Category Archives: Dominican saints & blesseds

Feast of All Dominican Saints and Blesseds

 

O God, who has pleased to make the Order of Preachers fruitful in an abundant progeny of Saints, and has gloriously crowned in them the merits of all heroic virtues, grant unto us to tread in their footsteps, that we may at last be united in perpetual festivity with those in heaven whom we venerate today under one celebration upon earth. Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

St Dominic

Far more impressive and splendid than all St Domini’s miracles, though, were the exceptional integrity of his character and the extraordinary energy of divine zeal which carried him along. Without  difficulty he found his way into people’s hearts as soon as they saw him. Everywhere, in word and deed, he showed himself to be a man of the gospel….  Everybody was enfolded in the wide embrace of charity, and since he loved everyone, everyone loved him. He made it his own business to rejoice with those who were rejoicing and to weep with those who wept. He was full of affection and gave himself utterly to caring for his neighbors and to showing sympathy for the unfortunate.

The Libellus
Blessed Jordan of Saxony

St Catherine of Siena

“The soul, who is lifted by a very great and yearning desire for the honor of God and the salvation of souls, begins by exercising herself, for a certain space of time, in the ordinary virtues, remaining in the cell of self-knowledge, in order to know better the goodness of God towards her. This she does because knowledge must precede love, and only when she has attained love, can she strive to follow and to clothe herself with the truth. But, in no way, does the creature receive such a taste of the truth, or so brilliant a light therefrom, as by means of humble and continuous prayer, founded on knowledge of herself and of God; because prayer, exercising her in the above way, unites with God the soul that follows the footprints of Christ Crucified, and thus, by desire and affection, and union of love, makes her another Himself.”

— St. Catherine of Siena, The Dialogue of St. Catherine of Siena, p.1

Bl. Margaret Castello

I am always very aware of today’s Blessed of the Order of Preachers, Margaret Castello. The liturgical memorial is today. Her holiness is attractive. One biography reads:

Bl. Margaret Castello (1287–1320) was born to noble Italian parents who were awaiting the birth of the child of their dreams. Instead, they bore a daughter who was blind, dwarfed, lame, and hunchbacked. Margaret’s parents were horrified by the physical appearance of their newborn child, so they hid her and kept her existence secret. A servant had her baptized and named her Margaret, meaning, “Pearl.” When she was six years of age she was nearly discovered, so that her father confined her to a cell inside the wall of a church with her necessities given through a window. The parish priest took it upon himself to educate Margaret. She lived in this way until age sixteen, when her parents took her on pilgrimage to a shrine famous for miraculous healings. There they prayed earnestly for their daughter to be cured of her deformities, which they loathed. When no cure came, her parents abandoned her in the streets and returned home, never to see her again. Margaret begged for food and was helped by the town’s poor who took turns sheltering her in their homes. She became a Dominican Tertiary and took up the work of serving the sick, dying, and imprisoned. Margaret was known for her great joy, sanctity, and profound mystical experiences. She died at the age of 33, and hundreds of miracles were credited to her intercession both before and after her death. Her body is incorrupt. She is the patron against poverty, and of the disabled, handicapped, and unwanted.

St. Thomas Aquinas

Second Reading from Office of St. Thomas Aquinas
From a conference by Saint Thomas Aquinas, priest
The Cross exemplifies every virtue

AquinasWhy did the Son of God have to suffer for us? There was a great need, and it can be considered in a twofold way: in the first place, as a remedy for sin, and secondly, as an example of how to act.
It is a remedy, for, in the face of all the evils which we incur on account of our sins, we have found relief through the passion of Christ. Yet, it is no less an example, for the passion of Christ completely suffices to fashion our lives. Whoever wishes to live perfectly should do nothing but disdain what Christ disdained on the cross and desire what he desired, for the cross exemplifies every virtue.
If you seek the example of love: Greater love than this no man has, than to lay down his life for his friends. Such a man was Christ on the cross. And if he gave his life for us, then it should not be difficult to bear whatever hardships arise for his sake.

If you seek patience, you will find no better example than the cross. Great patience occurs in two ways: either when one patiently suffers much, or when one suffers things which one is able to avoid and yet does not avoid. Christ endured much on the cross, and did so patiently, because when he suffered he did not threaten; he was led like a sheep to the slaughter and he did not open his mouth. Therefore Christ’s patience on the cross was great. In patience let us run for the prize set before us, looking upon Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith who, for the joy set before him, bore his cross and despised the shame.

If you seek an example of humility, look upon the crucified one, for God wished to be judged by Pontius Pilate and to die.

If you seek an example of obedience, follow him who became obedient to the Father even unto death. For just as by the disobedience of one man, namely, Adam, many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one man, many were made righteous.

If you seek an example of despising earthly things, follow him who is the King of kings and the Lord of lords, in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. Upon the cross he was stripped, mocked, spat upon, struck, crowned with thorns, and given only vinegar and gall to drink.
Do not be attached, therefore, to clothing and riches, because they divided my garments among themselves. Nor to honours, for he experienced harsh words and scourgings. Nor to greatness of rank, for weaving a crown of thorns they placed it on my head. Nor to anything delightful, for in my thirst they gave me vinegar to drink.

About the author

Paul A. Zalonski is from New Haven, CT. He is a member of the Fraternity of Communion and Liberation, a Catholic ecclesial movement, and an Oblate of Saint Benedict. Contact Paul at paulzalonski[at]yahoo.com.
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