across Africa and to plan his work and decide a strategic direction as coordinator, he visited the Jesuit Institute with strategic planning consultant Kalonde Mungomba. JASCNET held a one-day workshop with staff of the Jesuit Institute and met individually with our team members. It was an opportunity for mutual sharing, learning, and to meet one another to find new ways of collaborating across Africa.

A mass during the Discernment in Common workshop in Harare, Zimbabwe. (Picture: Puleng Matsaneng)

Discernment in Common Workshop for Southern African Jesuits:

Puleng Matsaneng, of our spirituality team, was asked to facilitate a series of workshops on Discernment in Common for the Jesuit Province of Zimbabwe-Mozambique, to which South Africa belongs. In March, Puleng visited Mozambique for the first of these and in April she continued her work in Zimbabwe.  In Harare, she met with Jesuits across the province to share what she had heard during her time in Mozambique. She will now likely embark on a similar exercise in South Africa as part of this ongoing process.

SDT participants having lunch at Lumko, Johannesburg. (Picture: Annemarie Paulin-Campbell)

Spiritual Directors’ Training (SDT) in Johannesburg:

The second module of the 3-year Spiritual Directors Training (SDT) took place from 11-15 April 2018.

The focus in this module was on the life of Saint Ignatius and how his insights can be understood and applied to the practice of spiritual direction today.

Participants of Hearts on Fire programme in Bloemfontein. (Picture: Sr Prudence Cooper OP)

Hearts on Fire:

An introduction to Ignatian Spirituality was offered in Assisi, Bloemfontein. In attendance, were 24 sisters from 4 congregations and two laywomen from Lesotho. The programme was facilitated by Sr Claudia-Maria Mülherr OFM, Sr Eleanora Molai HF and Sr Prudence Cooper OP. Participants expressed that they had learned and experienced much about prayer in the Ignatian tradition which combined with their own apostolic spirituality.

Archbishop Buti Tlhagale OMI at the mass for bicentenary of the Catholic Church in South Africa. (Picture: Russell Pollitt SJ)

Bicentennial Celebrations of the Catholic Church in South Africa:

The team was present at the mass of thanksgiving to commemorate 200 years of the Catholic Church in South Africa held at what will be the site of South Africa’s newest Marian shrine in Johannesburg. Archbishop Buti Tlhagale OMI presided at the mass. In his homily, he recounted the many achievements and joys of the Church’s past but also the challenges that remain in the local church even after 200 years of its existence.  He thanked the missionaries who established the church, offering strong words to critics of these founding fathers, saying that they were not in cahoots with the colonial regime. Read more, here.

Earth Day Awareness Video: Our media team prepared a short video to mark Earth Day. We interviewed some inspiring people that are fighting to win the war on climate change and to raise our collective consciousness – perhaps, even, pricking our conscience a little. Watch the video.

Mini-Pause Retreat Series:

Our next mini-retreat morning will be on Saturday 12 May (the day before Mother’s Day) for any moms who would like time out from their busy lives to connect with God from 09.00 until 12.00. There are only a few more places available, email us to book.

Digital Pathfinding: The Jesuit Institute has teamed up with the Catholic Institute for Education (CIE) to host a seminar on digital media in the school community. Schools are struggling to come to grips with these new issues and we hope that this seminar will equip them with some strategies on how to deal with them.  We have secured a forensic psychologist who has a great deal of experience assisting schools with these challenges and have met with a number of representatives from social media platforms.  We will also be presenting a programme that schools could put in place to help children regulate their behaviour on online platforms and social media apps. It promises to be very cutting-edge and informative.

The seminar is relevant for all teachers (NOT just IT teachers!), principals and SMTs, parents, therapists, school lawyers, school board members and anyone else interested in safeguarding children. The seminar will be at the Sierra Hotel in Randburg on the 13-14 September. Register here.

Our online news, reflection and analysis website continues to grow its readership – a 5% increase on last month!  The most popular articles in April were:

Winter Living Theology 2018:

Fr Bryan Massingale, Professor of Theological and Social Ethics at Fordham University in New York, will deliver this year’s Winter Living Theology in South Africa. Fr Massingale is a priest of the Archdiocese of Milwaukee and previously taught at Marquette University. He is a much sort after speaker and will speak on Racial Justice and the Demands of Discipleship. He will deliver the lectures in Johannesburg on 26-28 June, Port Elizabeth on 3-5 July, Durban on 10-12 July and Cape Town on 17-18 July. You can find more information on the WLT2018 series on our website. To register email

Hearts on Fire:

This introductory programme into Ignatian Spirituality will be offered from 8 May to the 12 June 2018 at the Bryanston Methodist Church.

To book your place email



Eight-day Directed Retreat at the Sea: Want to spend quality time with God? Need to make an important decision? Time is running out to book your place on the eight-day individually directed retreat at St Dominic’s at The Bluff in Durban. It starts on the evening of the 1 June and ends on the morning of the 10 June. The retreat centre is only five minutes walk from the beach. It is a perfect time of the year to escape the Gauteng winter weather. To book email

The Institute Engages:

Besides our regular weekly columns, which can be found on our website, members of the Institute contribute to various media. The following article was recently published:

The death of Winnie Mandela marks the end of an era on 4 April 2018 in America Magazine by Anthony Egan SJ.

Jesuit Institute Spokesperson
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