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Impelling Spirit: Revisiting a Founding Experience: 1539, Iqnatius of Loyola and His Companions [Paperback]

By Joseph F. Conwell (Author)
Our Price $ 23.80  
Retail Value $ 28.00  
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Item Number 135696  
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Item Specifications...

Pages   624
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 9.02" Width: 5.92" Height: 1.53"
Weight:   2.01 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Dec 31, 1997
Publisher   Loyola Press
ISBN  0829408649  
EAN  9780829408645  

Availability  71 units.
Availability accurate as of May 27, 2017 08:14.
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Item Description...
Impelling Spirit is a book about Jesuit spirituality as seen in its origins. As such it responds to the challenge of Vatican II that the appropriate renewal of religious life demands a return to the sources of Christian life and the spirit and aims of the founders of an institute. The instrument the author employs is a 1539 document Ignatius and his companions drafted for Pope Paul III as an apostolic letter addressed to themselves; this document - long neglected and largely unknown - clearly reveals how they understood themselves and their way of life. It demonstrates that the spirit and aims of the Society, though radical in 1539, were also deeply rooted in the Christian tradition.

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More About Joseph F. Conwell

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Conwell, who has a doctorate in ascetical and mystical theology from Gregorian University (Rome), taught theology at Gonzaga University (Spokane, Washington) for nearly twenty years, and then spent a decade as the director of tertianship for the Oregon Province.

Joseph F. Conwell was born in 1919.

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Product Categories
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Reviews - What do our customers think?
Informative, enjoyable and inspiring  Aug 27, 2000
This is a masterpiece, a must for all Jesuits and those interested in the religious history of the West, esp. of the Late Middle Ages. Fr. Conwell, a man of immense erudition, weaved such an interesting tapestry based on the 1539 text of The First Sketch of the Institute of the Society of Jesus or Cum ex plurium, using the first three Latin words of a papal document. You get an in-depth understanding of the times and spirit of the first Jesuits through the analysis of the the key-words of the text. There are many gems in the copious footnotes also. E.g., "...According to the accepted system, the clergy prayed, the nobles protected, and the people provided, but down the ages the peasant experience has often been that the clergy preyed, the nobles preyed, and the people prayed and paid..." (p.444) Against the background of so much corruption and immorality in the Church, you get inspired by the author's unravelling of the inner core of the lives and dedication of so many people, Francis, Dominic and the first Jesuits... who responded so totally to the Impelling Spirit. That's a beautiful and apt title. The Spirit is very tangible throughout the book.
A Classic Work of Jesuit Spirituality  May 27, 2000
Father Joseph Conwell, SJ's work will remain as a classic in the history of Jesuit spirituality for many years to come. This book is the culmination of almost fifteen years of serious scholarship and writing. His hard work shines through very clearly.

The book is concerned with an early Jesuit document known as "Cum Ex Plurium" which was prepared for Pope Paul III in 1539. The document was the the precursor to the "Formula of the Institute," which is the official governing document of the Society of Jesus. The book concerns itself with this early rough draft in a meticulously crafted style by following the meaning of each word or set of terms in their historical context and within the evolution of St. Ignatius' personal history. From the first word to the last, Father Conwell has clearly laid out the evolution of the ideas surrounding the creation of the Jesuits. He also has also drawn inspiration from this document and tries to make the founder's intentions come alive for the reader. Father Conwell peppers this work with sage advice about the discernment of spirits, which is so central to Ignatian spirituality. He points out St. Ignatius' own experience of discernment from reading the movements, making the decision, finding confirmation, readiness for action, movements for further discernment, and taking action (356-358). He also offers little tid-bits of advice for religious and anyone interested in following a spiritual path. These nuggets of insight are well worth the read. The Epilogue is one of the finest writings of hope as well as a challenge for the future of the Jesuits.

"Impelling Spirit" is a must read for anyone interested in the evolution of the spirituality and governance of the Jesuits. It will stand as a classic bench mark for future generations due to its careful scholarship. It looks like a daunting task to read at 400+ pages, but it is well worth the effort. This book would also be one that would prove helpful to anyone interested in more deeply exploring their own religious vocation. I high also highly recommend this book to anyone who wishes to find the Spirit that impels him or her. "Agite, igitur: Get moving! Follow the Spirit wherever the Spirit leads you" (421).


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