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From the Pastor 09/17/17

I am in Maine, so I had to write up my Pastor’s column before I left. Recently I came across some tips on Reverence in Church. I have also expanded on these original tips and made them more relevant to our church. I thought they would be a good reminder for all of us.

Called to Worship

The outside bells ring five minutes before Mass begins calling us to worship. A good practice is to be in church before the bells ring, thus giving yourselves a few minutes to ask Jesus to bless the hour you are here to worship him, to participate well in the Holy Eucharist, and share faith with one another. Ask the Holy Spirit to be with you during the Mass so you can truly be present during the Holy Sacrifice. The reverence we show in arriving on time and being properly prepared allows everyone to worship without distraction. If for any reason you arrive late you are most welcome to the Holy Mass. Please wait for a pause in the worship before finding a seat, or follow the directives of the ushers who will find you a place to sit.

From the Pastor 09/10/17

I am leaving for Maine this Monday, September 11 and returning on September 24. This is the second part of my summer vacation. These two weeks should be a quieter time for me and my dad at the camp in Poland, Maine, compared to my time over the July 4th holiday when practically my entire family was at camp. We will visit my dear mother in her nursing home as well. Also please remember in your prayers so many of our parishioners who have recently passed away, and for the consolation of their families. We have had many funerals in the past two weeks and we must remember to pray for the repose of their souls and their families who are missing them. See you in two weeks.

We can sum up the basic principles of the spirituality of St. Dominic and the Order with four basic principles. To pray as did our Holy Father St. Dominic we must:

First, follow the Lord Jesus in the Ministry of the Word. Study and contemplation of Sacred Scripture was at the center of St. Dominic’s life.

Second, our prayer is indeed the prayer of the entire Church. We do not pray as mere individuals, but as a band of preachers like the twelve apostles, supporting one another in the mission.

From the Pastor 09/03/17

Please welcome to the Dominican
Community Fr. Joseph Alobaidi, O.P. Also, our prayers go with Fr. Edmund Ditton, O.P. as he has been assigned and has already left for St. Rose Priory in Springfield, KY. In the craziness of all the summer activities I failed to let you know about friars coming and going from our community. Fr. Joseph will be saying Mass and hearing confessions and other ministries of the priory. Fr. Joseph is a Scripture Scholar in Old Testament studies and will continue his work in this area as well. Please warmly welcome Fr. Joseph to St. Gertrude’s.

St. Dominic Desire for Study

What was unusual was that St. Dominic did not see prayer and penance alone as sufficient to prepare his preachers. From the very beginning he sent some of his friars to study at the University of Paris, because he was convinced that for the range of preaching required of the bishops whom his preachers were to assist, profound theological preaching was necessary. Nothing less could meet the attacks of the often-learned heretics whom he had met among the Manichees.

From the Pastor 08/27/17

The Nine Ways of Prayer of St. Dominic

The First Way: A simple bow of the head, a bow from the shoulders, and the profound bow from the waist.

From the Pastor 08/20/17

St. Dominic’s Personality
“The memory of Dominic’s personality can perhaps best be captured by the mystic Dominican-directed Mechtilde of Magdeburg who said of him, ‘St. Dominic taught the wise that they should temper their knowledge with divine simplicity; to the simple he taught true wisdom; the tempted he helped to bear their sorrows secretly. He taught the young to keep much silence that they might be outwardly modest and inwardly wise. The sick and infirm he comforted with true compassion, caring for all their needs ... God has specially honored his two sons, Francis and Dominic, with four things: ... to welcome all; to give real help in every need; to possess the holy wisdom of Divine Truth; and cherish the power of his Holy Church.’” Ashley, O.P. Spiritual Direction in the Dominican Tradition, p. 4

“Humbert of Romans in his classic Treatise on Preaching, knew his Holy Father quite well when he wrote, ‘Finally, since all of these will be of little value unless there is a graciousness upon the lips, in accordance with what it says in Sirach, A man without grace is like an idle tale, above everything else it is necessary for a preacher to have grace in his speaking, grace to season everything. This is what is said of the best preacher of all in Psalm 44, Grace is poured upon your lips.’” Ashley, O.P., Spiritual Direction in the Dominican Tradition, p. 4

St. Dominic’s Order of Friars Preachers

St. Dominic was original in creating communities not of monks but of brethren (friars). This new Mendicant Order differed markedly from monasticism in that it would be sustained not by the ownership and cultivation of lands, but by begging. It would be international rather than local in membership; and lived democratically as brothers with elected officials, rather than under the system of an abbot/spiritual father.

Dominic aimed at reviving the wondering “apostolic life” in total poverty of the first disciples of Jesus. Because Dominic had the specific aim of preaching, he founded an Order of priests under the canonical Rule of St. Augustine, to assist the bishops in their teaching office, although he included non-ordained members: cooperator brothers to assist in this mission, and contemplative nuns to empower it through prayer. Later his vision would include laypeople as well.

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