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Tuesday, October 2, 2012

jack morris, s.j

Jack Morris, SJ, the founder of the Jesuit Volunteer Corps, died this week at the age of 84.  Fr. Morris had been living in the infirmary at Gonzaga University writing his memories.  In a post on the National Jesuit Newswebsite, Fr. Morris was described as a man living his life in pursuit of peace.  He wondered how the church could put peace at its center and reflected  “If the church spent as much time on peace issues as it does on birth control and abortion, we could have peace.” 

Fr. Morris helped begin the Jesuit Volunteer Corps in 1956 in Copper Valley, Alaska.  JVC later expanded to JVC East in 1975, JVC Midwest in 1975, JVC Southwest in 1977, JVC South in 1980, and JV International in 1983. 

I am grateful for Fr. Morris' vision and for the JVs he supported that helped develop the organization I was proud to be a part of.  JVC started me on a life long journey of learning about simplicity, social justice, spirituality and community.  Because of Fr. Morris, I was ruined for life.  His prayer summarizes the approach to life JVC instilled in me:  

Mighty God, Father of all,
Compassionate God, Mother of all,
bless every person I have met,
every face I have seen,
every voice I have heard,
especially those most dear;
bless every city, town, and
street that I have known,
bless every sight I have seen,
every sound I have heard,
every object I have touched.
In some mysterious way these
have all fashioned my life;
all that I am,
I have received.
Great God, bless the world.

- Fr. Jack Morris, SJ

Visit the Inside JVC site for a touching reflection on Fr. Morris

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