St. Ignatius of Loyola
July 31, 2023
An event every year that begins at 12:00 am on day 31 of July, repeating indefinitely
Born at Loyola in the Spanish Basque country in 1491, St. Ignatius was of a somewhat fiery and warlike nature so that it was not surprising that he adopted a military career; on being wounded in the leg at the siege of Pampeluna he was obliged to undergo a long convalescence during which the grace of God transformed his whole life. Being without the tales of chivalry which formed his favorite reading, he turned to religious books and in the lives of Christ and the saints discovered a very different outlook which showed him that the Church also should have her army. He set out for the Benedictine abbey of Montserrat, laid his sword at the feet of our Lady and desired henceforth to serve only Christ. A few years later, on August 15, 1534, St. Ignatius and his six first companions took their religious vows in Paris, at St. Denis’s chapel on Montmartre; this was the beginning of the Society of Jesus which was to become for the Church a source of powerful assistance in her struggle against heresy and in her continual effort to spread the faith to the ends of the world. St. Ignatius died in Rome on July 31, 1556. Pius XI named him patron of all those who perform the spiritual exercises.