The second day of the X Jesuit Alumni Congress is coming to an end. A day full of conferences and moments that have served the participants to reflect on the role of an alumni of the Society of Jesus in the world.
The morning began, after the Eucharist, with a speech by Albert Florensa, emeritus professor at the Ramón Llull University of Barcelona, philosopher and technical engineer. Florensa reflected on the role of technology in our lives and that it is very difficult for us to separate ourselves from technology. “Technical progress often poses more difficult problems than it solves,” he warned. It was also an invitation to think of technology as a problem solver with the least possible impact.
Fr. Laurent Basanese, SJ, Holy See Officer for Islam and Professor of Theology of Religions at the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome encouraged us to see the transforming and reconciling potential of religions in the 21st century. As Christians, the Jesuit considered, we are called not only to respect others in their traditions and beliefs, but also to meet them as equals, promoting a culture of dialogue.
Lisa Hederberger, a professor at the ESADE Business School, placed her talk within the framework of the need to make investments that have an impact on people’s lives. The social economy today needs new leadership to help create a fairer society.
The Secretary of Education of the Society of Jesus, José Alberto Mesa, SJ, spoke to the participants about the great educational network around the world that the Jesuits maintain. More than 2000 schools between their own and educational networks such as Fe y Alegría or the Jesuit Refugee Service. “Jesuit schools do not have to be a museum of education, but a place where we respond in new ways,” he said. And encouraged to launch the full potential of the educational network.
Chris Loweney, the last of the day’s speakers, spoke precisely in this line of exploiting the potential of the global educational network of the Society of Jesus. He helped the congressmen to reflect on the different situations that exist in schools around the world, where some have a more privileged position, while others have greater difficulties: “If some were more aware of the difficulties of others, it would not cost them nothing to help solve their problems,” he said. And he added: Will the sleeping giant wake up? Imagine the capacity that the WUJA would have if we could mobilize a small percentage of the 10 million alumni around the world.”
With these ideas in their hearts and minds, the attendees were able to divide again for the reflection and sharing workshops. They were also able to enjoy an afternoon walking around the city and learning about the different projects of the Society of Jesus in Barcelona.
All the photos of the meeting in this link.