GC36 News Release

GC36 LOGO1CONTACT: Rev. Patrick Mulemi, SJ | Tel: 06 698 68 287 / 289 | Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Jesuits to Hold Worldwide Meeting, Elect New Leader in Rome this October;

On the 36th General Congregation in the 476-year history of the Society of Jesus

Rome: September 27, 2016 —The Society of Jesus (Jesuits), the largest order of priests and brothers in the Roman Catholic Church, will hold the first plenary session of General Congregation 36 in Rome on October 3. The supreme governing body of the Jesuit order, a General Congregation has only happened 35 times since the Society was founded in 1540 by St. Ignatius of Loyola.

At the Jesuit Curia in Rome, the worldwide headquarters of the Society just steps from the Vatican, 215 Jesuits from around the globe will gather to elect a new Superior General, as Superior General Father Adolfo Nicolás, SJ, 80, has announced his intention to resign.

Fr. Nicolás, the 30th Superior General in the history of the Society, has served as leader since 2008, when he was elected at the Jesuits’ 35th General Congregation. Born in Spain, Fr. Nicolás joined the Jesuits in 1953. Before his election as Superior General, he served in Japan and the Philippines, including as provincial (superior) of the Jesuits in Japan and as head of the Jesuit Conference of East Asia and Oceania, where he was responsible for the common works of the region from China to the South Pacific and Australia.

Fr. Nicolás said he believes this Congregation will be different from the previous one because “times have changed and there is a new awareness in the Society that we need daring, imagination and courage in facing our mission as part of the bigger mission of God vis-à-vis our world.”

The men who will gather in Rome to elect his successor represent the global Society of Jesus and come from 62 countries.

The logo for General Congregation 36 includes the words, “rowing into the deep,” a phrase inspired by the exhortation of Pope Francis to the Jesuits in 2014, on the occasion of the 200th anniversary of the restoration of the Society of Jesus. His Holiness encouraged the Society of Jesus to know how to discern in the midst of difficult times, to be submissive and obedient to the will of God, and to “row together in the service of the Church.”

While the first 19 General Congregations in the Society of Jesus were held at the house in Rome where St. Ignatius lived and died, next door to the Church of the Gesù, recent Congregations have been held at the Jesuits’ headquarters at 4 Borgo Santo Spirito in Rome. The proceedings will take place in the complex’s Aula, or hall, newly renovated as part of an extensive project that included wiring and plumbing upgrades, new LED lighting, and fire-retardant measures throughout the headquarters, which dates back to the 1920s.

The Congregation will gather for an Opening Mass on Sunday, October 2 at 17:30 to be celebrated by Fr. Bruno Cadoré, Master of the Dominican Order. The first order of business will be electing the new Superior General. Delegates vote in as many rounds as necessary until someone receives a simple majority.

Once a new Superior General is elected and Pope Francis is informed, the successor to St. Ignatius will be announced. Pope Francis is familiar with the process, as he attended two prior General Congregations — GC 32 (1974-75) and GC 33 (1983). Following the election, a Mass of Thanksgiving will be celebrated at the Church of the Gesù.

After a new Superior General is elected, delegates turn their attention to discussing issues of importance in the Society, including mission, structure and Jesuit life and work. For instance, the 32nd General Congregation in 1974 established “the service of faith and the promotion of justice” as the overriding characteristic of all Jesuit works.

There is no set end date for the Congregation, but when the delegates conclude their work, a closing Mass will be celebrated at the Church of Sant’Ignazio in Rome.

The Society of Jesus is always seeking to find ways to make available the Church’s experience of spirituality, universality, and theological reflection to serve others in the challenging times in which we live.


About the Society of Jesus

Founded in 1540 by Saint Ignatius of Loyola, the Society of Jesus (Jesuits) is the largest order of priests and brothers in the Roman Catholic Church. Jesuit priests and brothers are involved in educational, pastoral and spiritual ministries around the world, practicing a faith that promotes justice. In 1548, the first Jesuit school was founded in Sicily, and today that tradition of forming competent, compassionate and committed leaders in the service of the Church and society continues at Jesuit colleges and pre-secondary and secondary schools. Jesuits minister in parishes and at retreat houses and serve as chaplains at prisons, hospitals, nursing homes and in the military. For more information on the Society of Jesus, visit


Fr. Patrick Mulemi,SJ

Director of Communications and Public Relations

Tel: 06 698 68 287 / 289

Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

News and Events

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3

March 30, 2017

Thursday, Fourth Week of Lent

Thursday, Fourth Week of Lent

March 30, 2017 Ex 32:7-14; Jn 5: 31-47; Ps106: 19-23 By *Fr. Aghadi Onu, SJ Image source: &nbs... Read more

March 29, 2017



"The Word is a gift. Other persons are a gift" Dear Brothers and Sisters, Lent is a new beginning, a path leading to t... Read more

March 28, 2017



Thought of the day, From the Jesuits in Britain 'At the sight of Mary's tears, and those of the Jews who followed her, ... Read more

March 27, 2017

Lenten Reflections 2017

Lenten Reflections 2017

Monday, Fourth Week of Lent March 27, 2017 Is 65: 17-21/ Ps 30: 2 and 4. 5-6. 11-12a and 13b/ Jn 4: 43-54. By *Mr. Lo... Read more

March 20, 2017

St Peter’s Mbare science student creates mobile app

St Peter’s Mbare science student creates mobile app

  A science form four student at St Peter's Secondary School in Mbare has created a mobile application, Paivapo, w... Read more

March 9, 2017

Father General's Speech on Women's Day

Father General's Speech on Women's Day

Voices of Faith 2017 Stirring the Waters – Making the Impossible Possible I would like to thank Voices of Faith and the... Read more

March 8, 2017

Hekima Diaconate Ordination 2017

Hekima Diaconate Ordination 2017

Twenty three (23) Jesuits were ordained deacons on Saturday 25 February, 2017. The event took place at Hekima Jesuit C... Read more

February 9, 2017

News: Arrupe College

News: Arrupe College

Fr. General has appointed Fr. Gibson Munyoro rector of Arrupe College, the Jesuit School of Philosophy and Humanities, i... Read more

February 1, 2017



Very Reverend Fr. General Arturo Sosa has appointed Rev Fr. Agbonkhianmeghe Orobator SJ President of the Conference of M... Read more

Featured Articles

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3

January 21, 2016

Vatican City: Pope Francis speaks out for World Day of Migrants and Refugees

Vatican City, 12 January 2016 – This update originally appeared on the JRS International website. Yesterday, Pope Franc... Read more

January 20, 2016

South Sudan: from Lost Boys to leaders

JRS Eastern Africa Juba, 8 January 2016 In the late 1980's and early 1990's, more than 20,000 boys and girls who fled S... Read more

April 17, 2015

Ongwen’s Surrender and its Implications for Reconciliation in Northern Uganda

By Magara Ibrahim Sakawa- Extract from the Peace Dialogue HIPSIR Since 1989,Northern Uganda has suffered from armed con... Read more

April 13, 2015

Web launching of

Web launching of The Society of Jesus and the right to education for everyone: Madrid (Spain), April... Read more

March 11, 2015

JRS: Ethiopia: Photos from Mai Aini refugee camp

Mai Aini refugee camp in northern Ethiopia is home to more than 18,000 refugees from neighboring Eritrea. (Images from C... Read more

March 11, 2015

Jesuits Martyrs in Africa

Jesuits have a tradition of working in some of the most dangerous places and in Africa they can be very often be found i... Read more

March 11, 2015

Aids in Africa: An overview by AJAN

On 5 June 2011, the world marked an unhappy anniversary: 30 years since the first diagnosed case of what would later bec... Read more

Copyright © 2015 JESAM - Jesuit Superiors Of Africa and Madagascar. All Rights Reserved. Powered By Heartbit