The murder of Fr Frans van der Lugt – 10 years later

It was on 7 April 2014 that Fr Frans was killed in Homs, Syria. We have not forgotten! Commemorative events will be held in Amsterdam - Fr Van der Lugt’s home Province - and in Homs, where his life abruptly ended. In Amsterdam, in addition to a memorial Mass on 7 April, Fr Jan Stuyt, superior of the Jesuit community, will give a series of lectures in the Netherlands during April on the spirituality of Fr Frans.

In the Near East Province, JRS is strongly involved in this commemoration. Video documentaries have been produced, one on the legacy of Fr Frans van der Lugt in Syria, his impact on the population and pilgrimages to his burial place, a second focusing on the Jesuit’s humanitarian legacy in Lebanon. In addition, a group of children recorded a hymn in his memory.

Father General himself, Arturo Sosa, wished to mark this anniversary. Here is what he wrote:

On this tenth anniversary of the assassination of Fr Frans van der Lugt in his home in Homs (Syria), we bear witness to how much he is still alive and active in the hearts of the many people who were in contact with him, including his Jesuit companions, religious sisters, priests, lay men and women.

Many people who did not know him personally have also been inspired, all over the world, by his writings, his lectures and, above all, by the example of his life. Once again it is shown how a life of dedication bears fruit in abundance: “He that stays in me, and I in him, the same brings forth much fruit” (Jn 15:5).

The occasion of this tenth anniversary is a suitable time to bring to mind and to heart Syria and its people, the country that Fr Van der Lugt loved so much and for which he felt so much gratitude. According to his own testimony, if he was able to give so much, it was because he had received so much more from the Syrian people, still today in a painful situation that seems to have no end.

Today we cry out again with the expression so often used by Fr Frans: Ilal’amam (Forward!). Inspired by his example, we cry out with the suffering Syrian people: we must never give up looking for the source of life that will spring forth in its time!

You may also like to watch the video Frans van der Lugt SJ, his last message.

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Posted by Communications Office - Editor in Curia Generalizia
Communications Office
The Communications Office of the General Curia publishes news of international scope on the central government of the Society of Jesus and on the commitments of the Jesuits and their partners. It also handles media relations.

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