Australian Tertianship 2023

Under the guidance of Tertian Director, Fr Steve Curtin SJ, eleven Jesuits have arrived into Australia at the start of the year to undergo their final period of formal training before taking final vows.


For Jesuits, Tertianship is the third (tertiary) and final period of formal training before taking final vows. After many years of intellectual formation and some years of full-time work, Jesuits in Tertianship are given time to revisit Jesuit sources: the life of St Ignatius, his Spiritual Exercises, the foundations of the Society of Jesus, the Jesuit Constitutions and Jesuit history. Tertians take time to recall the origins of their vocation in their relationship with God and they take time to reflect on their experience of living the consecrated life and their experience of ministry in the Church. There is time to rest, pray and reflect before God on how they are travelling personally. The tertians share their reflections with one another and receive spiritual direction from one of the Tertian Directors. The Australian Tertianship program is one of about 20 similar programs that run in different parts of the world in various languages.

Here is the latest batch of tertians that will be spending time in Australia this year:


Nono Alfonso

“Nono” in the Philippines means the youngest. And although in this batch, I am one of the oldest, I feel in the spiritual life, I am just a toddler. I entered the Society in 1997, got ordained in 2008 and was assigned to the communications ministry for the last 14 years. I write, sing, dance, play basketball and watch horror films. I am a homebody, an introvert (although no one believes that!), and a digital illiterate (yup, despite being in the comms business). I have an 8-year-old husky back home who is a therapy dog at the University and has certainly been the reason for my sanity these past years. My sole objective in this respite down under, aside from revving up my relationship with the one that called me, is to sleep, sleep, sleep.


Thang Bui

I am Bui Ngoc Thang, Vietnamese, a missionary in Taiwan and applied to the Chinese province. I entered the novitiate on Sept 9th 1997, Thu Duc, Vietnam and had a basic formation in Taiwan. After my priesthood ordination in Vietnam,  I was sent to Taiwan as Parish Priest of Sacred Heart, Director of Tien Center and Minister of Jesuit Community and some positions in Taipei Diocese (2014-2022). I am grateful to the Chinese Province for giving me an opportunity to let go of all my works to finish the Jesuit basic formation and thankful to the Australian province for accepting me to do tertianship (the school of heart) in Melbourne, Australia. I am very excited and looking forward to the tertianship life and experience and experiments with the companionship of my best Friend, our Lord Jesus Christ. May our beloved Mother Mary be with me always.


Francisco Javier Diaz Diaz

I was born and raised in Costa Rica but entered the Society of Jesus in the USA. I studied medicine in Costa Rica before joining the Society and was missioned to complete postgraduate studies in Family Medicine in Texas as part of my regency.  I was able to have some training in Restorative Reproductive Medicine and it is my joy to help Catholic married couples achieve a pregnancy through morally sound means when they struggle. I was ordained a priest in 2016, and I have been serving as a priest-physician since 2017 in a free clinic in Oakland, California  and as Vicar in the Cathedral Parish within the block of the clinic.  I was 14 years old when the Scout Movement enabled me to visit Australia for the World Jamboree.  I am grateful to be back in Australia 35 years later for Tertianship, in a constant search to go deeper in my encounter with the Lord and the mission He has entrusted to the Society.


Pat Douglas

I grew up in Omaha, Nebraska (USA). I went to college at the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minnesota. Before entering the Jesuits I received a degree in social work and worked as a licensed social worker for five years, facilitating group therapy for victims and perpetrators of domestic violence. In the Society I have recently finished ten years on our vocations team. I am also a powerlifting coach at our Jesuit high school in Nebraska. I enjoy exercise, reading and being outdoors. I look forward to learning more about Australia and learning from Australian Jesuits.


Joseph Haw

Hello, please call me Jhaw (like Ciao! But with a J). I was ordained in April 2010. I served in the prison ministry for two years and another 7 years in the basic education ministry. I’ve stayed in Hong Kong for three years as a graduate student before coming over to Australia for Tertianship. I enjoy going out for a hike or walk and I like doing it best with a group. I am a fan of anime and Korean historical fiction TV series. I love cooking and experimenting on food. It excites me especially when I have to use leftovers or whatever ingredients I find  in the refrigerator. In this Tertianship, I am looking forward to deepening my relationship with Jesus and with this least Society some more.


Tony Lusvardi

I grew up in Minneapolis, Minnesota (USA).  Before entering the Society, I studied literature and philosophy at the University of Notre Dame (Indiana) and spent two years teaching English for the US Peace Corps in Kazakhstan.  My most important pastoral experience in formation was administering three small parishes on the Rosebud Indian Reservation in South Dakota during regency.  For the past six years, I have been completing first my license and then doctorate in sacramental theology at Sant’Anselmo in Rome, and I’ve just begun teaching sacramental theology at the Gregorian.  I’m grateful to have arrived in Australia (at last!) and for the welcome I have received.


Juan Pablo (JP) Marrufo Del Toro

I come from the USA West province. I met the Jesuits at the Jesuit University of Guadalajara, where I graduated in 2001. I joined the Jesuits in 2003, I got an M.A. in philosophy in 2009 from Loyola University Chicago, did regency as a teacher and campus minister at Seattle Preparatory school and I was a research assistant at the Vatican Observatory in Castel Gandolfo. I also completed an STL from the Jesuit school of theology at Berkeley and an M.Ed from the University of San Francisco. I was ordained a priest in 2015 and assigned to Brophy College Preparatory in Phoenix, Arizona, where I have been the school chaplain while teaching astronomy, coaching the mountain biking team, the rowing team and doing campus ministry. I also have a pilot’s license and I love the outdoors. I feel a deep passion for our education apostolate and for scientific research. I am always up for a new adventure and I love to explore the world and to meet people. Do not forget to look up and to smile. God is already smiling at us!


Jaroslav Mikuczewski (Jarek)

I was born and raised in Wroclaw, a South-West city in Poland. After graduating in biotechnology and protein engineering at Univ. of Wroclaw, I joined the Jesuits. After my philosophy study I did my regency with JRS Malta. After that, I completed theology study at the Pontifical Univ. in Warsaw. During my theology study, I directed retreats and sessions on Ignatian Spirituality for various groups. I was ordained in 2016 and missioned to work as an editor for Catholic websites in Poland, Deon. pl. In 2018 I came to St. Louis to start my Ph.D. program in Health Care Ethics at SLU and I finished it in May 2022. Prior to arriving for my tertianship, I completed a post-doctorate fellowship at Georgetown University in Washington, DC. I’m looking forward to studying at the “school of heart.” AMDG.


Michael Ochwo

A Ugandan, a member of the Eastern Africa Province of the Society of Jesus. After my ordination to the Priesthood on 15th July 2017, I was missioned to Loyola High School- Dar es salaam, Tanzania, where I taught biology, was Academic dean (2017-2018,2020 Jan) and later Acting Headmaster and Chaplain (2019). In 2020 I was sent to Loyola Jesuit Secondary School Kasungu , Malawi, where I taught chemistry and served as a School Chaplain until 2022 November. While in both countries, I ministered in three parishes and did chaplaincy work in other schools. I am passionate about science education and ecology. I am grateful to the Australian Province and the East African Province for making it possible for me to experience Tertianship in this hospitable and beautiful country.


Agustinus Tanudjaja  (Agus)

Grateful to be here in the Australian Tertianship 2023. My name is Agustinus Tanudjaja. Born in Jakarta (Indonesia) and became Singaporean in 1999. I entered the Society of Jesus in Malaysia-Singapore region (MAS) in 2001 and was ordained in 2012. My first assignment was the assistant parish priest of St. Ignatius Church (Singapore). Then, I became the director of Kingsmead Centre for Ignatian Spirituality and Counseling. Before coming here, I was assigned as the local superior of Kingsmead Hall Jesuit community in Singapore. I look forward to experiencing God in Down Under. Thank you for your hospitality.


Titus Tin Maung

I am Titus from Myanmar Region of the Society of Jesus, dependent on the Philippine Province. I joined the Jesuit Novitiate in 2000 some years after my high school. I did most of my formation in Manila, staying at Arrupe International Residence. I spent a total of 9 years there doing my Juniorate program, Philosophy, and Theology. I was ordained in 2014. After 6 months of pastoral ministry at a rural parish, I was assigned as director of Jesuit candidates and vocation promotion in Taunggyi until 2018. Ever since I finished my studies in Ignatian Spirituality at Jesuit College of Spirituality in Melbourne in 2020, I was assigned as socius to the novice master at our Novitiate  and as director of Ignatian retreat center in Taunggyi. Myanmar is my first home, Manila was my second, and Melbourne came as the third. Having been a Jesuit priest for 9 years, it feels quite timely to be back to the school of heart. It is indeed another homecoming to my third home. Thanks to the Australian Province of the Society of Jesus for all the nourishments, physical or spiritual, past or present.


The eleven Tertians enjoy a visit to Erskine Falls near Lorne, VIC.

Tertian Director, Fr Steve Curtin SJ (back row, 4th from left), Fr Brian McCoy SJ (front row, 1st from right) and the eleven Tertians meeting with Fr Hans Zollner SJ (back row, 5th from left) on his recent trip to Melbourne.