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About the Jesuits

The Society of Jesus is a Roman Catholic order of priests and brothers founded half a millennium ago by the soldier-turned-mystic Ignatius Loyola. But you could call us “the Jesuits” as we have been called since early in our history.

With close to 17,000-plus priests and brothers worldwide, we are the largest male religious order in the Catholic Church. We are pastors, teachers, and chaplains. We are also doctors, lawyers, and astronomers, among many other roles in Church and society. In our varied ministries, we care for the whole person: body, mind, and soul.

In the vision of our founder, we seek to “find God in all things.” We dedicate ourselves to the “greater glory of God” and the good of all humanity. And we do so gratefully in collaboration with others who share our values, including laypersons. They have become part of the “we,” the extended Jesuit family.

Jesuits draw on the rich tradition of Ignatian spirituality and reflection to help women and men become “contemplatives in action,” people who bring this spirituality into the wide world. That includes our work on behalf of justice, peace, and dialogue.

With our friends and partners, we also reach out to a broadly diverse world because that’s where God is. From experience and reflection, we know that meaning, value, and divine purpose can be discovered “in all things.”

Ignatius House Retreat Center was founded by the Jesuits in 1960. Since 1 January 2013 the ministry at Ignatius House is sponsored by the Maryland Province of the Society of Jesus. Today, our Jesuits are actively involved at Ignatius House leading retreats, providing spiritual direction, and celebrating the sacraments.

For more on the Jesuits, please see

Meet Our Jesuits:
Bruce Maivelett, S.J., Superior of Jesuit Community of Atlanta and Retreat Director (Email Fr. Maivelett)
Bruce comes to us from St. Joseph’s Preparatory School in Philadelphia, PA. He has been a Jesuit for 36 years and a priest for 25. He holds a master’s degree in divinity and a licentiate degree in theology from the Weston School of Theology. He pursued doctoral studies in international relations at the Graduate School of International Studies, University of Miami and was a Fulbright Scholar at the Universidad Centromaericana in El Salvador. Most of his apostolic work in the Society of Jesus has involved the formation of both Jesuits and lay men and women in Ignatian Spirituality.

Learn more about the Jesuits at