Once the Jesuits (the Society of Jesus) were approved by Pope Paul III in 1540 (upper left and right), these Roman Catholic priests and brothers began to spread as teachers throughout Europe and as missionaries to the New Worlds East and West. When they were suppressed by Papal decree in 1773, their churches, schools, missions, and undertakings were lost, and the lives of individual Jesuits, many of them mentioned on this site, were dramatically changed. Once Pope Pius VII restored the Order in 1814, they began from scratch their apostolic work for the good of souls and of the Church. Their efforts before and since the Suppression have been recognized in various ways, among them through the philatelic items mentioned on this site.
The United States of America in 1898 was the first to honor a Jesuit (Fr. Jacques Marquette) with a stamp. And since then many other countries have honored many other Jesuits as saints and martyrs, missionaries and explorers, educators and scholars, scientists and mathematicians, churchmen, statesmen, pastors and artists. May this collection call to mind their mission, lives and institutions in both the old and the restored Society.
The second part of the site contains stamps issued in honor of or in some way picturing the various churches, residences and schools of the Society, some still in existence and others, especially from the Old Society, serving a different function today.
The final section, entitled Jesuitica, shows a variety of items or persons related in one way or other to the members or the houses of the Society of Jesus.
This site has followed the work previously done by A Philatelic Display of the Jesuit Mission, regular articles at one time in the National Jesuit News, the annual Philatelic Pages written by Francesco Salvo, SJ, Félix Sánchez Vallejo, SJ, Ètienne N. Degrez, SJ and others in the Jesuit Yearbook, and Die Jesuiten in der Philatelie: Eine Geschichte der Gesellschaft Jesu auf postalischen Belegen aller Länder by Walter Nissel & Wilhelm Remeš (Verlag Hans G. Schönen, Edition St. Briktius, 2005).
We have been very liberal in the inclusion of cinderellas, personalized stamps and items with only a slight reference to Jesuits rather than omitting an item a reader might be interested in. Some items that could constitute topical collections in themselvescamellia, tea, Marianne, St. Nicholas Church, etc.are not fully illustrated or cataloged.
This site covers the period from 1898 when the Marquette stamp was issued until the end of 2016 when Fr. Leonardo Ximenes, SJ, the last chronologically as well as alphabetically, was honored amid the on-going flurry of tributes to the Jesuit Pope Francis.
I am deeply indebted and grateful to Rafael Mateos, SJ and Mag. Wilhelm Reme, who have shared with me their vast knowledge of this field and many of the images on this website. My thanks also for contributions to this collection to: the Ateneo de Manila University, Hilda K. Abola, Josean Arbizu, Joseph Billotti, SJ, Jailton Caldeira Brant, Greg Ciesielski, Joseph Daoust, SJ, Dennis Dillon, SJ, Alfonso Fernandez, Roland Francart, SJ, Xarles Garcia Torres, Susan Amy Hunt, Fr. Ken Kaucheck, Noelene Keough, Kevin Kientz, Bob Kolacki, Betsy Lewandowski, Dr. Antonino LoNardo, Jasson Aníbal Mujica Sánchez SJ, Luis Ong, Jr., Gregorio F. Paredes, Friederika Priemer, T. Raghavan, Vincent Romano, Marguerite St. Clare, Richard Sartor, Don Serva, SJ, Robin Tong, and Gerardo Villar, SJ.