Eighteen Jesuit high schools, including Loyola School, from nine states and the District of Columbia have announced the launch of the seventh annual Great Ignatian Challenge, an annual holiday food drive competition intended to raise students’ awareness of hunger and inspire them to take action by working to fill their local food banks, pantries, and community centers with tens of thousands of pounds of much-needed provisions. This friendly, but spirited, competition will run from November 1 through November 23. Last year, the schools participating in The Great Ignatian Challenge collected and distributed over 334,400 pounds of food. Over the past six years, The Great Ignatian Challenge has collected and distributed over 937,000 pounds of food!
Once again, Fordham Prep alumnus, Jim Rowen, will personally support the Challenge, this year pledging over half a million dollars to support the schools’ efforts. Inspired by the commitment to social justice and service to the community that lies at the heart of Jesuit education, Mr. Rowen has generously donated more than $1,830,000 towards the Great Ignatian Challenge competitions over the last six years.
In addition to Loyola School, the participating schools this year are:
The schools are all sponsored by the Society of Jesus (Jesuits) and the Challenge derives its name from the 16th-century saint, Ignatius of Loyola, founder of the Jesuits, who taught, "Love consists of sharing what one has and what one is with those one loves. Love ought to show itself in deeds more than in words."
A key component of a Jesuit education is caring for the wider community which allows students to gain first-hand knowledge of local, national, and global issues. Through service to the community, the students prepare for the day when they will participate in their world as competent, concerned, and responsible members who are committed to social justice.