John English


          For over thirty years the presence and thought of John English has significantly influenced the ministry of the Spiritual Exercises at Loyola House and the Guelph Centre of Spirituality. Beginning in the late 1960s with the individually directed experience of the Spiritual Exercises, his insight evolved to enhance this ministry through incorporating such components as graced history, communal spirituality and prophetic leadership. The development of each successive stage contains and builds on all the previous components.

          The final stage, prophetic leadership, offers a way through which a community as community might experience the spirituality of the Exercises. Challenging culture stereotypes of leadership, this vision embraces the insight that leaders should be attentive to the interior movements of the group as a group.

          In 1997, a committee associated with Loyola House was established to design a format for a symposium which would:

a) identify the evolution of John English's thought as this pertains to the lived experience
    of the Spiritual Exercises and Ignatian spirituality at Loyola House,

b) examine how each stage of this evolution contains and builds on the previous component
    of John's insight,

c) explore the implications of this development for the ministry of the Spiritual Exercises
    as we face the challenge of a new millennium.

          This booklet contains four interviews with John which are to serve as the point of departure for the conversation of the symposium. The first one by Thomas Clancy, SJ on the individually directed retreat was done in 1977 and affords us the luxury of capturing John's thought at that time. The other three were done in 1998 in preparation for the symposium event. Past, present and future implications for each topic will compose the scope of the symposium. These interviews serve as a guarantee that the authentic insight behind each will ground the process.

          Loyola House wishes to thank Dr. Michael Higgins, President of St. Jerome's College at the University of Waterloo, Ontario for editing the initial interviews into the format in which they are presented here. His great effort saved many from redundancy and a lack of clarity.

Table Of Contents

THE DIRECTED RETREAT    John English, sj  in conversation with
                                                     Tom Clancy, sj [October 7, 1977]

GRACED HISTORY                  John English, sj   in conversation with
                                                      Jim Bowler, sj  [November 22, 1998]

THE COMMUNAL                     John English, sj  in conversation with
                                                       Barbara Peloso  [July 30, 1998]

PROPHETIC LEADERSHIP       John English, sj  in conversation with
                                                        Elaine Frigo, CSSF  [October 25, 1998]

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