Romania: Do you have a place for me?

The Jesuit Province of Romania bravely survived the long harsh years of communism. Now with a good group of young Romanians in formation, Jesuits from other Provinces have come to help out. In a country whose economy and social services are in ruins, this tiny Province boasts an impressive calendar of social initiatives. The project Concordia began to assist street-children in Bucharest in 1991. Now 390 youngsters are living in its houses and another 300 get food and other services on the streets. Founder George Sporschill SJ (Austria) says “Much has changed since 1989, but children still run after me asking: Do you have a place for me?” 

In Satu Mare since 1995, the association Frères welcomes orphans, street-children, and families in difficulty through homes, farms and workshops. Founder: Jean Magnan SJ (France). The Jesuit Refugee Service (JRS) serves thousands of asylum seekers and undocumented migrants, visiting detention camps, offering basic aid and addressing the desperate need for housing. Co-ordinator: Luc Duquenne SJ (South Belgium). The Réseau Jeunesse Ignatien, involving both French and Romanian Christian students, has been working with disadvantaged youngsters since 1997. Founder: Christian Motsch SJ (France). The project Quadrifoglio (four-leaf clover) of the Lega Missionaria Studenti sponsors a group home for street-children in Sighet and a drop-in centre for former prostitutes at Satu Mare. Director: Massimo Nevola SJ (Italy). These projects contribute much to the Romanian Church and promise a solid basis for the Jesuit mission in Romania in the future.