Jesuit Novitiate
Novitiate of the Euro-Mediterranean Province of the Society of Jesus

He does…indeed…make all things new

by Alessandro Di Mauro

‘Behold, I make all things new’ Rev 21:5

It has been almost a year since I began this new journey as a Jesuit novice. When I chose to be a Jesuit I was really very happy, perhaps I had never achieved such happiness, it was 3 June 2021, then so many thoughts, so many desires that resurfaced, so much… fear I would say today. But when you are in desolation, you don’t go back on your choices, you go ahead and wait again for the consolation you felt on the day of your choice. Afterwards there were the interviews with four Jesuit fathers and every time I came out of one of these interviews, joy burst in my heart as a sign that I was going in the most beautiful direction for me.

The fear disappeared when I knocked on the door of the novitiate on 2 October: as I entered, the face of the second-year novice immediately made me feel welcome and at home. The smells, the colours, the objects I saw and touched in the novitiate in the first moments told my heart that I was, at last, at home. Thus began my journey in the novitiate, I got to know my fellow novices and the formation fathers. I begin my apostolate in the parish and then there are the experiments: the month of exercises and the month in hospital. Everything runs but everything is lived with a calmness of heart that helps you savour each moment and stop every day to thank the Lord for the gift of life and yours in particular. During the exercises I experienced my frailties: that I do not love the Lord enough (I will say during a sharing), but that the Lord is there extending his hand to me and that even my small attempt to love him is precious in his eyes and it is his grace that is enough to follow him.

My journey goes on and I experience the difficulty of rethinking my life before this choice and community life: it is quite a challenge. But I never felt alone, never abandoned, the Lord took my doubts, my weaknesses and used them to love me even more to make me live differently: fuller, richer and more joyful. The month I spent in hospital supporting the guests of an RSA was the moment when this love of God was poured out to our brothers and sisters in need, the moment when you really understand that you are, as St Mother Teresa of Calcutta used to say, a pencil in the hands of God. And here we are during the summer period when I am experiencing the beauty of encounter and free service to understand once again that it is the Lord who makes…really…all things new by taking over and enhancing your life.

Alessandro Di Mauro

The summer I would like

What is the summer I would like?

I would like to travel and see new places and meet new people with their lives, desires and dreams. I would also like to always have something new to do so that I don’t get bored, to share part of my holiday with people I know so that we can ‘walk’ together. Of course I would also like not to feel burdened by time in order to be able to pray and meet the Lord.

Well, it would seem impossible to have a summer like that…but no, summer for a novice is really a combination of the things I mentioned. After ten days’ holiday with the brothers of the community, we leave to go to different places in Italy where we will perform services for different realities or for the summer activities of our company. It will be an opportunity to help others in something beautiful and enriching for them and for us. The summer will be varied with meaningful encounters and we will certainly be able to meet the Lord in prayer and in the faces of the people we will meet. We will also experience the summer activities of the groups we have followed during this apostolate year, to walk together. Someone might think but when do you rest? As I always answer: there is always time to rest in the future, now is the time to live fully.

Alessandro Di Mauro

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