Born in 1491, Saint Ignatius of Loyola was among 13 children of a Spanish family. He grew up with a special fascination on military exercises and a tremendous desire for fame.
At 17, Ignatius fulfilled his long-time dream of joining the army. His skills and leadership qualities have quickly earned him the title “servant of the court,” and just a year after he became a military man, Ignatius was already working closely with the Duke.
Under the Duke’s leadership, Ignatius fought many battles. In these, he never incurred injuries—until the Battle of Pamplona in 1521 which left his right leg gravely shattered. While he did undergo several operations to fix his injury, Ignatius has never been the same. His right leg has become shorter than before, leaving him with no choice but to limp for the rest of his life and end his military career.
Little did brave Ignatius know, God had other plans for him. (Read: 5 Lessons We Can Learn From St. Mary Magdalene)
While he was recovering from surgery, Ignatius underwent a spiritual awakening that led him to become a Catholic priest and theologian. In his journey, Ignatius was able to co-found the religious order called the Society of Jesus (Jesuits) in which he served as the first Superior General.
Up until today, Ignatius is being remembered as a skilled spiritual director who has inspired the conversion of many faithful. His meditations, prayers, and other mental exercises are compiled in a treatise called the Spiritual Exercises, which was first published in 1548.
Ignatius was canonized as a saint in March 1622. He was declared the patron saint of all spiritual retreats and of soldiers. His feast day is celebrated today, the 31st of July.
Intervention Prayer to Saint Ignatius Loyola
O Glorious Patriarch, St. Ignatius, we humbly beseech you to obtain for us from God above all the things, freedom from sin, the greatest of evils.
May your example inflame our hearts with an efficacious glory to God and the good of our neighbor, and obtain from the loving Heart of Jesus, our Lord, the crown of all other graces, the gift of final perseverance, and eternal beatitude. Amen.
Prayer of St. Ignatius Loyola
Dearest Lord, teach me to be generous; teach to serve You as You deserve: to give, and not count the cost; to fight, and not to heed the wounds; to toil, and not to ask for reward, except that knowing that I am doing Your Will. Amen.
Prayers from catholicfaithstore.com.