Rev. David E. Nazar, S.J., Ph.D.

Sacred Story Board Member - Rev. David E. Nazar, S.J., Ph.D. — Director

Rev. David E. Nazar, S.J., was appointed by Pope Francis as the Rector of the Pontifical Orientale Institute in Rome in August of 2015 (commonly known as The Orientale). The Orientale is one of the three international academic institutes the Holy See has entrusted to the Jesuits.

Rev. Nazar was born in Toronto, Canada in 1952 to a family of Ukrainian origin. He was baptized in the Byzantine Catholic Rite. Fr. Nazar entered the Society of Jesus in 1973 and followed the normal course of formation, including three years of philosophy at Gonzaga University, Spokane, where he and Fr. Watson first met. He was ordained in the Ukrainian Byzantine Rite but has bi-ritual faculties for the Latin Rite.

After ordination in 1983, he went on to doctoral studies at the University of Ottawa, defending an inter-disciplinary dissertation (anthropology and theology) on the topic of inculturation in 1989. For the next seven years, Rev. Nazar worked with First Nation peoples (Amerindians) in Northern Ontario.

From 1996 until 2002 he was Provincial Superior of the Jesuits of Canada. At this time, after the fall of the Soviet Union, vocations to the Society began to appear in Ukraine. Due to his cultural and religious background, Fr. Peter Hans Kolvenbach, the General Superior of the Society of Jesus, asked him to organize the works of Society of Jesus in Ukraine. He was Jesuit Superior in the Ukraine for 13 years. Fr. Nazar is fluent in English, French, Ukranian, Italian, Amslan (American Sign Language). He also studied Spanish, Ojibway, Ancient Latin, Greek, and Hebrew.