Roman Catholics will observe Saturday, July 31, the Feast of Saint Ignatius (San Ignacio) of Loyola, the revered founder and first superior general of the Society of Jesus (SJ), one of the largest religious orders in the world.
Bishop Mylo Hubert Vergara will preside over a high mass at 5:30 p.m. tomorrow at the St. Ignatius of Loyola Parish in Ususan, Taguig City. Holy masses will also be held at 6 a.m. and at 10 a.m.
A motorcade procession will be held Friday, July 30, at 4 p.m. It will be followed by the praying of the holy rosary and the novena prayer at the church.
Missionary and charitable organizations run by the Society of Jesus, which is engaged in ministries in about 112 countries, will also offer special masses in honor of the popular Spanish saint.
Special prayers will also be offered today to the Madonna Della Strada, a title of the Blessed Mother venerated as the patroness of the SJ.
Born on October 23, 1491, St. Ignatius 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.
He died on July 31, 1556 and was beatified in 1609, and then canonized on March 12, 1622. 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. St. Ignatius is also a foremost patron saint of soldiers.
Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI said St. Ignatius was “above all a man of God who gave the first place of his life to God. He was a man of profound prayer which found its center and its culmination in the daily Eucharistic celebration.”