Since Advent of 2006 the Dominican Family worldwide has been preparing to celebrate the 800th anniversary of the confirmation of the Order of Preachers, which will happen in 2016. We began this grace-filled pilgrimage by commemorating the founding of the first Dominican community in Prouilhe – the birth place of the Holy Preaching.
The brothers and sisters who minister in the General Curia at Santa Sabina in Rome, in an attempt to give these ten years of Jubilee Pilgrimage a central focus, have decided to group the entire decade of Jubilee years under one general guiding theme, «Woe to us if we do not preach the gospel!» (cf. 1 Cor 9:16). These words of St. Paul, which could be said to be at the heart of our Dominican vocation, will be the guiding light that enlightens our steps as we journey to the Jubilee celebration of 2016. The sub-theme provided for each year offers us the opportunity to focus on a particular dimension of our Dominican life and ministry.
Advent 2006 until Epiphany 2008 was proclaimed as a special jubilee year marking the foundation of the nuns. As each monastery was a place of pilgrimage during this year all the members of the Dominican family were invited to join with the nuns in “giving thanks to God for our Dominican vocation to Praise, to Bless and to Preach God with the Church, in the Church and for the Church”
This past year Advent 2007 to Advent 2008 we remembered the important place that the Holy Rosary has played in the history and tradition of our Order.
As it is the figure of St. Dominic that unites us during these important years, during this year Advent 2008 to Advent 2009, we are invited to pause and focus on the theme: «In the beginning was the Word: Dominic, Preacher of Grace». During this year we the nuns are encouraged to focus in a particular way on Lectio Divina and to study the documents related to the recent Synod of Bishops on “the Word of God in the life and mission of the Church”.