Learning How to Let Go

How St. Ignatius of Loyola Finally Gave in to the Lord

Learning How to Let Go

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In May of 1521, a captain in the Spanish army was wounded in battle—and the church has never been the same since.

That’s because the captain’s name was Ignatius of Loyola, the proud son of a noble Basque family who went on to found the Jesuit order and write the Spiritual Exercises.

The Fall of a Dashing Knight. The fact that Ignatius was wounded at all owes itself to a large degree to his personality. The battle took place in Pamplona, Spain. Ignatius’ company was defending Pamplona’s fortress against the French army, but his troops were sorely outnumbered. Everyone thought that surrender was the only real option, but Ignatius would not hear it. Despite the odds, he rallied the troops and convinced the other officers to fight. But the French were too numerous, and they broke through the fortress wall. As the wall crumbled, a cannon-ball streaked in and struck Ignatius, shattering his right leg. With their captain downed, saner heads prevailed,…

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