Dear Members of the Prep Community:
Earlier this month, the College of Cardinals elected Jorge Mario Borgiglio, the archbishop of Buenos Aires, as the 266th successor to Peter. In the time since his election, Pope Francis has grabbed the world's attention by his gestures of humility and message of love for the poor. Some would say that the Holy Spirit has been unleashed within us, and the best of ourselves has been enlivened by the message of our new Pope. Some would say we have discovered "new life."
What is it about personal humility and advocacy for the poor that so enlivens us? As Saint Ignatius would say, what are our "holy desires" within this moment? I suspect our new Pope stands for something we all want, and thus hope is welling up from within.
As the Sacred Triduum begins, I would invite all of us to reflect on these two themes in the actions of Jesus in the Last Supper, the Washing of the Feet, the Passion, and the Crucifixion. There is something in the humility and the poverty of Christ that can inform us about our own lives because, as we have seen, we all somehow want it. We desire it.
Is there something here? Is there something about the life of Christ, the lives of his disciples, and our lives that gives us a direction to experience the Resurrection? If Pope Francis has given us a new sense of life through his message, then imagine what the next few days could bring. If we have found hope and inspiration in a man like the Pope, then imagine the life that we can find in Christ.
Humility and advocacy for the poor. Are these the ways we are currently being invited more deeply into an experience the Resurrection? Keep searching, and Happy Easter!
Rev. Robert E. Reiser, S.J.
Father Reiser has been president of Saint Peter's Prep since July 2006. He also taught mathematics and Latin at Prep from 1990 until 1993. In addition, he has served at Canisius High School and McQuaid Jesuit, and as vocation director for the Jesuits on the East Coast.
Fr. Reiser holds advanced degress in philosophy, divinity, theology and education. He also serves on boards of trustees of Jesuit high schools and colleges in the northeast, as is vice chair of the board of the Jesuit Secondary Education Association in Washington, DC.