Freedom is a complex term to define and to explain. Dictionaries define freedom as the the power or the right to act, speak or think as one wants. Philosophers deny that such a thing called freedom exists because by the very fact of choosing something one is restricted by that choice. According to St. Paul, there is no absolute freedom for a follower of Christ – either one is a slave of sin or a servant of God.
Israel was in continuous search for freedom. In search of freedom from the famine, the Israelites go to Egypt; they long for freedom from slavery while in Egypt. As they settle down in the Promised Land, they seek freedom from the traditional tribal governance and move towards a more sophisticated monarchical way of governance. Once under monarchy, they seek freedom from the cruel, tyrant kings. The story continues…..
Their political as well as religious freedom was lost when they were forced into exile. One nation, one land, one king and one Temple became no nation, no land, no king and no Temple. Longing for deliverance from this bondage gave rise to a nationalistic hope of Messiah. Around this time was born Jesus. Misunderstood by many, including his own disciples, as the political Messiah, Jesus trod a different path. He proclaimed freedom from sin and sinful religious structures that had enslaved the poor. As the anointed prophet of God, his mission was “to preach good news to the poor, to proclaim release to the captives and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed” (Luke 4,18).
It is this freedom which St. Ignatius imbibed. For him, freedom is a complete surrender to God’s will. Ignatius let God decide everything and that made him a person of deep discernment, making the words of Jesus his own, “Lord, not my will, but let your will be done.” In fact, the book of the Spiritual Exercises is a very effective tool that makes a person to be interiorly free.
This freedom is paradoxical. It compels us to make choices and take risks in favor of the poor and needy, and yet, this choice does not restrict our freedom. Rather, our freedom is enhanced. This freedom liberates us from our fears and attachments so that we may have the freedom for a full life. This freedom makes us true “servants of Christ’s mission”.
The article is witten by Fr Sunil Ranger SJ
Children from rural villages and urban slums are reached out through rights based and supplementary education programmes
Women empowered from rural sections of our society through Self-Help Groups and various conscientization programmes
Youth are trained and placed through skill training projects every year.
Students in our schools who are given value-based education, and thus equipping them with tools to be better citizens
College students who are preparing themselves to meet the demands of the society by shaping their future through competitive career programmes
WHO ARE TRANSFORMING LIVES
“Companions of Jesus journeying with others towards building a just and humane society.”
“Rooted in Christ and in partnership with people of good will, transforming relationships and structures to build a society based on compassion, justice, reconciliation and service.”
The Society of Jesus is a world-wide organization with Headquarters in Rome where the highest authority called the Superior General resides and guides the world-wide operations of nearly 16,000 Jesuits spread out in about 112 countries. These 16,000 Jesuits are grouped into smaller administrative units corresponding to different geographical locations called "Provinces" presided over by Superiors appointed by the superior General. view more
Strengthening and Expanding our Mission in North Karnataka
Responding to Communalism and Fundamentalism
Imparting Integral Formation to Youth
Training in Collaboration and Leadership