On This Day
1534 – Ignatius of Loyola and six classmates take initial vows, leading to the creation of the Society of Jesus in September 1540.
Ignatius of Loyola (born Iñigo López de Oñaz y Loyola; Basque: Ignazio Loiolakoa; Spanish: Ignacio de Loyola; Latin: Ignatius de Loyola; c. 23 October 1491 – 31 July 1556), venerated as Saint Ignatius of Loyola, was a Spanish Basque Catholic priest and theologian, who co-founded the religious order called the Society of Jesus (Jesuits) and became its first Superior General at Paris in 1541. The Jesuit order served the Pope as missionaries, and they were bound by a fourth vow of special obedience to the sovereign pontiff in regard to the missions. They therefore emerged as an important force during the time of the Counter-Reformation.
Ignatius is remembered as a talented spiritual director. He recorded his method in a celebrated treatise called the Spiritual Exercises, a simple set of meditations, prayers, and other mental exercises, first published in 1548.
Ignatius was beatified in 1609, and then canonized, receiving the title of Saint on 12 March 1622. His feast day is celebrated on 31 July. He is the patron saint of the Basque provinces of Gipuzkoa and Biscay as well as the Society of Jesus, and was declared patron saint of all spiritual retreats by Pope Pius XI in 1922. Ignatius is also a foremost patron saint of soldiers.
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Born On This Day
1787 – Eliza Lee Cabot Follen, American writer, editor, abolitionist (d. 1860)
Eliza Lee Cabot Follen (August 15, 1787 – January 26, 1860) was an American writer, editor, and abolitionist. In her early life, she contributed various pieces of prose and poetry to papers and magazines. In 1828, she married Prof. Charles Follen, who died on board the Lexington in 1840. During her married life, she published a variety of popular and useful books, all of which were characterized by her Christian piety. Among the works she gave to the press are, Selections from Fénelon, The Well-spent Hour, Words of Truth, The Sceptic, Married Life, Little Songs, Poems, Life of Charles Follen, Twilight Stories, Second Series of Little Songs, as well as a compilation of Home Dramas, and German Fairy Tales. Holding an interest in the religious instruction of the young, she edited, in 1829, the Christian Teacher’s Manual, and, from 1843 to 1850, the Child’s Friend. She died in Brookline, Massachusetts in 1860.
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