Wisdom from the pulpit

Brief excerpts from the series of homilies and addresses that
Fr General Arturo Sosa gave in Sydney, Melbourne and Adelaide.


All photos: David McMahon, Communications Manager, Society of Jesus in Australia

Sydney, 27 January 
Saint Ignatius’ College, Riverview

“Jesus teaches with integrity, with consistency, with wholeness, with a coherence between speech and action and thought. There is no double life. There is no hypocrisy. There is no sinister agenda. His very life, his very being, his every word and work and action, is a message, a challenge to all, and for the humble who open the eyes of their hearts, a source of hope and strength.”


“The freer we are from the shackles of our egos, the more we are able to assume this mission to be prophets in our time. The freer we are, the more we are able to become truly women and men for others.”


“Today’s second reading, a passage from the letter of Paul to the Corinthians, is not so much about being married or unmarried. Rather, as Paul says, it is about being free from worry, from unnecessary concerns. In today’s world, it is also a call to freedom – from secularism, from fake news, from false ideologies, from the politics of exclusion, from a desire to dominate, from all sorts of distraction from anything and everything that restrains us, that limits us from giving of ourselves to the service of all.”

Melbourne, 29 January
Xavier College, Kew

“No doubt, the power of evil is great and frightening. But we also witness how the power of God is far greater.”


“Ours is not a god who waves a magic wand to make all problems disappear, but one who accompanies wounded humanity with tenderness and mercy. As St. Paul says, ‘… neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor rulers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord’.”


“When human lives are at stake, it is true that we cannot just sit and do nothing. We must speak up and denounce (these acts). We must get together and find ways of working for change and conversion. And I am confident that you are doing what you can. But we must also never forget to turn back to the Lord and ask for the grace of sharing in his true power – the power of compassion that compels towards action.”

Adelaide, 31 January
St Ignatius’ Church, Norwood

“I come to this Mass with a strong sense of thanksgiving. The experiences of Australia, in Sydney, Melbourne, and Sevenhill have shown me the wonderful and good works of so many of you – in education, in retreat work, in parishes, in the outreach to the marginalised. It is through all this that the Good News of Our Lord is shared, and this gives me renewed hope and energy.”


“The folks in Nazareth refused to believe in Jesus’s teaching because they considered him one of themselves and therefore without authority to tell them about how to live their lives with meaning. (This was a) hierarchical mindset, where those on top in society remain on top, and it is they, and only they, whom those below recognise and follow. Jesus had no proper credentials, no priestly authority, no PhD. They put Jesus in a box labelled ‘carpenter’, and they could not think of him as anything else.”


“Jesus heals on the Sabbath, not because he does not respect Jewish law, but because he focuses on more fundamental values that favour human life and dignity. He exposes the hypocrisy and the rigidity of the Scribes and Pharisees. Jesus speaks prophetically, denouncing what is shallow and inflexible, and announcing the boundless compassion and mercy of God, and it is this prophetic lifestyle that brought him to the cross.”

Fr General’s viewpoint on vocations

“A word on the promotion of Jesuit vocations. I am confident that the Lord is still calling the Society to serve the Church and bring the Good News of Jesus Christ to people. The call is therefore to help in spotting men with hearts of service to others, whom the Lord may be calling to religious life, and to create spaces and opportunities for them to imagine and experience what Jesuit life is like.”

Fr General, flanked by Fr Jose Magadia SJ (left) and Fr Andy Nguyen SJ, applauds the closing words from Fr Chris Jenkins, Norwood parish priest, who said, “We’ve been here (in Norwood) for almost 160 years and we hope to be here in the next 160 years, of course. That would depend on you, so please send your sons and grandsons to the Society.”

To enquire about becoming a Jesuit in Australia, contact vocations@sjasl.org.au and for more info, visit our Vocations page.