An Ignatian Retreat to the Bottle

Ignatius of Loyola

The Jesuit Order isn’t exactly at its high-water mark of excellence these days, but that’s no reason to take it out on its founder, St. Ignatius of Loyola (1491-1556) . The Spanish saint’s feast is this Monday, July 31, and lest you have to think too hard about what to drink as you battle the summer heat, I would like to narrow down your options to one: a Mexico Pacifico. In DWTS I recommend this drink for the Mexican martyr Miguel Pro, but I don’t think he would mind sharing with his order’s founder. A Mexico Pacifico is easy to make and an excellent cocktail for summer: think of it as a more sublime iteration of the margarita.

Mexico Pacificomexico-pacifico
1½ oz. tequila
½ oz. lime juice
½ oz. passion fruit syrup
1 lime wheel for garnish
Pour all ingredients except lime wheel into a shaker with ice and shake forty times. Strain into a cocktail glass and garnish with lime wheel.

The key ingredient, passion fruit syrup, is not only what makes it so delicious but what gives the drink a connection to St. Ignatius. Jesuit missionaries in New Spain made great catechetical use of the Passion Flower, seeing in its details an allegory of Our Lord’s Passion: The flower’s five sepals and five petals call to mind the ten Apostles who deserted but did not betray Christ, the corona represents the Crown of Thorns, the vine tendrils symbolize the flagella used in the scourging, etc.

Last Call
In the Spiritual Exercises Ignatius provides helpful rules for the “discernment of spirits,” but today you can give that phrase a whole new meaning. Before the first round, adopt the motto of the Jesuits and say, “To St. Ignatius: For the greater glory of God!” Before the second round, say, “To St. Ignatius and the art of being Jesuitical!” Before the third round, paraphrase a memorable line from Pascal and say, “To St. Ignatius and his casuists, the lambs of God who take away the sins of the world!”