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Wednesday, August 26, 2015

15 Milliseconds of Fame

Andy Warhol predicted that one day, everyone in the world will be famous for 15 minutes. Whether he was correct remains to be seen but, for my part, I will post my 15 milliseconds of fame!

Last month, I responded to an open Facebook call put out by a local newscaster. She was looking for people to interview on the subject of the Jesuits and Pope Francis, in light of the Holy Father's upcoming visit to the US. She wanted to know what, if any, connections the subject had to the Jesuit religious order, and what their opinion of having a Jesuit pope would be.

The interview itself was conducted on the grounds of the University of Arizona's Newman Center, the Catholic hub of the school. It was pretty straightforward and the newscaster was professionally friendly. For once, I didn't feel intimidated by the fact that I was going to be on camera.

In addition to the link to my interview, I will also embed the article and video accompanying it. If you're anything like me, why waste energy clicking on the link when you can watch and read it already. FYI, I appear at 1:29 in the video.

URL: http://www.tucsonnewsnow.com/story/29875690/jesuits-influence-felt-in-tucson-for-centuries#.Vd0lcRj-Ng8.facebook

Jesuits' influence felt in Tucson for centuries

Posted: Aug 25, 2015 9:57 AM MST Updated: Aug 25, 2015 10:08 AM MST

Tucson News Now

TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) - Many in Tucson have driven down Kino Parkway more than a few times, but most may not know the road is named after one of the most well-known Jesuits.

It is named for Father Eusebio Francisco Kino, a man whose legacy lives on to this day.

"He encapsulated what it meant to be a Jesuit," Brother Guy Consolmagno said.

A statue in Tucson celebrates the intellectual explorer from Europe, who daringly ventured to this part of the world some 300 years ago and founded what is now our historic Mission San Xavier del Bac.

"The Jesuits' particular spirituality is one of the intellectual apostolate, we run a lot of schools, we run a lot of universities, and it's to be engaged in the world," Consolmagno said.

Some of the country's most well-known universities were founded by Jesuits: Georgetown, Gonzaga and Xavier.

Yes, the same Xavier where Sean Miller coached before becoming a Wildcat.
So, how does that translate into what kind of Pope is currently leading the Catholic Church?

Pope Francis is the first Jesuit to become pope.

"Having been a teacher as a Jesuit, he knows how to say the words that will connect to people and remind them what's important," Consolmagno said.
Pope Francis, who is set to visit America in September, has made helping the poor a focus of his work.

"I think it makes the pope a lot more relatable," Tamara Morris said.
Morris said she and her family attend church regularly. She said she found her faith through the on-campus Newman Catholic Center, while attending the University of Arizona.

Tamara especially admires Pope Francis for his commitment to the less-fortunate.

"I'm all for helping the oppressed, the poor, the marginalized," Morris said.

In addition to serving the poor and crusading for higher education, another hallmark of the Jesuits is that they don't seek higher positions of power. Jesuits take a pledge not to become a bishop and move up the ranks of the church leadership. This is one of the things that make Pope Francis so unique.

In 1992, Pope Francis, who was then Father Bergoglio, was named bishop at the insistence of higher-ups. He gained a reputation for his humility, and social justice work, and eventually rose to the head of the church.

"It means that in having a Jesuit, you've got someone who you know wasn't angling to be Pope, he wasn't playing the political game for that, rather, he's just doing it out of love for the church," Consolmagno said.

That dedication is felt by many - all the way from Vatican City to the Old Pueblo.

"Tucson's an old town, and it actually has a history with the Jesuits, too, so it's like, hey, he's one of ours," Morris said.
Copyright 2015 Tucson News Now. All rights reserved.

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