Jesuit Tertianship in the Phillippines
maintained by Father Ray Guiao, SJ, an alumnus of and teacher at my own Saint Ignatius High School in Cleveland, Ohio.
Of this experience he writes:
Lots of people ask me, "What exactly are you going to the Philippines for?" My answer to them is, "I'll be doing my Jesuit Tertianship there." And after scratching their heads, they go ahead and ask, "What's Jesuit tertianship?" Here's a simple explanation.
Jesuit tertianship is the final phase of training for a Jesuit. It is a program that usually lasts seven to nine months, and it is a requirement for all Jesuits (priests and brothers) prior to pronouncing final vows in the Society of Jesus. There are currently about 27 Jesuit tertianship programs all over the world for Jesuits who are invited to this final phase of training. While a few tertianship programs exist in the U.S., I very much wanted to take this opportunity to do my tertianship in the land of my Filipino origins, for reasons which I will explain in various postings on this blog.
For us Jesuits, tertianship is a time of intensive reflection and renewal on our lives as a members of the Society of Jesus -- a kind of "spiritual sabbatical." The centerpiece of any Jesuit tertianship program is the Spiritual Exercises, otherwise known as the 30-day retreat. This will take place in the month of November in my tertianship program. Other activities include studying the various foundational documents of the Society of Jesus, as well as the rich history of the Society of Jesus. We also do various ministerial projects during tertianship -- a total of three projects in this particular program, including work with the poor and marginalized and spiritual and sacramental ministry.
I'll be sure to detail my experiences in the postings on this blog. Thanks for your interest in my progress, and most of all, thanks for your prayers on my behalf! Be assured of my own for you!
Insofar as my blog is written from the perspective of a man in the early stages of Jesuit formation, it is inherently limited to my four years of Jesuit life. It should be interesting, therefore, to have an opportunity to see through the eyes of one in the Society for over twenty years.