Discernment is about finding the voice of the Spirit of God speaking to us in the ordinary and practical details of our lives. It is a key gift that St. Ignatius brought in the Spiritual Exercises. By trying always to listen to the Spirit, without being attached to our own desires and ideas, Jesuits wish to find where the Spirit of God is leading and respond with humility and joy.
In our apostolic work, the Society engages in Discernment in Common to reach decisions about important apostolic issues. Those involved pray and reflect on the decision to be made and then share together the fruits of prayer. The major superior or Director of the work then makes the final decision. A special office for Discernment in Common and Apostolic Planning at the General Curia promotes this process.