Companions of Jesus

Every year, about 400 young men join the Society of Jesus worldwide. A little under one hundred of them join a European Province. Their ages range from 18 years old till far in their late thirties. About 3000 others (named scholastics) are in formation within the Society. In the footsteps of Ignatius of Loyola, they prepare to be able to fully place themselves in the service of God and his people within the church and sometimes also outside of it.

The Society of Jesus is a priestly order. Most scholastics prepare themselves to become a priest. However, some of them feel called to participate as brothers to the mission of the Society without being ordained to the priesthood.


Signs of calling

  • Wanting to give more meaning to your life than it currently has.
  • Having a strong desire to find God by walking in the footsteps of Jesus.
  • The question whether or not to become a Jesuit keeps coming back.
  • Being attracted to the Jesuit way of life and work.
  • Having done the Spiritual Exercises and finding inner peace and joy in this form of prayer.
  • A desire to be part of a project that is bigger than your own person.
  • Being willing to leave everything behind to serve the worldwide church, together with fellowbrothers from around the world.
  • Being willing and capable to complete a long-term education.
  • Being between the ages of 18 and early thirties, although there are some exceptions.


Here, you will find the normal course of the formation to priesthood within the Society of Jesus. A similar education is offered to the Jesuit brother, even though the philosophy and theology studies can be less extensive. The education strives to make a balanced apostolic man out of each Jesuit, prepared to do any service for the construction of the Kingdom of God.

Archbishop Peter Smith ordains 4 Jesuits as deacons in Brixton, London, 2011

Community of the novitiate in Birmingham (UK) in 2014