Vietnamese Jesuits celebrated the solemn opening Mass for the Ignatian Year on Saturday, May 22, 2021, at the Church of the Jesuit-run Epiphany Parish in Thu Duc, Hochiminh City, Vietnam. The Mass was presided by Fr. Provincial Vincent Pham Van Mam, SJ, together with some Jesuits and parishioners. Because of COVID 19 restrictions, maximum in-person attendance at Mass was limited to 30 attendees. Therefore, the Mass was also live-streamed on the Province’s YouTube channel.
In his homily, Fr. Provincial Vincent Pham Van Mam, SJ, invited participants to discover 3 fundamental dimensions of the conversion of St. Ignatius Loyola: conversion of vision, conversion of mission, and conversion of service.
Fr. Mam recalled the battle of Pamplona and the time of convalescence which led Ignatius “to a landmark decision: instead of being a knight in the service of the king and court of Spain, he aspired to be a knight in the service of Christ.” “Conversion of vision leads to conversion of the mission. To achieve this, God gradually taught Ignatius like a teacher teaching a child,” he said.
“After the dark night of faith, God gave him the gift of understanding the truths of faith: about God, the Trinity, Creation, Redemption, the Eucharist and the Church; and in Cardoner, he was given intense supernatural light to confirm the truths of the faith taught earlier and at the same time, the conviction of his apostolic vocation to cooperate with Jesus in God’s saving plan. With this illumination, Ignatius’ supernatural vision of the world and history was shaped, and at the same time transformed him from wishing to live an ascetic life as a hermit to sacrificing himself to help souls,” Fr. Mam emphasized.
At the end of his homily, Fr. Mam invited the community “to ask for the grace of conversion to practice radical conversion, on personal, communal and institutional levels, as well as the conviction that a radical conversion is possible in the Spirit.”
Full homily: click here