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Dominic

Novena to St Dominic – Day 2: The paradox of the Cross

鈥淔or everything there is a season,

and a time for every matter under heaven:

A time to be born, and a time to die; 鈥

A time to weep, and a time to laugh; 鈥

A time to mourn, and a time to dance; 鈥

A time to love, and a time to hate 鈥︹ 聽(Ecclesiastes, cf 3:1-9)

 

There is never, however, a time to despair,

and no matter how challenging or God-less the time in which we find ourselves seems to be,

we are called at all times to be creatures of hope.

St Dominic鈥檚 time was not more desperate than ours, yet more than anything it could be said of him that he was a man of hope because of his amazing confidence in God and of his reverence for the length to which Christ went, in order to save us.

The paradox of the Cross:

A place of failure and of triumph;

A place of horror and […]

Novena to St Dominic – Day 9

St Dominic’s Charity and HumilityOn this the final day of our Novena in honour of St. Dominic and as we are about to celebrate first Vespers of this special solemnity, I would like to focus this reflection on St Dominic as a man of prayer , with particular emphases on his humility and charity.Jordan of Saxony tells us in the Libellus that the conferences of Cassian figured amongst Dominic鈥檚 favourite reading. Cassian tells us that humility, simplicity and charity are the foundations of all prayer. St. Dominic practised all these to a heroic degree.Take for example humility: when the Bishop of Osma made him a canon regular in his church, we are told that 鈥渉e was the lowliest of them all in his humility of heart, but he was their leader in holiness.鈥 ( Libellus No. 12) His first and second Ways of Prayer, are based on humility of […]

Novena to St Dominic – Day 8

St Dominic, The Transfiguration, & TruthOn this feast of the Transfiguration of the Lord: a feast in which we celebrate the Light that Jesus is;  the Light He radiates on all who believe Him; the Light that He wants to shine on all humanity, even on those who do not yet know Him 鈥 it seems appropriate to consider St Dominic and one of the mottoes of the Order 鈥 possibly a lesser known one 鈥 that is Veritas, or Truth.The importance of such a motto in the early days of the foundation of the Order of Preachers is unquestionable.  Heresies which denied the goodness of the physical world and the intrinsic goodness and worth of the human person were increasingly popular, and are popular even now.  St Dominic 鈥 in seeking to combat these, together with his brethren and the support of the prayers of the nuns whom […]

Novena to St Dominic – Day 7

St Dominic and PrayerAs we continue our Novena to St Dominic, I would like to reflect on St. Dominic鈥檚  Prayer.So deeply was Dominic moved by the LOVE of Jesus Christ Crucified that he strove in all things to imitate Christ, passing the day in apostolic work and the night in prayer.Prayer was the breath of St Dominic鈥檚 Life and the light on his pilgrim path. He prayed always and He won more souls by his prayer than by preaching or miracles.Fervent and humble prayer was the sling and stone with which he overthrew the Goliath of Heresy.St Dominic鈥檚 methods of prayer known as 鈥淭he Nine Ways of Prayer鈥 were various. He made abundant use of gestures, genuflections, prostrations and other postures where his soul in prayer used the different parts (members) of his body to foster its own loving ascent to God.In his Seventh posture of prayer, St Dominic […]

Novena to St Dominic – Day 6

St Dominic and the Rosary the easiest means for helping him to pray.It was for this reason that the devotion of the rosary found in him its keenest apostle. His own way of prayer, consisting 鈥 of vocal expression of love and adoration, was intermingled with silences; it passed from speech to contemplation as it fixed itself on to the character of our Lord. All these elements are united in the rosary. It was contemplative and vocal. It comprised the saying of Our Fathers and Hail Marys which were checked and noted by a string of beads, a contrivance, of course, older even than Christianity, and already widespread over Europe before […]

Novena to St Dominic – Day 5

St Dominic’s passion for the salvation of AllDominic鈥檚 burning passion for the salvation of all left a powerful impression on those who were his closest associates. The young William of Montferrat tells us that 鈥楧ominic was filled with a greater zeal for the salvation of all than anyone else I have ever met.鈥 鈥楽o we both agreed and even promised each other that when Brother Dominic had organised his Order and I had studied theology for two years, we would go away together and do all that we could to convert the pagans, in Prussia and in other lands of the North.鈥橲tatements such as these are to be found in many of the depositions made at the process of canonization. Jordan of Saxony echoes them in the 鈥楲ibellus鈥 when he says:With all his energy and with passionate […]

Novena to St Dominic – Day 4

St Dominic and St FrancisAt almost the same time that Dominic, in the Church of Our Lady of Prouille at the foot of the Pyrenees, laid the foundations of his Order, Francis was preparing his at the Church of Our Lady of the Angels, at the foot of the Apennines. An ancient sanctuary of the Blessed Virgin Mother of God was for each the humble and sweet cornerstone of their edifice. Dominic cherished Our Lady of Prouille above all other places; Francis reserved for the small plot of land sheltering Our Lady of the Angels a special affection, within the immensity of a heart detached from all visible things. Each began his public life with a pilgrimage to Rome; each returned there to beg the sovereign pontiff鈥檚 approbation for his Order. Innocent III at first […]

Novena to St Dominic – Day 3

St Dominic & MosesIn his Libellus, Blessed Jordan tells us that 鈥渆verywhere Dominic showed himself to be a man of the Gospel in word and in deed鈥 鈥 a man who brought good news and indeed like Christ, his Divine Exemplar, embodied in his own person the good news of the Gospel.No doubt Dominic鈥檚 apostolic zeal sprang from his deep interior relationship with God – we are told that he spent long hours, often the entire night, in prayer and always spoke only 鈥渢o God or of God鈥. While reflecting on this aspect of Dominic鈥檚 life, the first reading at this morning鈥檚 Mass caught my attention.  There, we see Moses being enveloped in the cloud, symbol of God鈥檚 mysterious Presence and speaking to Him 鈥渇ace to face as a man speaks to his friend.鈥 But this intimate relationship was not solely for the benefit of Moses himself 鈥 rather […]

Novena to St Dominic – Day 2

St Dominic – God’s obedient SonRaymond of Capua, Catherine鈥檚 confessor and friend, records an extraordinary vision in which Catherin sees the Father begetting the Son. Then the Father speaks of Dominic:Dearest daughter, I am the Father of these two sons; of the One by natural generation; of the other, by loving and affectionate adoption 鈥 This Son who is mine by natural and eternal generation, was most perfectly obedient to me  in all things, even unto death, in the human nature which he assumed. So too, Dominic, this son of mine by adoption, shaped every act he did, from his infancy till the last day of his life, by obedience to my commandments. Never once did he disobey a command of mine 鈥 and he preached not only in his own person, but through others also; not only in his own lifetime, but through those who followed him. Through […]

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    Reflections on St Dominic (8) – The Transfiguration and the Cross

Reflections on St Dominic (8) – The Transfiguration and the Cross

In the various Gospel accounts of the Transfiguration we read, 鈥楢s he prayed the aspect of Jesus face changed鈥. Then again, 鈥業n their presence he was transfigured, his face shone like the sun and his clothes became as white as light鈥 and yet again 鈥楾he desciples saw his glory鈥. The Magnificat magazine gives the following introduction to the mass for this Feast. It saysChrist鈥檚 tabor radiance is a kind of mirror in which we glimpse the glory that God wills to give his friends. The resplendence of the Transfiguration reveals the fullness of life destined to be ours. The transfiguration invites us to configuration. As we peer into the glory that pours from every pore of the transfigured Christ, we cast off everything unworthy of our personal relationship with the infinite, and we take on the luster of the Son of God. Jesus gazes back at us with a […]