This Doctor of Ministry project attempts to offer a paradigm of Ignatian Retreat imbued with the emerging context of today’s young and weaved together by the spirit of St. Ignatius of Loyola. It is both descriptive and prescriptive.
It is descriptive in that it seeks to describe the youth of today and the critical issues that they are faced with. In a more specific way, the project examines the experiences of the graduating students of Xavier University-Ateneo de Cagayan who have participated in Ignatian retreats by asking them questions which are relevant to their search for identity, relationship with others, sense of purpose in life, and spiritual growth.
It is prescriptive in that it utilizes the richness of the First Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius of Loyola by humbly providing an Ignatian Retreat module that is tailor-fitted to the context of the graduating students of Xavier Ateneo. It is not uncommon to say that the First Spiritual Exercises have been used for centuries by people from all walks of life. Hence, the researcher believes that they continue to hold significance, most especially for today’s youth.
Moreover, the uniqueness of this project’s Ignatian Retreat module lies in its suggestion to facilitate a regulated use of social media in the retreat activities. A fuller appreciation of this strategy, however, can only be had after its implementation. In this day and age of continuous innovation, it is inevitable for campus ministers to constantly explore creative ways of giving the “old wine” – the First Spiritual Exercises – in a language that can be understood by young people, the “new wineskins”, without sacrificing the original message they intend to give.
The researcher hopes that the findings of this study can help inform the development of Ignatian Retreat programs for graduating students that are tailored to their unique needs and interests.