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There is discussion here and there about the future of the leadership of the Jesuits. It’s sort of convoluted, but the Society’s Superior General is said to have met with Benedict many times over the past months, and the decision has been made to convene a General Convention in 2008:

Unlike practically every other religious community in the church, Ignatius designed his Society as a counterpoint to the capitular model; that is, it does not convene for plenary meetings on a fixed schedule.

The General Congregation, as the Jesuit convocation is known, is called either at the death of a Superior General to elect his successor, or at the discretion of a General who wishes to convoke the community to hear its mind on salient issues. For example, the 32nd General Congregation in 1975 was convoked to examine the Jesuit mission ten years following the Second Vatican Council — its emphasis on social justice crystallized much of the initiative for which the Society was called to heel six years later. The last GC, also an extraordinary one, was held in 1995. Between the Provincials, who sit on it by virtue of their office, and elected delegates from the provinces, the total membership of a modern GC numbers around 200.

At a private audience granted to Kolvenbach on 11 June 2005, sources within the Society tell Whispers that the Father-General requested Benedict XVI’s input on consulting with the Jesuit provincials worldwide on the "possible" calling of a General Congregation in 2008, the business of which which would "possibly" include the election of his successor as Superior General.

Catholic Outsider has several more posts on the matter, which spill over into discussions of the Society’s relationship to the Pope. Interesting.

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