Rob: from the bank to the novitiate, with imposter syndrome
Maltese Jesuit Fr. Robert Rizzo, 29, shares the story of his vocation.
I worked in a bank. Things were going well. I thought that my life was sorted. Then a friend of mine decided to participate in 3 days of Spiritual Exercises in silence. A real provocation for me. I didn’t understand the point of it. I started looking for information about St. Ignatius and his early companions. I realized that this friend of mine was definitely brave. He was participating in this experience on the strength of his relationship with God, without knowing the outcome. I decided to participate. So I arrived in Italy, in Genoa, in the novitiate. I didn’t speak a single word of Italian. In one of the first meetings with the novice master, I remember hearing him talk about the prayer and spiritual life. He imagined that we all went to Mass and prayed on a daily basis. I replied that I thought I had to go to Mass on Sundays. I was working at the bank. The first two years as a Jesuit were definitely tough. I thought I didn’t fit in. Just up unitl recently I had worked in a bank. I realized that God had called me right where I was. He didn’t expect me to be perfect. He was accompanying me. When I entered novitiate I thought mission was something to do, a list for others to cross off. Only with time I realized that it was about being with and for others. So I changed. I’m not what I used to be. I don’t know where mission will take me. What I have learned during my formations is to focus on living the journey with joy, rather than on the goal.