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Jesuit Terms X


Xavier, Francis (1506-1552)

One of the first companions at Paris; missioner to India and Japan; saint

Native like Ignatius of the Basque territory of northern Spain, Francis became a close friend of Ignatius at the University of Paris, came to share Ignatius' vision through making the Spiritual Exercises, and realized that vision through missionary labors in India, the Indonesian archipelago, and Japan. He was the first Jesuit to go out to people of non-European culture. And as he moved from his early missionary endeavors in India to his later ones in Japan, it seems that the implications of what we call inculturation started to dawn on him.

In Spanish, the name is often spelled "Javier."

For more information, read St. Francis Xavier: A Contemporary View of His Life and Work

Debra Mooney, Xavier University

In the Footsteps of Saint Francis Xavier
Mark Antulov

St. Francis Xavier (1506-1552) on the Catholic Information Network
Kate O'Brien

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Xavier University

Cincinnati, Ohio

Quick Facts

  • Founded in 1831
  • Private, coeducational university
  • Provides a liberal arts education in the Catholic, Jesuit tradition
  • The third-largest independent institution in Ohio
  • Sixth-oldest Catholic university in the nation
  • One of 27 Jesuit colleges and universities nationwide


  • U.S. News and World Report's "America's Best Colleges" issue ranks Xavier No. 2 among 142 master's-level colleges and universities in the Midwest. Xavier has ranked in the report's top 10 for 10 straight years.
  • Xavier was named one of the "Best 366 Colleges in America" by The Princeton Review.
  • The Williams College of Business is listed as one of the "Best 290 Business Schools" in the nation, according to The Princeton Review's guidebook of business schools.
  • Xavier is ranked as the most desirable institution to attend among 139 master's-level colleges and universities, according to a survey of college-bound students by Carnegie Communications.
  • Xavier's freshman retention rate of 88 percent exceeds the national average of 75 percent.
  • Xavier's five-year medical school acceptance rate is 80 percent for applicants to enter vs. the national acceptance rate of 46 percent.
  • The average rate of graduation for student athletes (approximately 80 percent) ranks among the best in the nation.
  • International study opportunities are offered in more than 16 countries; academic service learning semesters are offered in Nicaragua, Ghana, India, and urban Cincinnati.

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JESUIT A TO Z: An expanded version of the publication "Do You Speak Ignatian?"