This 15-foot sculpture portrays St. Ignatius of Loyola (1491-1556), founder of the Jesuit order.
The statue was created by Bolivian-born artist Pablo Eduardo, who lives in Gloucester and works out of a private studio there. The statue is located at a research university in Massachusetts, an educational institution that originally shared quarters with a high school in the South End of Boston. Now it is mostly located in a suburb outside of the city, where this statue resides.
St. Ignatius, born in Spain, was the youngest of 13 children. He became a soldier and went to war against the French. After his leg was shattered by a cannon ball during the Battle of Pamplona, his career as a soldier was over. As he recovered from the injury, he read extensively about Christ and the lives of the saints and was moved to live a life dedicated to the Catholic faith.
He began to travel and eventually made it to the Holy Land. During his journeys, he experienced a vision of the Virgin Mary and the infant Jesus, lived among the poor, prayed up to seven hours a day in a cave, and recorded his experiences in a notebook that would become his famous “Spiritual Exercises”—a published compilation of meditations, prayers, and practices intended to help folks deepen their relationship with God. The work is consulted to this day.
He founded the Society of Jesus, or Jesuits in 1539, which was approved by Pope Paul III. He was canonized by Pope Gregory XV in 1622 and declared patron of all spiritual retreats by Pope Pius XI in 1922.
Where is this statue?
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The answer: Boston College