Listers, laudare – benedicere – praedicare. What is a Dominican? According to the Dominican Friars of the Province of St. Joseph, “The Order of Preachers, also known as the Dominicans, was founded by St. Dominic de Guzman (1170-1221), a Spanish priest who was struck by the need for preaching the true faith in light of the rampant heresy he encountered while travelling in southern France… Gradually he attracted men to join him in his task of preaching, and began the process of formally establishing the Order of Preachers. On December 22, 1216, Pope Honorius III formally approved the new Order, and Dominic served as the Master or superior of the entire Order until his death in 1221.”

“The Dominican friars of the Province of St. Joseph were founded in 1806 by Edward Dominic Fenwick, O.P., an American who had joined the English Province of the Order as a young man during its exile in Belgium. Fenwick eventually returned to the United States with the dream of establishing the Order in his native land. Due to the shortage of priests in the western states, Fenwick first established the province in Kentucky, and soon extended the ministry to Ohio. In the mid-nineteenth century, the province began ministering on the East Coast while continuing its presence in Ohio and Kentucky. In the first decades of the twentieth century, two educational institutions were established: in 1906, the Dominican House of Studies in Washinton, DC, and in 1917 Providence College in Rhode Island.”1


Support the Province of St. Joseph Online

Province of St. Joseph Website

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Dominicana – Blog of the Dominican Students

Vocation Director on Twitter

Blog of the Dominican Vocations Director


Many of the listers may recognize Dominicana from our list of 12 Catholic Blogs Worth Your Time. Along with the aforementioned links, we have greatly enjoyed following Pius OP on Twitter and browsing his blog: Ubi Spiritus Domini Ibi Libertas. The Dominicans will always have a special place here at SPL. Many of our staff attended Ave Maria University; there we studied alongside the Dominican Sisters of Mary, Mother of the Eucharist in our graduate courses and watched as they served the community with joy and wisdom. And of course, SPL is dedicated to a Dominican, the Common Doctor of the Church, St. Thomas Aquinas.2 Fr. James Schall, SJ, has said that the ills of our time may be defined by the absence of a single book: “This book is the Summa Theologiae of Thomas Aquinas, the philosopher and theologian of the Middle Ages, the absence of whose presence has defined our modernity.”3 It is also impossible to speak of the Dominicans without speaking of Our Lady. It was to St. Dominic that the Queen of Heaven appeared and taught him how to pray the Holy Rosary, Her Psalter.4 SPL has written extensively on both St. Thomas Aquinas and the Holy Rosary. That said, the Dominican  tradition is rich and diverse and the following videos are from the men who are living out this good and holy vocation. Please watch and share the list with others so that more and more people may know the good these men of God do.5


Dominican Province of St. Joseph

1. Five Paths to the Priesthood

Five Paths to the Priesthood chronicles the very different journeys of five Dominican Friars to the moment of their ordination as priests of Jesus Christ and what this has meant to them in their new lives as servants of the people of God.


2. Leaving All Things Behind

“LEAVING ALL THINGS BEHIND” is a Dominican vocation video from the Dominican Province of St. Joseph, the Eastern Province in the United States of America. Filmed at St. Gertrude Priory in Cincinnati, Ohio in August of 2010. This video has footage of the largest class of Novices in 44 years for this province (21 men enter our novitiate in 2010).


3. An Icon of New Evangelization

“The Catholic Center at NYU: An Icon of New Evangelization” introduces the new space designated for the spiritual and intellectual formation of 18,000 Catholic students at New York University — and the mission of the Dominican friar chaplains, missionaries, and students who have, in the most secular city in the world, picked up their cross.


4. March for Life 2013

The Dominican presence at the 2013 march for life in Washington D.C. The video follows Bro. Edmud McCullough OP, former FOCUS Missionary and other friars.


5. All Saints Vigil 2012

The All Saints Vigil is an annual event that draws over four hundred young people from the DC and North Virginia area. The following video is a time-lapse from the Dominican Priory of the Immaculate Conception. Those wishing to hear the schola from the All Saints Vigil: Dominican House of Studies Schola Videos.


6. De Profundis

It is an annual tradition at the Dominican House of Studies in Washington DC that in November, the month when the Church remembers the dead, the Student Brothers visit the nearby cemetery of our deceased brethren and pray for them. During the rest of the year, Dominican Friars join in praying the De Profundis each night, before entering the refectory, with the names of the deceased for the day being read aloud.


7. The Grace of Preaching

Excerpt from a talk on Dominican Preaching given at the Dominican House of Studies in Washington, D.C. on February 14, 2009. Fr. Dominic Legge, O.P., is a member of the Eastern Dominican Province and teaches theology at Providence College. The complete talk was 45 min. in length and can be viewed at the Province of St. Joseph.


8. EWTN Live – Dominican Life

EWTN Global Catholic Television Network: EWTN Live with Fr. Mitch Pacwa, S.J. interviewing Fr. Benedict Croell, OP and Fr. Nicanor Austriaco, OP,PhD on the Dominican religious life.


9. The Dominican Order – 1964 Vocation Film Excerpts

Excerpts from “And the world looks at us”, a 1964 Dominican Province of Saint Joseph vocation film written by Fr. Dominic Rover, O.P., and narrated by Dana Elcar. The original film was 28 min in length. The scenes included here were filmed at St. Stephen Priory in Dover, MA, the Dominican House of Studies, Washington, D.C., and St. Dominic Church, Washington, D.C.6


10. Friars Go Christmas Caroling

Archbishop Augustine DiNoia OP joined some friars of the Dominican House of Studies (& a couple of the Nashville Dominican Sisters) in Washington DC to go caroling and pass out holy cards with a message of Hope to help prepare DC’ers for Christmas. A little of the New Evangelization! The Lord seems to be touching the guy in the blue coat.


11. Dominican Friars Caroling Lo How a Rose

Archbishop Augustine DiNoia OP on his recent trip back from Rome, joined some of the friars of the Dominican House of Studies (& a couple of the Nashville Dominican Sisters) in Washington DC to go caroling and pass out holy cards with a message of Hope to help prepare DC’ers for Christmas. A little of the New Evangelization!


12. The Famous “Meeting of Bananas” in Chinatown

The Dominicans are chalking this one up to the “New Evangelization.” The Dominicans did not film this encounter, but according to the person who did film it: “Left work at 9:00 p.m. and bump into the choir of the Dominican Friars singing on a corner of Gallery Place Chinatown, Washington D.C. It’s December and Christmas is around the corner… when suddenly a heard of bananas arrived. Watch what happens.”


13. Totus Tuus

Some of the student brothers practice Totus Tuus, a song dedicated to Our Lady and the motto of Bl. John Paul II. The Dominican Province of St. Joseph, the Eastern Province in the United States has it’s House of Studies in Washington DC across the street from the Catholic University of America and the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception.


Interested in becoming a Dominican? Contact Fr. Benedict Croell, OP, the vocations director (here) and follow OP Vocations on Twitter or check out their blog Order of Preachers Vocations.


Dominican History: Read more about the overall history of the Order of Preachers. [↩]

AQUINAS: Those who want to begin to examine the writings of this saint may reference Queen of the Sciences: 4 Questions to Understand the Throne of Theology and Think Like a Catholic: 7 Questions on the Four Laws. [↩]

Fr. James Schall SJ Quote: Modern Man has Lost His Way [↩]

ROSARY: SPL’s John Henry has written a couple excellent lists on the Holy Rosary, including: Regina Sanctissima: 6 Things All Catholics Should Know About the Rosary and Virgin Potens: 8 Pope Comment on the Holy Rosary. [↩]

VIDEOS: Much thanks to Fr. Benedict Croell, OP, who selected the presented videos. Be sure to check out the Dominican Youtube channel Dominican Friars and the website Kindly Light - a project of the Dominican Province of St. Joseph that has done various documentaries that have appeared on Catholic TV. [↩]

1964: From the archives of the Dominican Theological Library  the Dominican House of Studies, Washington, D.C.; Audio lectures by Fr. J.F. Hinnebusch on the history of the Dominican Order are available. [↩]

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