Advancing Our Mission
Your Gifts at Work... Helping Senior Jesuits
Deirdre Banscher, RN, health care coordinator for the Maryland Province, said:
“Service to one’s own community is part of the Jesuit mission, and there seems to be no limit to the scope of mutual service I have observed. The generosity of Jesuits to one another has really been apparent.”
ura personalis, care for the entire person, is a term that characterizes Jesuit ministry to others. Jesuits, whether in the classroom, parish, mission or many other works, administer individual attention to the needs of others. Cura personalis is also at the core of care provided to Jesuit priests and brothers at the health care facilities in the provinces. Financial support from friends and benefactors allows for care of the physical and spiritual needs of those who have devoted decades of their lives in serving God’s people in numerous venues. Our Lord said, “Where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them” (Mt:18:20). Thus, through their ministry of prayer for the Church and the Society of Jesus, the Jesuits residing in the health care facilities serve as a source of inspiration to their fellow priests and brothers engaged in active ministry. Residents at the Jesuit health care facilities enjoy the companionship of those with whom they have served, while receiving round-the-clock therapeutic services and medical care from doctors, nurses and other specialists. Spiritual direction and counseling from chaplains and other staff enable residents to remain grounded and to grow in their prayer-filled lives. Certainly these needs increase over time as Jesuits live longer. A recent article by Fr. Peter Schineller, SJ, the archivist of the New York Province, noted that the average age of death for Jesuits was 44 in 1839, 55 in 1889 and 65 in 1929. The newest senior community for Jesuits is the Maryland Province’s St. Claude La Colombiére community in Baltimore. It was dedicated and blessed by the Archbishop of Baltimore in September 2011. It supplements the Maryland Province’s Pennsylvania communities at Manresa Hall, Merion Station and the Jesuit Center, Wernersville.