A Story 800 Years in the Making

Through more than eight centuries the basic ideas and fundamental inspiration of St. Dominic have vitalized the Order of Preachers. In all epochs they have produced outstanding men and women, in some centuries an army of such men and women, in others only a handful.

Few or many, they witnessed to the authenticity of Dominic’s insights by their life and works. What the Dominican Order has given to the Church in past centuries, and what it can offer her in the future is vital and necessary, because its mission, entrusted by her — the mission to proclaim the Gospel — touches her own origins and inner being. Preaching the Word of God and proclaiming the name of the Lord Jesus throughout the world will always be needed by the people of God.

It is the Order’s high duty to preach, to be concerned with preaching, to wish it to be done in the best way possible, to be distressed when it is not being done, sad when it is not being done well, disappointed when another message is announced in place of God’s Word. The Dominican task is to study, explore, and discover better, more effective, and newer ways of disseminating the Gospel message. It will ever be the Order’s duty to prepare the way for the coming or deepening of faith in those who hear the message.

Everything the Dominicans do, they must link to spreading the Word of God. Even when doing work that seems only distantly related to preaching, they must motivate it toward the proclamation of the word. They must therefore remain in close touch with the Scriptures, study them, pray them, guide his own life by them, and spread the good news they contain.

(Hinnebusch, Willam A. The Dominicans. A Short History. Mount Salus Press Ltd. 1975.)