A statue of Father Pedro Arrupe was erected near the University Ministry on main campus over spring break. Father Arrupe was the 28th Superior General of the Society of Jesus.
Father Arrupe’s importance to USF stems from his pursuit for social justice, and the phrase he coined, “men and women for others,” which lives on through the university’s mission statement. The statue was sculpted from a large piece of granite handpicked by Father Tom Lucas and Vice President for Accounting and Business Services Charlie Cross during their trip to Xiamen, China last summer, according to Julia Dowd, the director of the University Ministry. The statue was placed next to the interfaith meditation room to honor Father Arrupe’s appreciation of interfaith dialogue.
While you may have not been able to tell by looking, the statue is actually incomplete.
Father Arrupe’s shoes which were to be part of the statue were left behind in China, and are currently en route to the U.S. on a container ship so they can be included in the statue with him. The shoes provide another consistency with the interfaith meditation room because people are encouraged to remove their shoes upon entering. Dowd said Father Arrupe’s serene pose, sitting cross-legged, serves as a reminder for all of us to maintain a strong internal center despite the business of our lives, or as the Jesuit saying goes, “contemplation in action.”
The statue construction kicks off a week of events dedicated to Father Arrupe. For more information, visit www.usfca.edu/University_Ministry/news/University_Ministry_Arrupe_Week.