A Motley Crowd

Standing, right to left: Paolo, Alessio, Mattia, Br. Paride the minister, Leonardo, Mariano, Federico, Manuel, Pierre. Seated, right to left: P. Carlo Chiappini the Novice Master, Francesco, Br Sergio the cook,  Giuseppe known as Beppe and Claudio.

Pierre Grech Marguerat SJ, who recently left Malta to embark on a new mission as assistant to the novice-master in Genoa, fills us in on what he's been up to and who makes up the crew.

A Motley Crowd

Last October nine young men from different parts of Italy joined the novitiate in Genova  to embark on the first step in their life as Jesuits. 

The youngest is Giuseppe a 22 year–old who had just finished a three year degree in philosophy in Milan, although he hails from Messina. He is a musically talented young man. The eldest amongst them is Mattia,  a nurse who is 30 years old and had worked over the last few years in health inspection. There are three engineers... Paolo, specialized in the sending of vehicles into space, which could come in handy for Jesuits!! The other two, Manuel and Leo, are specialized in the use of energy and the other in logistics and organization. 

Amongst the other novices we have Mariano who has already finished studies in Theology with an accent that betrays his Neapolitan origins. Claudio from Puglia who studied as an orthodontist and was an Italian champion in “dressage” and Fabrizio who is a physiotherapist. Alessio worked in his father’s restaurant and knows all about wines and chocolate, as well as all you should pay on the highway, where he worked for a few years. 

In order to help  us understand the upcoming trends in the Chinese economy we have the help of  Federico who is a graduate in Mandarin Chinese and is a second year novice. The other second year novice is Francesco, a policeman who is undoubtedly our best driver. He spent a couple of years driving fast and blowing the siren in Rome. 

As one can see they are a motley crowd of enthusiastic men who will be the Society in the near future.

And for the benefit of our readers, below is a photo of a fine sunset over Genoa taken by Pierre one evening - not bad at all!!

And as for me...

The first year novices started their Ignatian retreat last Saturday and I visit them every afternoon to give them instructions on the method of prayer in the Spiritual Exercises. 

My work as assistant to the novice-master is rather diverse. First and foremost I am here to accompany the master of novices, Fr. Carlo Chiappini, in this work of formation as well as to be with the novices. I lecture them on Religious Life, the Saints of the Society as well as trying to get them to speak English with a British accent not with some Italian form of English, no mean feat at times!

I also direct several religious as well as lay persons who come for a few days on retreat at our house, as well as working in a team of Jesuits who live in other communities in Genova in guiding persons who are doing the Spiritual Exercises in daily life. 

Meanwhile, I am the assistant to two groups of Christian Life Communities, while also helping out in the setting up of a group of young families with their children who meet on a monthly basis. On Sundays I celebrate the Eucharist in different parishes when needed.

Pierre Grech Marguerat, SJ

Thank you Pierre, we wish you a good and very fruitful time in Genoa!


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