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Novena to St Dominic – Day 3

St Dominic and the Imperative of Joy

A Benedictine nun wrote:

          鈥淚 continue to believe in the efficacy of the contemplative life          which acts as a lever to raise the human heart to           truth, goodness and beauty.鈥

From 鈥淭he Joy of God:  Collected Writings of Sr Mary David.鈥 p.125  

It seems odd in a reflection
during our novena to St Dominic, to take inspiration from a 鈥榝oreigner,鈥 so to
speak.  Nevertheless, she did seem to
capture very well, in that short expression, something of the validity of
contemplative life 鈥 if it needs validity: an answer to many who cannot
comprehend such a vocation.

And in his letter to the nuns
of the Order, away back in 1971, fr Anicetus Fernandez 鈥 then Master of the
Order of Preachers 鈥 observed that

鈥榯his contemplative life, the 鈥渂est part鈥 of the Christian life, has always held a most important place in the Church and the Order, but […]

A St Patrick’s Day Poem

On St Patrick鈥檚 Day we usually have a little Celebration/Concert in the afternoon. This year one of our Sisters recited this poem (her own composition), which we would like to share with you.

Ireland, dear Ireland
So fair, so green,
Proud of her Mother 鈥
Our Lady, Our Queen.
Proud of her Patron,
St. Patrick, so dear,
To each Irish heart 鈥
Especially near.
Shepherd of souls,
God鈥檚 gift to us all,
Man of deep Prayer,
Who answered God鈥檚 Call 鈥
A Call to bring
Gospel tidings of Joy,
Which God had taught him,
As a young Shepherd boy.
Called to teach the Irish,
In this special land,
All that God鈥檚 goodness
For them had planned 鈥
To spread the Faith,
God鈥檚 gift beyond measure,
And to spread His Love,
A priceless treasure.
Dear Father in Heaven,
On this beautiful day
With pleading hearts,
We earnestly pray 鈥
In this Emerald Isle,
Please strengthen anew,
The Gift of Faith,
With trusting hearts, we 鈥榯hank You鈥.

Ancient Antiphons for a New Year

Speaking about God and speaking with God must always go together.

The liturgy is not a secondary theme next to the preaching about the living God,

but the realization of our relationship with God鈥 (p. Benedict XVI)

The different times in the year- ordinary time, Advent, Christmas, Lent and Ester- should feel different, different melodies, different colours, as different as the spring is from the summer, and summer from the autumn. Often the modern liturgy does not communicate this.

In our 2019 Calendar we share with you some images of a beautifully illuminated antiphonary from our archives, which was used for Vespers of the Major Feasts through the year, until the liturgy changed after Vatican II. The work of illustration was accomplished by the sisters over many years and completed in 1910.

Liturgical celebration is a constant thread running through our days so that we might be woven in our ‘consecration to […]

Novena to St Dominic 2018 – Day 9

On this last day of the Novena, the eve of St. Dominic鈥檚 Day, I would like to speak on the humility of St Dominic. I have always admired Dominic鈥檚 humility- probably because I am so much lacking in it myself!

鈥淲e are told that in his lifetime, Dominic had wished to be treated always as 鈥榦ne of the brethren鈥- as simply 鈥楤rother Dominic鈥 and his dying wish was that he should be buried under the feet of his brethren. It is quite in accordance with his own temperament that he should live on in the Church, not as a striking individual, but in the work of preaching the Gospel, for which he instituted his Order. It is not surprising, then, that he has never been one of the popular favourites among the saints. Men and women do not keep returning to the thought of the man, Dominic, as they do […]

Novena to St Dominic – 2018 – Day 4


O Rose of Patience

Each night at the end of Compline we address St Dominic with the antiphon O Lumen: 鈥淥 light of the Church, teacher of truth, rose of patience, ivory of chastity, you freely poured forth the waters of wisdom, preacher of grace unite us with the blessed.聽 I would like to reflect on the title 鈥極 rose of patience.鈥

Reading through the biographical documents 鈥 the process of canonisation and the Libellus of Blessed Jordan of Saxony we notice that almost all the witnesses mention Dominic鈥檚 patience 鈥 very often his patience is linked to his humility, his kindness and compassion and his love of poverty.聽 He was patient with himself, with God and with his brothers and sisters.聽 We may ask ourselves what was the source of Dominic鈥檚 patience?聽 What was his secret that we too might learn?聽 It seems to me that his patience was the […]

Our New Card Catalogue is now available

Our Card Catalogue for 2018/19 is now available. It features a number of new cards; including, to mark the celebration of the World Meeting of Families in Dublin this August, a ‘Holy Family Icon Card’ by one of our Sisters.
Please click here to download the full catalogue.

A Window into Our Life

Welcome to a new 鈥榝eature鈥 on our web-site 鈥


We shall call it a 鈥榃indow into the Life of a Dominican Nun,鈥 in a rather loose way.


Through this 鈥榳indow,鈥 we hope to give you an idea of what the life of a contemplative nun of the Order of Preachers consists in; to offer some food for thought; maybe also help you to encounter God in a more personal way; and to help any young women who might be discerning a vocation, to understand better who we are and whether how we live, is how they also seek to live, for the glory of God and the salvation of souls.


The beginning of our Constitutions shows how we are so closely connected to our brothers and sisters in the Dominican Family:

鈥溾 the first reason for which we are gathered together in community

is to live in harmony, having one mind and heart in […]

Saturday 24th March: Visit of the Master of the Order

Some photos from the recent visit of the Master of the Order, Fr. Bruno Cador茅, to our monastery during his visitation of the Irish Dominican Province. He was accompanied by Fr Alain Arnould OP and Fr Gerard Dunne OP, the vicar of the Master for our Monastery.


4th Sunday of Lent Laetare Sunday Reflection

鈥淚f I forget you, Jerusalem, let my right hand wither. 鈥︹

鈥淲e are God鈥檚 work of art, created in Christ Jesus to live the good life, which from the beginning He had meant us to live it.鈥

鈥溾 but the man who lives by the truth comes out into the light,

so that it may be plainly seen that what he does is done in God.鈥

Our Lenten journey has arrived at its half-way point and today, we have been invited to rejoice.

To rejoice, obviously, in the Lord, Who is the source of all our good and of all the goodness around us.

To rejoice, possibly, in the fact that there are only three more weeks left of Lent 鈥 with St Patrick and St Joseph to look forward to, who will enable us to break the journey for a while, and thus help us to persevere 鈥 鈥

There may yet be something […]

Homily preached at Sr M Cathy’s Solemn Profession

聽聽 The following homily was preached by Fr John Harris OP at Sr M Cathy’s Solemn Profession:

In the old vocations booklet for the Irish province from the 1950s the photographs go through the various stages of the formation of novices and students. By the second last page one arrives at pictures of the priest鈥檚 ordination and first Mass, turning the page, the final picture on the last page was of the graveyard in Tallaght. As if to say once you were ordained then the next major moment in one鈥檚 life was the grave. I am not saying today is the last big day in the life of Sr. Mary Cathy and the next stop is the community graveyard on the Chord Road. Or am I? For today you will use those stark words: I promise obedience until death.

At the end of today鈥檚 Gospel, we read: When they had […]