After several decades when the Jesuits were suppressed by papal decree, the restoration of the Society of Jesus as a religious order marks an important moment in the history of the Jesuits and of Georgetown. Reflecting on this historical moment, we learn lessons about the vitality of the Jesuits' mission, then and now, and the important work of Jesuit universities like Georgetown, which for centuries have strived to serve the greater glory of God and the common good.
Rev. John W. Padberg, S.J., an internationally recognized scholar and author, was director and editor of the Institute of Jesuit Sources from 1986 until 2014. In that role, he made the rich resources of Ignatian and Jesuit scholarship available to a wide audience. Fr. Padberg taught and served as academic vice president at Saint Louis University, served on the staff of the U.S. Jesuit Conference, and is a past president of the Weston Jesuit School of Theology in Cambridge, MA. His written works include "Colleges in Controversy: The Jesuit Schools in France from Revival to Suppression, 1815-1880" (Harvard University Press) and, with several colleagues, "For Matters of Greater Moment: The First Thirty General Congregations" (The Institute of Jesuit Sources); as well as 75 publications on various topics in the history of the Society of Jesus and on Jesuit higher education. For 16 years, Fr. Padberg served as chairman of the Seminar on Jesuit Spirituality and editor of Studies in the Spirituality of Jesuits. His current research and writing center around the history of the Society of Jesus.