Conference Cycle / Spiritual Exercises and Synodality


The year 2023 marked the 475th anniversary of the approval of the text of the Spiritual Exercises of St Ignatius of Loyola through the Apostolic Letter Pastoralis officii of Pope Paul III on (31 July 1548). The anniversary fell in the middle of the reflection for a Synodal Church, which will conclude with the second session next October. In preparation for this event, the Pontifical Gregorian University is promoting a cycle of four conferences, from 11 April to 16 May, entitled "Spiritual Exercises and Synodality". The cycle aims to reflect on the synodal path of the Church and how the spirituality of the Exercises can shed light on the synodal way of being Church.

"The Society of Jesus has promoted the ministry of the Spiritual Exercises since its beginnings. People from all walks of life, both men and women, have made the Exercises predominantly under the guidance of Jesuits," explains the conference coordinator, Fr Paul Rolphy Pinto S.J. "The method of the Exercises has evolved over the years, according to the Ignatian principle of adapting to 'people, times and places'. The first two sessions of the lecture series will focus on the historical aspect of the ministry of the Exercises. We can thus discern and identify the aspects of the spirituality of the synodal journey that we value so much today in the enduring ministry of the Spiritual Exercises. The third lecture will highlight how aspects of the spirituality of the Exercises were operative in the first session of the Synod on the Synodal Church, while the last lecture will highlight the spirituality of synodality in the Exercises themselves".

Each of the meetings, which will take place on Thursdays from 6.15 p.m. to 7.30 p.m., will be led by a couple of speakers.

  • The first lecture (11 April), offered by professors of spirituality Donna Orsuto and Christopher Michael Staab S.J., will be dedicated to the theme "«Observe, notice and contemplate» (SE 115): St Ignatius, women and the synodal path today'.
  • The second conference (18 April), led by Jesuit historians Martín Morales and Pierre-Antoine Fabre, will address "The complexity of the text of the Spiritual Exercises and its reception".
  • In the third conference (9 May) the voices of two participants in the first session of the Synod, Fr. Adelson Araújo dos Santos S.J. and Sr. María Luisa Berzosa González, will dialogue to identify "Ignatian spirituality in the Synodal Assembly".
  • Finally, the last conference (16 May), in English, will feature Professors Paul Rolphy Pinto S.J. (Director of the Centre for Ignatian Spirituality) and James Hanvey S.J. (Secretary for the Service of Faith, General Curia of the Society of Jesus) on the Ignatian method of discernment and the experience of the Synodal Assembly.

The lecture series is promoted by the Institute of Spirituality and Ignatian Spirituality Centre of the Gregorian University. Participation is free, subject to online registration.

Accreditation Procedure

Journalists and media operators who wish to participate must apply, no less than 24 hours before the event, through the Holy See Press Office online accreditation System available at

  • For interviews and technical information on the event, please contact: [email protected]


  • Sezioni: Ignatian Spirituality Centre PUG