To heighten the Ignatian Spirituality of Ateneans, Ateneo de Davao University (AdDU) held another Ignatian conversation yesterday afternoon, Sept. 23, at the Finster auditorium, with the central theme, Physical Exercise and Ignatian Prayer: The Great Connection.
Participants of the two-hour long event included the faculty, staff, and students from the Basic Education and Higher Education departments. Jesuit priests were also present during the conversation lead by the main speaker, Fr. Manuel Flores, SJ.
Flores talked about the importance of prayer and how people could integrate it in daily activities such as physical exercise. He emphasized the real definition of prayer and how it can be considered as a spiritual exercise.
“St. Ignatius defined prayer as putting oneself in the presence of God. It is a way of preparing and disposing the soul. For as strolling, walking and running are bodily exercises, prayer is a spiritual exercise,” he said.
Flores also highlighted ways to pray during exercise. It included the Jesus Prayer in which one breathes the name of Jesus as he or she walks, runs, bikes, swims, etc. Another way is to read a Bible passage twice before you exercise and reflecting on it during your physical activity.
After the main discussion, participants were asked to reflect on what for them was the most striking points of the talk. A sharing and open forum followed this activity wherein volunteers were allowed to share their personal experiences and learnings.
A faculty of the grade school department , Diana Grace Parreno shared her thoughts and her most important learning from the event.
“Palagi talaga dapat tayong mag-pray. Kung may time nga tayo para kumain, mag-mall o manood ng K-Drama, mag-pray pa kaya? A prayer will help you stay positive. It is also one way to enrich yourself, especially your soul, and stay motivated,” she said.