Ad maiorem Dei gloriam (To the greater glory of God) is the motto associated with St. Ignatius of Loyola and the religious order that he founded, the Society of Jesus. Semper maior (Always more, always greater) is a pithier version of the adage. Both capture the spirit of Ignatius: restless, moving ever-onward, unsatisfied with the quality of his relationship with the Lord, always convinced that the divine love could be answered by a more expansive fidelity on his part. His passion to become a dashing courtier, a courageous and celebrated soldier, and an advisor to royalty became, under the influence of grace, a passion to serve Christ—all the way, holding nothing back. He effected this influence first through the establishment of the Jesuit order, which even in Ignatius’ lifetime had become a powerful force in Europe and beyond and which today spans the globe; and second, through his masterpiece the Spiritual Exercises, which for the past five centuries has taught people how to commune with God and to find true freedom.
This distinctive Word on Fire Classics collection offers a wide-ranging look at the life and writings of Ignatius of Loyola and those inspired by his Jesuit movement. An introduction by Bishop Robert Barron draws readers into the classic Spiritual Exercises. That’s followed by a collection of poems from Gerard Manley Hopkins, helpfully annotated by Dr. Holly Ordway, and a selection of letters by the great Jesuit missionary St. Francis Xavier, introduced by Bert Ghezzi. The Ignatian Collection is a rich encounter with a pivotal player who changed the world and elevated the Church.