In the second year of our formation in the novitiate we have the so-called “Lenten experience”. During the forty days of Lent each novice lives in an apostolic community and experiences the apostolate typical of the community in which he finds himself.
I had the opportunity to do this experience at the “Martyrs of El Salvador” Community in Turin. A very lively community, as they call themselves, made up of six fathers and a scholastic, who carry out different apostolates in Turin and the Piemonte region.
This experience has enriched me first of all by living and getting to know the members of this community, their way of being together, praying and sharing their pastoral experience and the way in which each of them gives the best of themselves to the community.
My apostolic experience was directed towards the “Istituto Sociale”, a school in Turin, and the first Jesuit school I have met. I also took part at the Ignatian youth and adult groups and CLC communities in Chieri. They are some very beautiful realities that live a deep experience of Ignatian spirituality, in the style of the Society of Jesus. They offered me a model of collaboration between lay people and Jesuits, and of participation in the one mission of Jesus: to bring the fruit of his vineyard to all people (Jn 15:1-11).
In particular, my experience at the “Istituto Sociale”, opened up a new perspective on what the Society of Jesus, together with its lay people collaborators, does in the world: accompanying young people, contributing to their formation, offering them academic, educational and even spiritual services.
If you want to see a little more of this experience and what my encounter with the Jesuit school was like, I invite you to view the following video:
2021-04-14 Raul Petru Ciocani, second year novice