The Autobiography of St. Ignatius The autobiography does not cover the complete life of Ignatius. It begins abruptly in 1521 at the great turning point in the saint's life - his injury in the battle of Pamplona when the French occupied that town and attacked its citadel. It then spans the next seventeen years up to the arrival of Ignatius and his early companions in Rome. These years are the central years of Ignatius's life. They are the years. that open with his religious conversion and that witness his spiritual growth. They are the years of pilgrimage, to use his own designation, of active travel and searching, and of interior progress in the Christian life. They are the years of preparation for the establishment of the great religious order he will found and for its dynamic thrust in the turbulent Europe and the expanding world of his day.