“The living experience of the charism brings about in us a spirituality which springs from the mystery of the salvific love of God… This experience of the Spirit, which gives the Society its being, is developed together from the Ignatian spirituality. This is the reason why the theological and spiritual foundations that gives solidity to our spirituality are found in the depending and contemplation of the Heart of Christ as the unifying centre of the whole Gospel, and in the Ignatian spirituality that leads us to live the unifying balance of a life that is interior and committed, prayerful and active.” (Const. Nº 7)
The word "Heart of Jesus" is one of those "source words", fundamental or original. "Heart”, expresses the totality of man and is prior to the philosophical distinction between biological body and incorporeal spirit. "Heart is a real symbol which expresses the most original center of the psychological unity of the person, the intimate center of each being from where openness to God and openness to others is essentially achieved”.
The heart is like the consciousness of the birth of decisions. It is the “I” of the human person, his inner being, his hidden personality, which is in contract with the exterior of the person. In the heart is the place where God puts himself, here is the law printed, the Spirit infused in the heart, in him the Trinity dwells. St. Augustine used to say, for a Christian, the heart represents the source of entire personal life, where thought, love and feelings form a single unit.
St. Ignatius attracts us by the totality of his personality, his way of thinking and feeling, his way of deciding and relating, how he decides and relates, by a manner full of good sense to face different themes. And we ask: How did you reach this way of being? Where does the secret of this harmony lie, of your personality so prolific and well achieved? And above all, which is the role God played in this transformation and growth so human and divine at the same time?
The answer is that your life is like a pilgrimage, of searching and finding, of tenacity and docility and this way you and God achieve a style of life of great Christian quality where, on one side the divine action is made transparent in this world and, on the other, you live in profound plenitude totally dedicated to the service of others.
The Spirit educated Ignatius in the discernment of spirits, in the discernment of Christian maturity in love, a "discerned" love, that is, rooted in God and motivated by Him.
Another important element is to learn to work in the Church without coming into conflict with the structures and without giving in to their freedom as a child of God, which pushes them along very innovative paths. Learning fidelity and freedom that cost Ignacio difficult moments.
The desire to help souls, guides you in the steps you take, it opens up realistically to the "greater" service, which logically demands a certain slowness and integration of aspects and experiences.
Apostolic service is the path of Passion, because there is no other way of living it than by giving your life.
“To contemplate and to experience the love of the heart of Christ means to feel, at the same time, the pressing need “to go to the whole world and preach the Gospel to all men” so that coming to know the truth, they may adhere to Christ and be incorporated in the Church.” (Const. Nº 6)
To live this call of the Lord, demands of us, to leave our known world, to go to meet our poorer and more distant brothers and sisters; in such away, that the vocation Ad Gentes, becomes the constitutive and specific element of our Missionary Charism, which leads us to live universality.
Going out involves risk, fearlessness, audacity, courage, to leap into an emptiness, feeling the fear of the unknown.
It also implies the uprooting of the affective world, place of origin, culture, social and religious environment. Detachment from what one lived, to begin again, with the consequent insecurity of not knowing how it will be nor what awaits us.
The vocation "Ad Gentes" is one of the foundational experiences that touches the affective part, and that shrinks and widens the heart simultaneously, always having the prevailing desire to respond to the call of God, with fidelity. It has such a strength of seduction for us that, even in the midst of fear, it fills the heart with a security so strong and profound that it makes us capable of doing everything.This option for the neediest missions, takes us to live in the social contexts of boundaries among the poorest and excluded.
The vital spirit generated by being in the most remote places and among the poorest is rooted in our vocation. It is the action of the Spirit that transforms the obstacles into potentialities. One that produces inner joy when being able to be among the people, to share their life and to run the same fate, with passionate love for the Kingdom of God that is already present in their midst.