In reflecting on St Dominic, as we approach his Feast Day on the 8th August, I was impressed by something Simon Tugwell, O.P. wrote in his introduction to Bl Jordan of Saxony's "Libellus". He wrote,
In the 'Libellus', Jordan shows us how the Order of Preachers arose, not simply as the brainchild of one man, Dominic, but as a providential response to the needs of the time ... If it was, in fact, Dominic who actually brought the Order to birth, he did not create it out of nothing. The church was ready and waiting for it, and there were people waiting to join it even before it existed. ...
"The relationship between Dominic and his Order cannot be understood simply in terms of some uniquely inventive capacity in Dominic himself. Essentially he is the father of the Order because he gave it its job to do, and because he supports it with his prayers. ...
The true 'Life of Dominic' was not to be found in the past, it was to be found in the present, in the continuing preaching of his followers. As St Catherine saw so clearly, Dominic lives on in the work of his Order. ..."
"... a providential response to the needs of the time ..."
"... the church was ready and waiting ..."
"... the life of Dominic [is] to be found in the present ..."
I wondered what job Dominic would give us to do today, when our church has such great needs now, and is ready and waiting ... for us?
"Everybody was enfolded in the wide embrace of his charity, and since he loved everyone, everyone loved him." At a time, now, during these days, when it is so much more easy to criticise and condemn and cut ourselves off from people who committed unspeakable, unforgiveable acts and destroyed the lives of the innocent - Dominic prays for us, pleads before the Father for us who seek to continue to do the job he gave his Order to do: that we be love now.
Love to those who suffer
and love to those who cause so much suffering.
That we come to God at the foot of the Cross, look up, and see that healing comes only through love and mercy ... divine love ... supernatural mercy.
Remember that we have committed ourselves to Jesus, our brother and our God.
Trust, when we pray as Dominic prayed - 'Lord, what will become of sinners?', that the Lord has already won for them the answer.
We are all a part of one another and so we need to be love; love every part of ourselves. The church is waiting for us and there are people waiting for us to be what Dominic was, in imitation of the Lord whom he so passionately loved - that they may find their way home.
Ardfinnan Parish Mission - Fr's Ciaran Dougherty OP and John Walsh OP preached a parish mission in Ardfinnan, Co. Tipperary from the 2nd until the 7th of May. Fr. Bobby Power invited...
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