MESSAGE FROM THE PRESIDENT
Arrupe Jesuit College (AJC) is part of the network of schools belonging to the Society of Jesus, a religious order of men in the Roman Catholic Church. It was founded through the benefaction of the Austin Avuru Foundation to the North-West African Province of the Society of Jesus. Arrupe Jesuit College poised to provide good and quality education characteristic of Jesuit education to young men and women, thus will enable the pursuit and realisation of countless numbers of dreams for a bright future.
As we have officially commenced intense preparations in various ways: infrastructural development, launching of the admission portal and staff recruitment (to follow soon) in order to adequately open our doors for the pioneer class (JS1 admission for 2023/2024 academic year) in the Jesuit way of proceeding, we are filled with peace and joy that another Jesuit school in Nigeria has become a reality. And soonest, speaking in Jesuit parlance the “Arrupe Effect” which characterises our mission and vision will begin to radiate in the lives of our students, collaborators, parents and even in the socio-cultural heritage of our people. As such we welcome everyone that values justice and peace, equity and fairness in our world to collaborate with us in “forming men and women for and with others”!
Fr. Asogwa C. Emeka, SJ
President, Arrupe Jesuit college
Arrupe Jesuit College, a non-profit co-educational boarding Catholic and Jesuit secondary school, welcomes young men and women of diverse cultural and religious backgrounds and provides them with a comprehensive education and formation to lead meaningful lives with and for others, and to work for the good of God’s creation through the service of love and justice..
As a Catholic Jesuit secondary school, Arrupe Jesuit College will strive to develop authentic, self-aware young men and women of conscience, competence, compassion, and commitment, who possess a deep sense of human excellence and responsibility that go beyond themselves.
As a Catholic school, the mission of Arrupe Jesuit College is guided by the sound doctrine and teaching of the Catholic Church. The College is part of the apostolic mission of the Church in building the Kingdom of God. Our educational principles which are in conformity with the Catechism of the Catholic Church help students become fully human and fully alive affirming Jesus Christ as the source of abundant life. (cf. John 10:10) Our Catholic identity is accentuated by the diverse cultural and religious backgrounds of our staff and students. Given her identity, Arrupe promotes the “culture of relationships” that helps students nurture their relationship with God, self, others, the local and world communities, and creation.
Objectives of Arrupe Jesuit College
- To provide young men and women of diverse cultural and religious backgrounds with education of the highest quality in the Jesuit tradition.
- To deepen the personal faith of our students through the provision of pastoral care and the celebration of communal prayer and worship.
- To instil in our students strong religious, moral, and national values that will enable them to lead meaningful and productive lives for God and humankind.
- To provide excellent education and formation to indigent young men and women through active collaboration with individuals and organisations who manifest particular concern for the poor.
- To provide personal care to students so that their growth might be holistic and sound.
- To foster in students a deep love for learning for active and fruitful life commitment.
- To develop in young men and women a deep appreciation of truth, goodness, and beauty that they might adequately care for God’s creation and make the world a better place.
- To prepare young men and women of conscience, competence, compassion, and commitment who will be effective in solving the problems bedevilling humanity.
- To develop students with a deep sense of responsibility that goes beyond themselves.
- To help young men and women attain their full potential and be the best versions of themselves.
- To foster in students the attitude of solidarity and disposition to service for a just society.
- To promote the “culture of relationships” and a spirit of community among administrators, the collaborators, parents, students, former students, benefactors, and benefactresses.
Jesuit education is holistic. To educate the young ones in the Jesuit tradition goes beyond the four walls of the classroom; it focuses on the care of the whole person (Cura personalis). In the footsteps of Ignatius of Loyola, Pedro Arrupe, a formal Superior General of the Society of Jesus (1965–1983), said “the principal objective of Jesuit education is to form men and women for others, men and women who will not live for themselves but for God.” And as such, it emphasizes formation in values, in attitudes, in character formation, and in an ability to evaluate criteria. In other words, it is value-oriented and encourages a realistic knowledge, love, and acceptance of self.
St. Ignatius of Loyola, wrote in the Constitutions of the Society of Jesus that the aim of Jesuit schools is “improvement in living and learning for the greater glory of God and the common good.” Jesuit education prepares students for a life of service to the poor and humanity following the command of Christ, and it encourages mutual respect and promotes human dignity. As a college community, human excellence is modeled on the 4Cs (Competence, Conscience, Compassion, and Commitment) as the foundation and background of Jesuit education.
Arrupe Jesuit College has its roots in the age-old tradition of Jesuit education whose fundamental aim is the formation of principled, value-oriented men and women for others after the example of Jesus Christ. Inspired by Jesuit value of seeking the divine in all things – in all peoples and cultures, in all areas of study and learning and in every human experience, teaching and learning at Arrupe serve as means of helping students know God better and respond to his call to promote human excellence. Our belief that each person is a child of God and that the universe is his handiwork propels us to provide personal care (Cura Personalis) to members of the College community, and encourages us to instil in them a deep sense of their stewardship of creation. In keeping with the Jesuit profound commitment to issues of social responsibility and justice, our school culture promotes a deep sense of justice in the formation of staff and students.
Arrupe Jesuit College is named after Father Pedro Arrupe, S.J. (14 November 1907 – 5 February 1991), a Spanish Basque Jesuit priest who served as the 28th Superior General of the Society of Jesus from 1965 to 1983. Arrupe entered the Society of Jesus in 1927 and was ordained in 1936. He then went to Japan as a missionary. He was master of novices at the Jesuit novitiate in Hiroshima in 1945 when the United States dropped the atomic bomb, almost entirely destroying the city. Confronted by the immense health disaster occasioned by the bombing, Arrupe who had been a medical student before joining the Society, converted the novitiate into a makeshift hospital. His life and world view were profoundly affected by the experience.
In 1958, Father Arrupe was appointed Provincial of the Japanese Province, then in 1965, General Congregation 31 (GC 31) elected him Superior General. As Superior General, Arrupe encouraged his brother Jesuits and collaborators in ministry to heed the call of the Second Vatican Council to return to the Society’s roots and to follow the “preferential option for the poor”. One of his most famous initiatives was the founding of Jesuit Refugee Service (JRS) in 1980 to meet the humanitarian and educational needs of refugees around the world.
Father Arrupe suffered a cerebral stroke on August 7, 1981 on a flight from Bangkok to Rome. In 1983, he was wheeled into the opening session of General Congregation 33 (GC 33) to which he submitted his resignation. At the occasion, Arrupe shared the following insightful remarks with members of the Congregation:
“More than ever I find myself in the hands of God. This is what I have wanted all my life from my youth. But now there is a difference; the initiative is entirely with God. It is indeed a profound spiritual experience to know and feel myself so totally in God’s hands.”
Father Arrupe died on February 5, 1991 aged 83. His funeral was held in the Jesuit Church in Rome: Church of the Gesù, and was attended by a large crowd among whom were the Prime Minister of Italy, Giulio Andreotti, as well as other religious and civil dignitaries.
On July 11, 2018, the Superior General of the Society of Jesus, Father Arturo Sosa, S.J., announced the beginning of the process for his beatification.
The motto of Arrupe Jesuit College, “Men and Women for and with Others,” is a coinage of Father Pedro Arrupe. The phrase is contained in his landmark address to the “Tenth International Congress of Jesuit Alumni of Europe,” in Valencia, Spain, on July 31, 1973. Below is an excerpt of his address:
“Today our prime educational objective must be to form men-and-women-for-others; men and women who will live not for themselves but for God and his Christ – for the God-man who lived and died for all the world; men and women who cannot even conceive of love of God which does not include love for the least of their neighbours; men and women completely convinced that love of God which does not issue in justice for others is a farce.”
Inspired by the vision of Jesuit Education advanced by Father Arrupe, Arrupe Jesuit College views education as preparation for service rooted in justice and love, and strives to form young men and women with social consciousness and a deep sense of responsibility that goes beyond themselves.
Arrupe Jesuit College logo is comprised of a vest on which is engraved the following images: the IHS monogram adorned with a cross and three nails, a square with four equal compartments bearing the following images: patches of green vegetation and water body, the coat of arm of the Loyola family, an oil rig, and an eagle
Below the square is inscribed the year 2023 – the year the College was founded. The school motto Men and Women for and with Others, a coinage of Pedro Arrupe, (the Jesuit after whom the College is named) is inscribed on a scroll underneath the year of foundation. Lastly, the vest and scroll are encircled by a band on which is displayed the name of the College “Arrupe Jesuit College, Abbi.
SYMBOLISMS OF THE IMAGES CONTAINED IN THE LOGO.
The vest is symbolic of the values with which Arrupe adorns her students for life. Elements of these values are captured by the images engraved on the vest, thus:
The IHS refers to the first three letters of Jesus’ name in Greek. The monogram was adopted by the Society of Jesus (the Jesuit Order) as its fixed emblem. The cross above the letter H refers to the salvation of the world accomplished by Christ through his passion depicted by the nail underneath each letter of the monogram. Together these symbols located at the crest of the vest portray Christ as the model of human life proposed by Jesuit Education which Arrupe strives to provide.
The square, a geometrical shape with four equal sides, refers to the 4 ‘Cs’ of Jesuit Education: conscience, competence, compassion, and commitment which Arrupe fosters in students.
The four compartments refer to the four corners of the world and delineates the holistic nature and global orientation of education and formation which students enjoy at Arrupe.
The patches of green vegetation and water body refer to the productivity of the Abbi people and symbolise the life of productiveness for which Arrupe prepares her students.
The coat of arm of the Loyola family, which depicts two wolves grasping a suspended cauldron; an imagery symbolic of the generosity of the family of the founder of the Jesuit Order – St. Ignatius of Loyola – refers to the Ignatian spirit of generosity that permeates Arrupe, and which she strives to inculcate in her students.
The oil rig, an imagery that delineates the richness of Abbi with regards to natural resources refers to the enrichment of life with which Arrupe endows every member of the College community.
The Eagle as a bird associated with the qualities of intuition, tenacity, sharpness of sight, swiftness in movement and sensitivity, refers to the school mascot and portrays attitudes that allow for accompaniment which Arrupe promotes.
ST. IGNATIUS OF LOYOLA
Arrupe Jesuit College is founded on the Spirituality of St. Ignatius of Loyola. The Ignatian spirituality is encapsulated in the Spiritual Exercises, a work of Ignatius informed by his experience of spiritual conversion. The Exercises are a series of meditations and contemplations that deepen awareness of God’s presence in creation and inspire relationship with Him whose outcome is service aimed at the greater glory of God. Below is a synopsis of the life of Ignatius of Loyola venerated as Saint Ignatius of Loyola.
Ignatius was born in 1491 at Loyola in Guipúzcoa, the Basque region of Northern Spain. After spending time as a courtier, he turned to a military career. In May 1521, a cannonball shattered his right leg at the battle of Pamplona after which he underwent a long and very painful convalescence at his family castle. During his recovery, he began his conversion from the life of a worldly courtier to that of pilgrim and missionary for Christ.
After an abortive pilgrimage to Jerusalem where he wanted to spend the rest of his life, he returned to Spain. Already thirty years old, he decided to return to school so that he could obtain the training he needed to “to help souls,” by means of loving and generous service. Ignatius studied Latin in grammar school for two years. He then went on for studies in Alcalà before proceeding to Paris for studies in philosophy and theology. In Paris, where he spent seven years, (1527-1535), Ignatius gathered around himself an international group of six companions with whom he would later found the Society of Jesus in 1540.
Ignatius was elected the first Superior General of the Society by his companions and held the office until his death in Rome, Italy on July 31, 1556 at the age of 65. He was beatified by Pope Paul V in 1609 and declared a saint by Pope Gregory XV in 1622. His feast day is July 31.
SOCIETY OF JESUS AND THE EDUCATION APOSTOLATE
Formally founded by the bull, “Regimini Militantis Ecclesiae,” of Pope Paul III on September 27, 1540, the Society of Jesus is the largest religious order of men in the Catholic Church. The order is the brainchild of Ignatius of Loyola and his first companions: Francis Xavier, Peter Faber, Alfonso Salmeron, Diego Laynez, Nicholas Bobadilla, and Simão Rodrigues. Founded chiefly to strive especially “for the defense and propagation of the Catholic faith and for the progress of souls in Christian life and doctrine, by means of public preaching, lectures, and any other ministration whatsoever of the word of God, and further by means of the Spiritual Exercises, the education of children and unlettered persons in Christianity,” the Society of Jesus enjoyed an unusually rapid growth within a few years of the its founding such that by 1554, two years before the death of Ignatius, it numbered approximately 1, 500 members who were reputed as pedagogues.
In 1547, Ignatius received an utterly unexpected and unsolicited invitation from leading citizens of the city of Messina in Sicily to found and staff a secondary school for their sons who were not members of the Society. He accepted the invitation and the school which opened in 1548 was a huge success. Given the success of the first Jesuit school, many offers of school were made to the Society and by the time Ignatius died in 1556, the Society was operating some thirty secondary schools, practically all of them for young men.
The Society’s involvement in education and the increasing offer of schools which it received, prompted Ignatius to make education the primary ministry of the Society. Consequently, in writing the Constitutions of the Society, Ignatius dedicated some chapters of Part Four of the ten-part document to the education apostolate. Ignatius’ vision of education is apostolic as it prioritizes helping the human person achieve the end for which he or she is created: union with God by means of praising, reverencing, and serving Him.
MR AUSTIN AVURU AND THE AUSTIN AVURU FOUNDATION
Like the first ever Jesuit school founded in Messina, Sicily by the benefaction of the leading citizens of the city, Arrupe Jesuit College is a benefaction of Mr. Austin Avuru, through the Austin Avuru Foundation, to the North-West Africa Province of the Society of Jesus. Impressed by the quality of education and formation offered to students in schools belonging to and run by the Society of Jesus in Nigeria, the Austin Avuru Foundation approached the leadership of the Jesuits of the North-West Africa Province in 2019 with the offer of building a primary and secondary school and bequeathing it to the Society to provide for the educational needs of young men and women in Abbi, Delta State and beyond. The offer of the foundation was duly considered through a process of discernment, and approval to accept it given in September 2020 by the Superior General of the Society, Father Arturo Sosa, S.J., as was the practice in the time of St. Ignatius.
Construction of Arrupe Jesuit College began earnestly with the foundation laying ceremony on Thursday February 4, 2021. In fact, the memorable occasion started with the solemn Eucharistic celebration presided over by the Episcopal Vicar of Kwale Region, Rev. Fr. Bernard Olagba representing the Bishop of Warri, His Lordship, most Rev. Dr. John Oke Afareha. There were several Jesuit priests, including the Provincial Fr. Chukwuyenum Afiwari, SJ, concelebrated at the Mass. Also in attendance at the occasion were the members of the traditional rulers of Abbi and representatives from the Delta State ministry of education among others. The institution is billed to open its doors to the pioneer class in September, 2023 for the formation of young men and women intellectually, morally, and spiritually ad majorem Dei gloriam and toward lives of solidarity and service.