Confessor, founder of the Society of Jesus, born Loyola Castle, Guipuzcoa, Spain, 1491; died Rome, Italy, 1556. He was educated in the atmosphere of the Spanish court of Ferdinand and Isabella, entered the army, 1517, and served in several campaigns. While recuperating from injuries received in battle he came to realize the frivolity of his life, and was inspired with zeal to serve Christ. He retired to Montserrat, and later to Manresa where he lived in austerity and prayer; he wrote his religious experiences and later made them the foundation for the spiritual exercises which he drew up for his Order. In 1523 he set out on a pilgrimage to the Holy Land, but the Franciscans did not permit him to remain there. He returned to Barcelona, and went to Paris, 1528, where he persevered through sickness and poverty until he received his degree in arts and theology. There he became intimate with Peter Faber, Francis Xavier, James Lainez, Alonso Salmerón, Nicholas Bobadilla, and Simón Rodriguez, who united with him in vows of poverty and chastity, and of going on a pilgrimage to the Holy Land. The Turkish war making this journey impossible, the companions offered their services to the pope. Ignatius called his Order the Society of Jesus, and never used the term Jesuit, which was first used in derision by his adversaries. The Society was approved by the pope, 1541, and Ignatius was chosen general. He died of the Roman fever. Patron of retreats. Emblems: a chasuble, communion, a book, apparition of Our Lord. Canonized, 1622. Relics in the Gesu, Rome. Feast, Roman Calendar, 31 July.
- “Saint Ignatius Loyola”. . CatholicSaints.Info. 30 July 2013. Web. 28 March 2015. <>