Sunday, May 11, 2014

The 51st World Day of Prayer for Vocations

Let us invoke the intercession of Mary who is the Woman of the “yes”. 
Mary said “yes” throughout her life! 
She learned to recognize Jesus’ voice from the time when she carried him in her womb. 
May Mary, our Mother, help us to know Jesus’ voice better and better 
and to follow it, so as to walk on the path of life!
(Pope Francis)

As we celebrate this Good Shepherd Sunday, we thank God for our Holy Father Pope Francis and pray that Jesus, the Chief Shepherd continues to guide and strengthen him according to his loving kindness. 

Today also marked the 51st World day of Prayer for Vocations so we encourage you to take time to prayerfully read Pope Francis’ message here and also pray for an increase of vocations to our Holy Mother Church, in the words of our Holy Father Francis:

God our Father, you made each of us to use our gifts in the body of Christ.
We ask that you inspire young people whom you call to priesthood and consecrated life
to courageously follow your will.
 Send workers into your great harvest
so that the Gospel is preached,
the poor are served with love,
the suffering are comforted,
and your people are strengthened by the Sacraments.
 We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Thursday, May 8, 2014

A Dominican Soul is a Marian Soul

Crowning of Mary by our Prioress, Sr. Maria Christine, O.P.
Sub tuum praesidium
Sancta Dei Genetrix.
Nostras deprecationes ne despicias
in necessitatibus nostris,
sed a periculis cunctis
libera nos semper,
Virgo gloriosa et benedicta.

Under thy protection
we seek refuge,
Holy Mother of God;
despise not our petitions
in our needs,
but from all dangers
deliver us always,
Virgin Glorious and Blessed

The Order of Preachers has a beautiful tradition of the Salve procession where we sing the hymn Salve Regina in commending ourselves to the protection of the Blessed Virgin Mary while making a procession at the end of Compline each night (Night Prayer.) In our monastery, we also sing the Sub Tuum on Saturdays in Mary's honor.

From the very beginning of our Order's foundation, St. Dominic had commended the entire Order to Mary as our special Patroness, and there are many reasons for that.  Here is one beautiful account that related the vision of St. Dominic regarding our Lady's protection that we have heard today in the Dominican's Liturgy of the Hours. 

The following is a selection from the writing of Fr. M.M. Philipon, O.P. who summarizes perfectly the Marian soul of a Dominican: 

Under the constant guidance of Mary, our holy Father (St. Dominic) renewed the apostolic form of life in the Church, launched intrepid champions of the faith into the world, and won thousands of souls for Christ. 

When dying, he left as his legacy to the Church, the Rosary wherein his religious family might find the proper form for its devotion to Mary. Where is the Dominican who does not dream of living and dying with the Rosary in his or her hand? It is a universal law of the economy of salvation: the more devoted a soul is to Mary the more Christian it is. It is equally true to say that the more devoted a soul is to Mary the more Dominican it is.

Faithful God, you willed that the Order of Preachers be instituted for the salvation of souls under the special patronage of the Blessed Virgin Mary, and that it be filled with her unceasing favors.  Hear our prayers and bring us to the glory of heaven, protected by her whose feast we celebrate today.  We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, 
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.
(From the Morning Prayer - Patronage of the Blessed Virgin Mary over the entire Order of Preachers)