Before I began to receive the splendid Jesuit education I have been going through these past nine semesters, all I knew about the Society I learned from the Exorcist.
Over the years I've come to appreciate their particular style, even though it's a little different from ours. The selection from John de Brebeuf's spiritual diaries from today's Office of Readings really brings out what I love about the Jesuits:
I bind myself in this way so that for the rest of my life I will have neither permission nor freedom to refuse opportunities of dying and shedding my blood for you, unless at a particular juncture I should consider it more suitable for your glory to act otherwise at that time.
Isn't that something? He aspires to the grace of martyrdom (and we celebrate just that today) but he puts a caveat in his prayer, knowing that what he really desires is the greater glory of God. John knows that he will always have to discern how to adjust his spiritual ambition to circumstances. He doesn't know whether or not the greater glory of God will demand something else, but he wants to be open to it.