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Jesuit Conference of Asia-Pacific News

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Jesuit Bulletin

Two Jesuits Professed First Vows

After completing their two-year noviceship in Myanmar, Leonard Mah and Joel Yuen…
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Scholastics and Brothers Meeting 2016

by Nalerin Erone, SJ Winter in Seoul, Korea did not deter 39 Jesuits Scholastics and…
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We have a new Superior General!

The 36th general congregation of the Society of Jesus has elected Fr. Arturo Sosa Abascal…
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Regional Office Announcement October 2016

Here are some recent announcements from the Jesuit Regional Office of Malaysia-Singapore:…
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The Society of Jesus was founded by St. Ignatius of Loyola and nine companions (Francis Xavier, Peter Faber, Diego Laínez, Simão Rodrigues, Alfonso Salmerón, Nicolás Bobadilla, Claude Jay, Paschase Broët, Jean Codure) in the early 16th century.

St. Ignatius was a Basque nobleman, courtier and soldier, who later renounced his worldly ways and became a mystic. While studying at the University of Paris, Ignatius formed a fellowship with a group of students who shared his desire of serving the Lord.

Ignatius and six of the first companions took private vows after completing their studies, and had wanted to proceed to serve the Lord in the Holy Land. But they were unable to go due to the precarious situation there at the time. A mystical experience at La Storta, just outside the Eternal City, prompted Ignatius to lead the companions to Rome and place themselves under the service of the Pope. In 1540, their petition to become a religious institute was approved by Pope Paul III.

NEW BEGINNINGS IN MALAYA

The first Jesuit to arrive in Malaya was St. Francis Xavier. He visited Malacca in 1545, and subsequently, he sent Fr. Francisco Perez and Br. Roque de Oliveira to Malacca to start a community and school. After Malacca had fallen to the Dutch in 1641, the Jesuits, together with other religious and priests, were expelled from Malacca.

The society returned to Malaya in the mid 20th century with the arrival of two French Jesuits by way of China- Frs. Andrew Joilet and Monsterleet from the Champagne province. Fr. Joilet started working at the Church of the Sacred Heart in Singapore, before moving north to serve in Kota Bahru, while Fr. Monsterleet did catechetical work among the school children in Singapore for a few months. They were soon followed by Jesuits from Canada and the United States. Fr. James Kearney from the Oregon province was the editor of the Malayan Catholic News from 1951 to 1959, and Canadian Frs. Berube and Eugene Audet were respectively assigned to work at the Cathedral of the Good Shepherd in Singapore and as chaplain to the Convent School in Penang.

Fr. Patrick Joy, an Irish Jesuit, was appointed superior of the Jesuits in Malaya in 1951. Soon after he arrived in Singapore, with the support of Bishop Michael Olcomendy, he initiated the construction of a hostel for trainee teachers. The Kingsmead Hall Jesuit community and student hostel started operations in 1954. The first Jesuit community in Singapore consisted of Frs. Patrick Joy, Kevin O'Dwyer, James Kearney and Brian Kelly, who also served as hostel warden. The Church of St. Ignatius, adjacent to Kingsmead Hall, was opened in 1961, and Fr. O'Dwyer became the first parish priest.

In 1955, Bishop Dominic Vendargon of the newly erected diocese of Kuala Lumpur invited the Jesuits to work there. They accepted the offer and started planning for the construction of a church and youth centre. The Church of St. Francis Xavier and Youth Centre were opened in 1961 in Petaling Jaya. Fr. Geoffrey Murphy was appointed parish priest, and Fr. Brian Kelly assumed the role of warden of the centre.

Vocations FAQ

JESUIT VOCATIONS FAQ

Q1: How do I know God is calling me to be a Jesuit?

The Lord calls each of us differently to different vocations. Therefore, there is no single, straightforward answer to your question. Did you have a profound spiritual experience? Do you feel drawn to the priesthood or religious life? Do you have the longing to do more for God and the Church? Do you question whether your current state of life is for you and believe that there is more to life? These are examples of subtle signs that indicate you may have a calling. However, if you are serious about knowing and doing God's will, and wish for a more definitive answer, then you should contact us immediately and let us help you in your discernment.

Q2: What must I do before I can enter the Society of Jesus?

Becoming a Jesuit is not only a major decision for you but also for the Society. Therefore it is necessary that you enter into a formal discernment process or candidacy programme in order to have the time and resources to help you see where the Lord is directing you. The programme is usually about a year long, but it could be longer if necessary. It entails activities such as regular spiritual direction, days of recollection, retreats and exposure to various Jesuit ministries. Please contact us for more details.

Q3: Must I remain with the candidacy programme for its entire duration?

There are no strings attached – candidates are free to leave the programme at any time.

Q4: If I choose not to enter the Society after the candidacy programme, then wouldn't I have wasted a year or more?

No. Your main objective in joining the candidacy programme is to discern God's will for you. If you have indeed been honest with yourself and made a good discernment, then you must also have received greater clarity to what you are seeking. You would also have grown in your relationship with the Lord, and developed a greater awareness and understanding of yourself. Thus, your time would never be wasted.

Q5: After completing the candidacy programme, I feel that I am called to be a Jesuit. What should I do then?

You may then apply to enter the novitiate programme. The novitiate programme, which is two years long, helps you get acquainted with Jesuit spirituality and identity, and where you would be immersed into the Society's culture, tradition and our way of proceeding. Application deadline is 1 September in the year before the one in which you wish to enter. The vocation director will provide you with more information on the application process.

Q6: If I get accepted by the Society of Jesus, does it mean that I will eventually become an ordained priest?

Not necessarily. You may become either a priest or a professed brother. You are generally requested to state your intention (either for priesthood or brotherhood) prior to entering the novitiate, although there are those who remain "indifferent" during their noviceship. The formation for each category is different. For those who intend to be ordained ministers, they will continue with priestly studies upon completion of noviceship and after taking their first vows. Those who become Jesuit brothers after first vows will be expected to complete at least two years of theological studies and usually will also be sent for further formation relevant to their future ministries.

Q7: I heard that Jesuit formation is very long. Is it true?

Considering Jesuits are called to "go anywhere, at anytime, to do almost anything, to serve the Lord and for His greater glory", Jesuit formation is not long at all. We must be trained well enough, not only to handle different situations, but excel in them. The lengthy formation period is therefore a reflection on the care the Society takes in preparing our men for mission. It usually takes at least ten years to form a Jesuit priest, from his entrance into the Society until his priestly ordination (stages of formation: novitiate, philosophate, regency, theologate), and about another five years before he completes tertianship prior to final vows. Formation period for Jesuit brothers varies. Please contact the vocation director for more details on Jesuit formation.

Find Us

The Jesuits of the Malaysia-Singapore region has altogether three communities: one in Singapore and two in West Malaysia.

The community in Singapore is located in Kingsmead Hall, next to the Church of St. Ignatius. Both the St. Francis Xavier Jesuit Residence and the Loyola Jesuit Novitiate are housed there. The regional curia (administrative centre) is also situated in Kingsmead Hall.

The Residence of Pedro Arrupe in Taman Rinting, Masai, Johore is one of the two communities of West Malaysia. The other community is in Xavier Hall, located within the Church of St. Francis Xavier in Petaling Jaya, and houses the  Residence of St. Francis Xavier.

General Enquires
: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
: +65 6463 6022
: +65 6467 7752
COMMUNITY IN PETALING JAYA
St. Francis Xavier Residence
Xavier Hall
135 Jalan Gasing
46000 Petaling Jaya
Selangor, Malaysia 
: +60 3 7956 5134
    +60 3 7958 8381
: +60 3 7954 6659
 
REGIONAL OFFICE
MAS Jesuit Regional Curia
Kingsmead Hall
8 Victoria Park Road
SINGAPORE 266492 
: +65 6463 6022
 
COMMUNITY IN SINGAPORE
St. Francis Xavier Residence
Kingsmead Hall
8 Victoria Park Road
SINGAPORE 266492 
: +65 6466 3225
: +65 6466 8857
COMMUNITY IN MASAI, JOHOR
Arrupe House
16 & 18 Jalan Beringin
Taman Rinting
81750 Masai
Johor, Malaysia
: +60 07 386 1068
    +60 07 388 0137
: +60 07 386 1176

Join Us

Is God calling you to be a Jesuit? Is He calling you to the priesthood or religious life? Yes. Maybe. Or you simply don't know. Amid the noises of the world, it is sometimes difficult to hear what the Lord has to say. Contact us and allow us to assist you in your discernment.

Contact us if you feel curious and wish to know more about the Society of Jesus and Jesuit Vocation.

Contact:
Office of the Vocation Director 
Kingsmead Hall
8 Victoria Park Road
SINGAPORE 266492
                    : +65 9711 9717
  : This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
    Like us on Facebook

Where We Are

The Jesuits of the Malaysia-Singapore region has altogether three communities: one in Singapore and two in West Malaysia.

The community in Singapore is located in Kingsmead Hall, next to the Church of St. Ignatius. Both the St. Francis Xavier Jesuit Residence and the Loyola Jesuit Novitiate are housed there. The regional curia (administrative centre) is also situated in Kingsmead Hall.

The Residence of Pedro Arrupe in Taman Rinting, Masai, Johore is one of the two communities of West Malaysia. The other community is in Xavier Hall, located within the Church of St. Francis Xavier in Petaling Jaya, and houses the  Residence of St. Francis Xavier.

General Enquires
: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
: +65 6463 6022
: +65 6467 7752
COMMUNITY IN PETALING JAYA
St. Francis Xavier Residence
Xavier Hall
Jalan Gasing
46000 Petaling Jaya
Selangor, Malaysia
: +60 3 7956 5134
    +60 3 7958 8381
: +60 3 7954 6659
 
REGIONAL OFFICE
MAS Jesuit Regional Curia
Kingsmead Hall
8 Victoria Park Road
SINGAPORE 266492
: +65 6463 6022
 
COMMUNITY IN SINGAPORE
St. Francis Xavier Residence
Kingsmead Hall
8 Victoria Park Road
SINGAPORE 266492
: +65 6466 3225
: +65 6466 8857
COMMUNITY IN MASAI, JOHOR
Arrupe House
16 & 18 Jalan Beringin
Taman Rinting
81750 Masai
Johor, Malaysia
: +60 07 386 1068
    +60 07 388 0137
: +60 07 386 1176