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Jesuits’ Origin and History in the United States Essay


Jesuits refer to the members of the Society of Jesus, a Christian religious order of male representatives serving the Roman Catholic Church. The main purpose of Jesuits it to engage into intellectual research, education, and cultural pursuits. The Society of Jesus was founded by Ignatius of Loyola who compiled the Spiritual Exercises to help the members adhere to the philosophy of the Jesus Christ. The spiritual leader also described the main purpose of Jesuits that consisted in “advancement of souls in Christian life and doctrine and…the propagation of the Faith by the ministry of the Word, spiritual exercises and works of charity” (Hopfl 8). Hence, Jesuits have sophisticated ideology that covered political, legal, moral, and social contexts in which the Society of Jesus has lived.

It is evident that Jesuits originally considered its main work related to level of piety and morality, as well as to the knowledge of doctrine of Catholic people. In the sixteenth century, the society was presented as a community of educated priest who were confident in the right interpretation of the Christian doctrine. Jesuits were imposed by special vows of chastity and responded to the Pope. Therefore, Rome had other tasks for Jesuits than teaching children the main religious underpinnings. Specifically, bishops and popes started engaging members of Society for influencing entire dioceses and performing the role of advisors for papal emissaries. Foreign missions became one of the main activities in which Jesuits were involved although missionary work must also be the duty of the religious adherents.

The history of the Jesuits in the United States is marked by the suppression period that created challenges for the Society of Jesus to proliferate their doctrines. Specifically, in eighteenth century, post-suppression period was followed by the attempt of the Jesuits to protect the property from dissipation, adhering to religious purposing and maintaining the main Order of the Society. The restoration plan derives from the juridical rights implementation relating to canonical equity that determined the order of documents. Although the Jesuits’ community was suppressed in 1773, the Society continued its activities and mission aimed at sustaining Catholic doctrines (Hughes 601). Despite the hardships Jesuits had to overcome, their main principles have been maintained until the present time.

Currently, the activities of Jesuits range from educational missionaries to publishing issues. Specifically, the Society publishes a great number of journals and magazines, highlighting the main ideological and moral underpinnings of their spirituality and orthodox teachings. For instance, in the United States, America takes an important place in Catholic circles. There are also Jesuit colleges producing a range of textbooks, book series, and academic publications. Therefore, the Jesuits’ community can be considered a well-established membership with its strong moral and ethical underpinnings.

In conclusion, Jesuits are followers of orthodox Catholic teaching, forming the memberships of Society of Jesus. Their purposes are confined to intellectual and educational activities that encourage the religious philosophy. Founded in the early sixteenth century by Ignatius of Loyola, the community possesses a number of duties, responsibilities, and codes of ethics and behavior. The Jesuits had a long history of resistance and fight against external political, social, and economic influences. Nevertheless, they have managed to overcome the challenges and create a strong spiritual society issuing its own publications and creating specialized educational establishment in which they prophet the main ideological and religious teachings.

Works Cited

Hopfl, Harro. Jesuit Political Thought: The Society of Jesus and the State, C 1540-1630. UK: Cambridge University Press, 2004. Print.

Hughes, Thomas. History of the Society of Jesus in North America. US: Applewood Books, 2009. Print.

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IvyPanda. (2020, August 21). Jesuits' Origin and History in the United States. Retrieved from https://ivypanda.com/essays/jesuits-origin-and-history-in-the-united-states/

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"Jesuits' Origin and History in the United States." IvyPanda, 21 Aug. 2020, ivypanda.com/essays/jesuits-origin-and-history-in-the-united-states/.

1. IvyPanda. "Jesuits' Origin and History in the United States." August 21, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/jesuits-origin-and-history-in-the-united-states/.


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IvyPanda. "Jesuits' Origin and History in the United States." August 21, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/jesuits-origin-and-history-in-the-united-states/.

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IvyPanda. 2020. "Jesuits' Origin and History in the United States." August 21, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/jesuits-origin-and-history-in-the-united-states/.

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IvyPanda. (2020) 'Jesuits' Origin and History in the United States'. 21 August.

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