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“Ignatio atque immo Deo volente”: Canisius's Tertia probatio in Rome and His Mission to Sicily

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Canisius's first mission to Sicily (1548-49), where he taught at the Jesuit college in Messina, can be seen as the culmination of the tertia probatio that he had undergone in Rome under Ignatius of Loyola. During that period, he had been trained and groomed by Ignatius, who had made him toe the Jesuit line through obedience and detachment. Just how the young man felt about all this is uncertain, although there are passages in his letters indicating that he found the various rites de passage difficult to bear. He in fact failed to achieve full detachment, for his love for his native Germany (in particular the lower Rhineland), could not be stifled. Ignatius then made a virtue of necessity by calling Canisius back from Sicily and sending him to Ingolstadt.

Affiliations: 1: Afdeling Nederlandse Taal en Cultuur, Radboud Universiteit Nijmegen, Postbus 9103, NL — 6500 HD Nijmegen, The Netherlands;, Email:


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