Monday August 8, 2011 Memorial of Saint Dominic UPDATE

Thanks to Faith who has pointed out my error re the identity of Dame Catherine Wybourne in my original post . Dame Catherine is not a Dominican but a Benedictine nun and I have now amended this . 

St Dominic did follow the Benedictine rule for some years and I hope that Dame Catherine does not mind me integrating the common charism of preaching of the two orders in the context of this post.

It's also an opportunity to explore the differences between the various monastic orders which are explained well in this post- link here

Also just to balance things out I have added a video on the Dominican Nuns !

Scripture readings for today's Mass are here

Gospel  Matthew 17: 22-27

As Jesus and his disciples were gathering in Galilee,
Jesus said to them,
“The Son of Man is to be handed over to men,
and they will kill him, and he will be raised on the third day.”

And they were overwhelmed with grief.

When they came to Capernaum,
the collectors of the temple tax approached Peter and said,
“Does not your teacher pay the temple tax?”
“Yes,” he said. 

When he came into the house, before he had time to speak,
Jesus asked him, “What is your opinion, Simon?
From whom do the kings of the earth take tolls or census tax?
From their subjects or from foreigners?”

When he said, “From foreigners,” Jesus said to him,
“Then the subjects are exempt.

But that we may not offend them, go to the sea, drop in a hook,
and take the first fish that comes up. 

Open its mouth and you will find a coin worth twice the temple tax.
Give that to them for me and for you.

Above St Dominic by Fra Angelico

This link takes you to a previous post on St Dominic and the part he played in my life and a preview of a new film on his life-story.

The name 'Dominican', although derived from St Dominic, is also a pun on the Latin phrase "Domini canes" which means 'Dogs of the Lord.'

This was  based on a dream which St Dominic's mother, Blessed Juana de Aza, had in 1170 when she was pregnant: she saw a black and white dog with a torch in its mouth setting the world ablaze. 

This was interpreted to refer to St Dominic and his spiritual children, the Dominican Order - in their black and white habits - whose preaching brings the light of Gospel truth to shine upon and inflame the world with divine love.

There are seven priories or houses of Dominican friars in Britain.

Have a look here at the blogsite of one of them called Godsdogz  which in their own words, represents the 'barks' of this pack of 'God's dogs', and their aim is to hopefully gather all into the flock of Jesus Christ, the Good Shepherd!

When I was at the blogging conference in Rome earlier this year I had the pleasure and privilege of meeting Dame Catherine Wybourne, an English Benedictine Nun who loves blogging and has become known as The Digital Nun. 

Link to her blogsite here

From L to R : Dame Catherine,
Elizabeth Scalia, (The Anchoress,) ,Rocco Palmo,
(Whispers in the Loggia) and yours truly.

The website of her order is here : Benedictine Nuns of Holy Trinity Monastery, East Hendred, Oxfordshire, of which Dame Catherine is Prioress and it is the smallest  Benedictine monastery in the world.
The nuns prefer to call themselves cloistered rather than enclosed" because the word “enclosed” may suggest a closed mind. 
They have a special interest in using contemporary technology to reach out to people who would never otherwise come to the monastery.

The nuns also run an Online Virtual Retreat Service found at

This is a video of Dame Catherine's speech about the role of social media at the RSA Faith 2.0 conference : Religion and The Internet earlier this year. 

Dame Catherine has a formidable CV !! but I can assure you that she is a very engaging person with a great faith, a vibrant sense of humour and although she has a posh English accent she has no airs or graces !
I enjoyed meeting her . 

The video is well worth a look especially as she explains why Benedictines are responsible for the Internet !

The Dominican Sisters of St. Cecilia Congregation began with the establishment in 1860 of a girls' academy in Nashville, Tennessee, just prior to the Civil War. Today, over 240 Nashville Dominicans teach 12,000 students in over 34 schools from preschool to college, in 14 U.S. states and in Australia. In the spirit of St. Dominic, they continue to live a life that is traditional and yet dynamic.

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