Personal Introduction

Welcome! My name is John Roselle, SJ, and I took lifelong ("perpetual") vows of poverty, chastity, and obedience as a Jesuit on August 13th, 2011 after a two-year novitiate. I am now a Jesuit Scholastic for the Wisconsin Province of the Society of Jesus. I will study philosophy and theology for the next three years at Loyola University in Chicago. At the same time, I will do part-time ministry in some capacity with the poor. After that, I will likely teach for three years before finishing three more years of theology. Then, God willing, I will be ordained a Roman Catholic Jesuit priest! It's a long road, but a blessed, fun, and enriching one. This blog exists as a resource for friends, family, and others who are interested in my progress through the Jesuit process of formation. Every day is its own adventure, and I am happy to have you along with me to share in this. This blog contains my own personal thoughts and should not be taken to speak for the entire Society of Jesus. Feel free to contact me. God bless you!

Friday, October 14, 2011

Guest Reflection on Integrity and Courage

This is a reflection on today's Scripture readings by one of my brothers, Dr. Kevin Embach.  Kevin was an internist for 19 years before he entered.  I like to call him "a consummate Catholic physician" because he consistently applied the wisdom of the Church's teachings in his practice of medicine, in order to build "the culture of life."  He is proof to me that one good doctor can be make a huge difference, just as anyone living their lives with integrity and passion can.  Kevin is also one of the most humble, humorous, and generous people I have ever met.  It is a joy to have him in the Society.  This is a picture of Kevin:

Here are his reflections, directed especially to his brothers, but certainly adaptable to people of other vocations.  The Gospel on which they are based can be found at the link below, in case you want to read it beforehand:

Right before I entered the Society, I ran into a family friend whom I hadn't seen for years.  I knew that he had been in the Jesuits but had left at some point and now had a family.  When he asked what I was doing, I told him that I was entering the novitiate.  He then warned me with a real look of seriousness: "Kevin, guard your vocation carefully."

In looking over today’s Gospel, the phrase “Jesus began to speak, first to his disciples…” jumps out at me. While Jesus is addressing all people in the Gospel, in this Gospel, he is first speaking to his own disciples.
As Jesuits, I think we need to pay attention to that phrase. “Jesus began to speak, first to his disciples…”
There are messages that we need to here as Jesuits here:  

Jesus strongly condemns hypocrisy.  He greatly disliked the hypocrisy that he saw in the Pharisees.  Hypocrisy keep us from being out true selves, which is vital to following Christ.

Jesus instructs his disciples to boldly proclaim the gospel.  The Gospel should be proclaimed without fear. Jesus instructs us to not be afraid of what might kill the body, but instead to be fearful of what might kill the soul.  

The evil spirit will likely work against us Jesuits and the mission of Christ in many ways:  The loss of our honesty and authenticity can do serious damage in our ability to carry out the mission of Christ in the world. If we doubt this we need only look at the sex abuse scandal in the Church, where the actions of so very few, has caused so much damage. Other, less egregious, losses of our authenticity and honesty can also do damage.

The evil spirit likely works on us to be less bold, less intentional and less motivated in proclaiming the Gospel and the teachings of the Church.

Fear, does not come from God. The evil spirit will likely try to slow us down with fear—particularly as we are missioned to places and among peoples where we are not popular or where there is significant physical discomfort or danger.

In our daily celebration of the Eucharist, we are enlightened by Scripture and nourished by the Christ’s body and blood to strengthen us in our vocation as Jesuits.

With so many people in our world looking despairingly on Christ’s Church, it is a wonderful time for heroic men to step forward in response to Christ invitation to priesthood and religious life.
With Christ’s help, the amount of good that can be done is infinite.

As Jesuits, let us ask for the grace to joyfully and courageously accept the invitation of Christ to:
Live our vows heroically, with the greatest authenticity, integrity and witness.
To be attentive and open to God’s will in our lives; to be true contemplates in action.
And to boldly and fearlessly proclaim the gospel wherever we are missioned—to a world in great need of Christ’s message.

Let us also ask for the intersession of the Blessed Mother, to help us protect us and our vocations as we attempt to follow Christ in this least Society.

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