22 February 2017 : A newsletter of the Australian Jesuits

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Beginning with a conversion of heart


Fr Steve Curtin SJ has been appointed as the new Provincial of the Australian Jesuits.


Fr Curtin at the Province Gathering last year. After learning yesterday of his appointment from Fr Adolfo Nicolás, the recently-appointed Superior General of the Society of Jesus, Fr Curtin said he felt ‘humbled' to have been placed in such a privileged position among his Jesuit brothers.


‘There are great challenges, it is true, but I feel a peace which I recognise is pure grace', said Fr Curtin.


Born and raised in a Catholic family in Sydney, where his 87-year-old mother Marie still lives, Fr Curtin attended school at St Ignatius College Riverview and then studied psychology at Macquarie University.


Fr Curtin joined the Jesuits in 1985, at the age of 28. In his time with the Society, he has worked as a teacher, pastoral worker and counselor, spending time working with the marginalised in Australia and overseas. He worked for five years with the Jesuit Refugee Service Asia/Pacific, first as Assistant Regional Director and then as Regional Director. A great deal of his work was with refugees from Burma but he also traveled extensively in South East Asia managing projects in Indonesia, East Timor, Thailand, Cambodia and Nepal.


Since 2001, Fr Curtin has been Director of Jesuit Mission. With his knowledge of South East Asia, Steve was given the task of broadening Jesuit Mission's support to newer mission areas while also maintaining support for the original overseas work of the Australian Jesuits in Hazaribag in India.


Fr Curtin has served as Chair of the Board of the Jesuit Refugee Service and on the Boards of the Loyola Institute and the Australian Jesuit Foundation. In his new role, Fr Curtin will oversee the Jesuits' ministries in Australia, which includes educational institutions, social ministries, parishes, spirituality centres and other works.


Fr Curtin with members of the Cambodian dance group that toured Australia earlier this year. One of the challenges facing the Society, Fr Curtin said, is bringing Jesus' Gospel of love and reconciliation to families and communities. To find love, forgiveness and inner freedom in this world, he said, we need to begin with a conversion of heart.


‘I am happy to be facing the challenge of conversion with my Jesuit brothers, with such good and dedicated lay companions and so many other friends of deep faith', he said. ‘I will rely on them and on the help of God.


Fr Curtin will replace Fr Mark Raper as head of the Australian Jesuits on 31 July, when Fr Raper will be able to move full time into his new role as President of the Jesuit Conference of East Asia and Oceania.


‘Mark's leadership has been immensely loving and thoughtful', said Fr Curtin, paying tribute to his predecessor. ‘My goal is his goal and the goal of Ignatius and St Paul, "that Christ may live in our hearts through faith and that we may give glory to God whose power working in us can do infinitely more than we can ask or imagine".


‘I am happy to serve and humbled to have been placed in a position, which in the Jesuits, because our governance is spiritual, is a particularly privileged position of trust.'


Read Fr Curtin's full bio here.



Comment On This Article

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Existing Comments

Paul Vaz,S.J...India


Congrats to both Fr. Steve Curtin and to Fr. Mark Raper for the excellent work done! I have been a witness to it these years on my visit to Australia.Wishing you both God's choicest blessings!

The Wolves


Many congratulations! Our prayers will now be for both provincials in their new jobs! Loves and prayers from sunny Winchester.



From Indonesia, I would like to say congratulation for you both. Mark, you have work done and for you Steve, may God bless your works as a new provincial. I feel that I am still as a member of an Australian province because of you both!

Jenny Cafiso


Congratulations Steve. That is such wonderful news. I could not think of a nicer "bloke" to be appointed for this job and to follow on the footsteps of Mark and all the great work he has done!!! Looking forward to working with you from across the ocean!!! Peace, Jenny

van trung dinh


It is a wonderful news to hear! I am rejoice with the Society of Jesus in Australia. I'll surely pray for you Steve. All the best in your new role.
Trung (St Felix Bankstown)

Thuy and Phuc


Congratulations Frs. Mark & Steve! You both make us proud to be Catholic. My family will pray for you. Fr.Mark, we're going to miss you very much. Love always.
Thuy & Phuc.

Carole McDonald


Congratulations Steve. They have made a very good choice. Best wishes for your future work. Carole McDonald



Mark and Steve, deep gratitude to God for the wisdom of both appointments and the assurance of much loving support as you each prepare for new roles of significant service to the Society and the people of God.

robert farrell


I am a little behind the news I could not think of a better man to lead the Jesuits.
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