The Jesuit Post presents Ignatian preached retreats in podcast form. Each season will feature a series of talks based on the Spiritual Exercises of Saint Ignatius of Loyola presented by young Jesuits. Each episode features a talk that guides you through the dynamics of the retreat, along with reflection questions to aid you on your spiritual journey.
Season 2 is focuses on antiracism, presented through the themes of the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius of Loyola.
Talk 12 - "Laboring with the Resurrected Jesus" | Know Justice, Know Peace: A Jesuit Antiracism Retreat
God never stops laboring for us and for our world, laboring for justice, reconciliation, and the end of racism. We clearly see this in the awakening that has spread throughout the world after the “lynching” of George Floyd. At the end of the Fourth Week of the Spiritual Exercises, St. Ignatius invites us to respond in gratitude to God’s unceasing love for us. In the last talk of our Jesuit Antiracism Retreat, Michael Bachmeier explains how this gratitude manifests in our willingness to surrender ourselves and join the labors of God through the marginalized.
Verses for Prayer:
Matthew 28:16-20 - The Great Commission
How can I be a better ally? Whose voices do I need to listen to? Do I trust the experiences of people from BIPOC communities?
What am I going to do differently after this retreat?
How is God calling me to be a co-laborer in the fight against racism?
Imagine Jesus missioning you from this retreat. Is there something specific Jesus is sending you to do?
Talk 11 - "Eucharist, Hope and Antiracism" | Know Justice, Know Peace: A Jesuit Antiracism Retreat
The Eucharist, which is the source and summit of our faith, completely defies the logic of racism. Like the disciples on the road to Emmaus, Jesus’s breaking of the bread impulses us toward our community with renewed hope and consolation. Peter Bell reflects on letting the Body of Christ renew our antiracist commitment to one another.
Verses for Prayer: Luke 24:13-35 - The Walk to Emmaus
How do I see myself moving from the muck and despair into action?
How might contemplating the Eucharist help me in my antiracist journey?
What do I need to give thanks for over the course of this retreat, what truth have my eyes been opened to?
Do I, like the disciples, need help to see Jesus at work in the world, and if so, how might I seek that help and be open to it?
Talk 10 - "We Are Not Alone" | Know Justice, Know Peace: A Jesuit Antiracism Retreat
Where is the Risen Lord in the racism we’ve been confronting for so long? Jesus conquered sin and death as He rose from the dead. But his wounds were still there when He showed up to his disciples. In the beginning of the fourth week, Eric Couto reminds us that our hope and joy as Christians comes not from naivete, but from our faith that Jesus walks with us, as we transform the painful realities of our world.
Verses for Prayer:
Matthew 28 - The Resurrection of Jesus
What does the message of the Resurrection mean for you?
What gives you hope and consolation about this mission towards antiracism?
Where do you find the Risen Lord consoling you?
Talk 9 - "White Apathy and the Crucifixion" | Know Justice, Know Peace: A Jesuit Antiracism Retreat
Grieving with others is not the only way we commit to solidarity. Becoming aware of one’s participation in the oppression of others, is another way of opening the eyes of the heart and deciding to be responsible. Brian Engelhart, SJ, describes the apathy White people often exercise when dealing with the realities of racism that affect Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC), and finishes the third week of our “Know Justice, Know Peace: A Jesuit Antiracism Retreat” with one contemporary example, as well as with an invitation to get rid of indifference.
Verses for Prayer:
Matthew 26:17-27:56 - The Passion of Jesus According to Matthew
What is the pain Jesus feels at this stage of the Passion?
Am I staying with Jesus in his suffering, or am I looking for ways to escape and reduce my own pain?
What do I feel as I realize that Jesus is suffering on account of my sins?
How does my reaction to Jesus’ Passion compare with my reaction to the sufferings of BIPOC today? Can I recognize that pain, sit with it, and acknowledge my role in it?
Talk 8 - "Lament Must Precede Solidarity" | Know Justice, Know Peace: A Jesuit Antiracism Retreat
Some realities in life can only be known through tears. The participation of Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) members in antiracism is not a hobby or an optional venture: it's a matter of survival. They do not have the luxury that White people have to retire from the conversation of racism and flee from its painful realities. Matt Briand, SJ, invites us to put aside our fear to weep with those who weep because of racism, for true Christian love suffers along the beloved, and commits to justice.
Questions and Verses for Prayer:
Ask God for this grace that St. Ignatius encourages for the Third Week of the Spiritual Exercises: “ask [God] for grief with Christ in grief, anguish with Christ in anguish, tears and interior pain at such great pain which Christ suffered for me.”
Read John 19:16-30 two or three times.
Meditate on the scene by offering your imagination to God. Be patient and let God reveal the scene to you. Engage your senses. Imagine standing with Mary, Mary Magdalene and John. What do you see? What do you hear? What do you feel?
After contemplating the scene, have a conversation with Jesus. Ask him, “Lord, how are you still suffering in the bodies of black people, indigenous people, and other people of color? And how am I to love those in my own community or city and resist the structures and forces that cause them to suffer?”
Talk 7 - "Bear Witness to Suffering" | Know Justice, Know Peace: A Jesuit Antiracism Retreat
Feeling grief for the suffering of others is one of the first steps toward a commitment to serve them. It helps us to have a greater sense of urgency for justice, as well as a deeper understanding of what is at stake. When we accompany those who suffer from racism in their mourning, we walk with our neighbors and bear witness to our Christian vocation. River Simpson, SJ, introduces us to the third week of our “Know Justice, Know Peace: A Jesuit Antiracism Retreat,” and invites us to remain faithfully present to the agonizing Jesus, through our accompaniment of the victims of racism.
How do I handle disappointment, feelings of hopelessness amidst great suffering and specifically as it relates to racism? Where or to whom do I turn for consolation during these moments?
What does it mean to stand in witness to another’s pain, another’s suffering, particularly within the context of racial injustice? Moreover, what does it mean to grieve?
How can I credibly and appropriately lament another’s suffering, perhaps, even my own? What feelings do these reflections rouse in me?
Verses for prayer:
Mark 14:32-42 - The agony of Jesus (The episode says Mark 13, but it is actually Mark 14. Sorry for any confusion.)