The Society of Jesus (SJ) is a religious order of clerks regular. Its members are popularly known as Jesuits, a name that was originally derisory. The order grew out of the activity of its founder. St. Ignatius of Loyola, and six companions who at Montmartre in Paris, Aug. 15, 1534, bound themselves by vows to poverty, chastity, and apostolic labours in the Holy Land or, if this latter plan did not prove feasible, as it did not, to any apostolic endeavour enjoined by the pope. Canonical establishment of the order came, Sept. 27, 1540, when Pope Paul III, in Regimini militantis Ecclesiae, approved the first outline of the order’s makeup (Prima formula instituti), authorized the framing of detailed constitutions, and limited to 60 the number of members. This last restriction was withdrawn 4 years afterward. The purpose of the society is the salvation and perfection of individual Jesuits and of all their fellow men. Jesuit organization, manner of life, and ministries are all directed to fulfill this twofold aim. Official directives in these matters are contained in a body of writings known collectively as the Institute (Institutum). They comprise chiefly pertinent papal documents; the Jesuits constitutions and Spiritual Exercises, both composed by Ignatius; the rules and statues of general congregations; instructions of superiors general; the Epitome instituti; and the Ratio Studiorum, or plan of studies. There are no secret regulations. The so-called Monita secreta is a 17th – century forgery.

1491 - Born at Loyola in Guipuzcoa, Spain

 1521 - Decided to Follow Jesus Christ

 1537 - Ordained a Priest in Venice

 1537 - Moved To Rome

 1540 - Founded the Society of Jesus

 1541 - Elected the General of Jesuits

 1556 - Died in Rome

 1622 - Declared a Saint by Pope Gregory XV