Jesuit Health Sciences and the Promotion of Justice: An Invitation to a Discussion

Jesuit Health Sciences and the Promotion of Justice: An Invitation to a Discussion

Jesuit Health Sciences and the Promotion of Justice: An Invitation to a Discussion

Jesuit Health Sciences and the Promotion of Justice: An Invitation to a Discussion

Synopsis

Some four hundred years ago, the first Jesuit medical school became operative in France. At present, there are more than 100 health sciences degree programs offered by Jesuit universities worldwide. Ever since the founding of the Society of Jesus, the Jesuits have been concerned with the poor and marginalized. Indeed, this faithful concern for justice is to be a hallmark of all of the Society's missions, including higher education. But what exactly does it mean for a Jesuit medical or dental school, a Jesuit physical therapy degree program or a school of pharmacy to promote justice? This volume, the first ever written on Jesuit health sciences education, takes on this question and invites all faculty, staff and administrators, as well as students and alumni from Jesuit health sciences schools to join in this challenging debate.

Excerpt

The preferential option for the poor is not simply an “option” for Christians. It is an obligation to choose to care for the poor to a greater extent than that found in secular society

Pellegrino & Thomasma Helping and Healing

Ever since the founding of the Society of Jesus by the Basque soldierconvert Ignatius of Loyola in the mid-15th century, the Society has been engaged in social activism, caring for the poor and marginalized, striving to improve their lot through practical care, education and political engagement. a worldwide missionary network as had never existed before was established in a mere century. All of this came to an abrupt end when in the late 18 century, the civil authorities of Spain and France began to expel the Jesuits, culminating in the abolishment of the Society by Pope Clement xiv in 1773. the network collapsed and virtually all of the schools and other missionary institutions were closed. Four decades later, Pope Pius vii realized the error of his predecessor and in 1814 reestablished the Society. But the damage was done; the fire had gone. the Society slowly reemerged but it would be a much more reserved Society, careful not to step on powerful toes.

In 1965 yet another Basque was elected to become the 28th Superior General of the Society. a former medical student, eye witness of the horrors of Hiroshima, Father Arrupe would once again change . . .

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