Monday, August 08, 2011

Feast of St. Dominic - 8 August

(Originally posted 8 August 2006)

St. Dominic in Prayer, by El Greco

From the Patron Saints Index:
Dominic de Guzman

8 August

Born of wealthy Spanish nobility. Son of Blessed Joan of Aza. When she was pregnant, his mother had a vision that her unborn child was a dog who would set the world on fire with a torch it carried in its mouth; a dog with a torch in its mouth became a symbol for the order which he founded, the Dominicans. At Dominic's baptism, Blessed Joan saw a star shining from his chest, which became another of his symbols in art, and led to his patronage of astronomy.

Studied philosophy and theology at the University of Palencia. Priest. Canon of the cathedral of Osma. Augustinian. Worked for clerical reform. Lifelong apostolate among heretics, especially Albigensians, and especially in France. Worked with Blessed Peter of Castelnau. Founded the Order of Friars Preachers (Dominicans) in 1215, a group who live a simple, austere life, and an order of nuns dedicated to the care of young girls. Friend of Saint Amata of Assisi.

At one point Dominic became discouraged at the progress of his mission; no matter how much he worked, the heresies remained. But he received a vision from Our Lady who showed him a wreath of roses, representing the rosary. She told him to say the rosary daily, teach it to all who would listen, and eventually the true faith would win out. Dominic is often credited with the invention of the rosary; it actually pre-dates him, but he certainly spread devotion to it, and used it to strengthen his own spiritual life.

Reported miracle worker who brought four people back from the dead. Legend says that Dominic received a vision of a beggar who, like Dominic, would do great things for the Faith. Dominic met the beggar the next day. He embraced him and said, "You are my companion and must walk with me. If we hold together, no earthly power can withstand us." The beggar was Saint Francis of Assisi.

1170 at Calaruega, Burgos, Old Castile

4 August 1221 at Bologna

13 July 1234 by Pope Gregory IX at Rieti, Italy

Name Meaning
belonging to God

astronomers; astronomy; prelature of Batanes-Babuyanes, Philippines; diocese of Bayombong, Philippines; Dominican Republic; falsely accused people; Santo Domingo Indian Pueblo; scientists

Prayer I to...
Prayer II to...

chaplet, Dominican carrying a rosary and a tall cross; Dominican holding a lily; Dominican with dog and globe; Dominican with fire; Dominican with star shining above his head; rosary; star

Gallery of images of Saint Dominic [50 images, 713 kb]

Commercial Links related to Saint Dominic

Additional Information
Google Directory
New Catholic Dictionary
Fausto Appetente Die: On Saint Dominic, by Pope Benedict XV

A man who governs his passions is master of his world. We must either command them or be enslaved by them. It is better to be a hammer than an anvil.
- Saint Dominic
Dominic possessed such great integrity and was so strongly motivated by divine love, that without a doubt he proved to be a bearer of honor and grace. And since a joyful heart animates the face, he displayed the peaceful composure of a spiritual man in the kindness he manifested outwardly and by the cheerfulness of his countenance.

Wherever he went he showed himself in word and deed to be a man of the Gospel. During the day no one was more community-minded or pleasant toward his brothers and associates. During the night hours no one was more persistent in every kind of vigil and supplication. He seldom spoke unless it was with God, that is, in prayer, or about God; and in this matter he instructed his brothers.

Frequently he made a special personal petition that God would deign to grant him genuine charity in caring for and obtaining the salvation of men. For he believed that only then would he be truly a member of Christ, when he had given himself totally for the salvation of men, just as the Lord Jesus, the Savior of all, had offered himself completely for our salvation. So, for this work, after a lengthy period of careful and provident planning, he founded the Orders of Friars Preachers.

In his conversations and letters he often urged the brothers of the Order to study constantly the Old and New Testaments. He always carried with him the gospel according to Matthew and the epistles of Paul, and so well did he study them that he almost knew them from memory.

Two or three times he was chosen bishop, but he always refused, preferring to live with his brothers in poverty. Of him Pope Gregory IX declared: "I knew him as a steadfast follower of the apostolic way of life. There is no doubt that he is in heaven, sharing in the glory of the apostles themselves."

- from various writings on the history of the Order of Preachers

St. Dominic Receiving the Rosary from Our Blessed Lady

Also, St. Dominic Web Links from
Pierre Mandonnet, O.P.: St. Dominic and His Work

New "St. Dominic Page" on the St. Joseph Province website

The Life of St. Dominic by fr. Gregory Anderson, OP

St. Dominic: Biographical Documents, ed. by Francis C. Lehner, O.P.

The First Disciples of St. Dominic, Adapted and Enlarged From Father Anthony Touron's Histoire Abrégée des Premiers Disciples de saint Dominique By The Very Rev. Victor F. O'Daniel, O.P., S.T.M., Litt.D.

St. Dominic Clip-Art

St. Dominic and His Symbols

Litany of St. Dominic

Father Paul A. Duffner, O.P. IN DEFENSE OF A TRADITION: St. Dominic and the Rosary
The Rosary Light & Life - Vol 49, No 5, Sep-Oct 1996

Who's Who in Medieval History: St. Dominic

Catholic Encyclopedia: ST. DOMINIC

St. Dominic from The Penguin Dictionary of the Saints

St. Dominic and the Rosary by Robert Feeney

The Nine Ways of Prayer of St. Dominic

Biography & Readings for St. Dominic, August 8, according to the Episcopal Church

Patron Saints Index: Dominic de Guzman

ST. DOMINIC Founder of the Order of Friars Preachers

Saint Dominic Adoring the Crucifixion

FRA ANGELICO, Fra (b. cca. 1400, Vicchio nell Mugello, d. 1455) Roma)
Manuscript painting of St. Dominic by Taddeo Crivelli Italian, Ferrara, about 1469

Fra Angelico Mocking of Christ with the Virgin and Saint Dominic
1439-1443 Fresco 73 5/8 x 59 1/2 in (187 x 151 cm) Cell 7, Convent of San Marco, Florence

Saint Dominic Founder of the Friars Preachers, Confessor
Taken from "Lives of Saints", Published by John J. Crawley & Co., Inc.

Fra Angelico: The Glorification of Saint Dominic

Saint Dominic Reviving Napoleone Orsini, Nephew of the Cardinal of Fossanova,
1516 oil on panel Accademia Carrara di Belle Arti, Bergamo

Santo Domingo de Guzman, by Blessed Fra. Angelico

The Nine Ways of Prayer of St. Dominic from the Fish Eaters website.

From the Medieval Saints Yahoo Group:
St. Dominic de Guzman, confessor, founder of the Order of Preachers (Dominicans)
Also Domingo de Guzman
Died August 4,1221 at Bologna
Canonized July 1234 by Pope Gregory IX
Commemorated August 8 (also August 3 or 4)

Patronage: astronomers, astronomy, Dominican Republic, falsely accused people, scientists

In art: Portrayed as a Dominican carrying a rosary and a tall cross; Dominican holding a lily; Dominican with dog and globe; Dominican with dog carrying a torch in its mouth; Dominican with fire; Dominican with star shining above his head; rosary; star

SAINT DOMINIC, Founder (1170-1221)

Saint Dominic de Guzman was born in Spain in 1170. As a student, he sold his books to feed the poor during a famine, and offered himself to ransom a slave. At the age of twenty-five, after taking the religious habit he became acting Superior of the Canons Regular of Saint Augustine in Osma, and was soon offered an episcopal chair at Compostella. He answered as afterward he also answered many times: "God has not sent me to be a bishop, but to preach." He accompanied his prelate to southern France on a commission for the king of Castille. There his heart was well-nigh broken by the ravages of the Albigensian heresy, a variant of ancient Manicheanism, and the source of devastating wars in southern France. His life from that time on was devoted to the conversion of heretics and the defense of the Faith.

In the year 1199, while he was still a Canon Regular of Saint Augustine and was preaching near the Spanish coasts, he was taken captive, with all his audience and a Brother in religion, by a band of pirates. They placed the prisoners in their galleys at the oars. When a furious storm broke, the young Saint exhorted the disciples of Mohammed to think seriously of their souls, to open their eyes to the truth of Christianity, and above all, to invoke the Mother of God. They did not listen until his third exhortation, at a moment when it was clear the ship and passengers could not be saved. They swore to him then that if the God of Christians preserved them by the intercession of His Holy Mother, they would dedicate themselves to their service. Immediately the storm ceased, and the pirates kept their word.

When in his 46th year, and with six companions, he began the great Order of preaching Friars, this Order with that of the Friars Minor, founded by his contemporary friend Saint Francis of Assisi, was the chief means God employed to renew Christian fervor during the Middle Ages. In addition, Saint Dominic founded his Second Order for nuns for the education of Catholic girls, and his Third Order, or Tertiaries, for persons of both sexes living in the world. God abundantly blessed the new Order, and France, Italy, Spain, and England welcomed the Preaching Friars. Our Lady took them under Her special protection. During a debate with the heretics, a book by the Saint, defending Her Immaculate Conception, was thrown into the flames along with one by the heretics, to see whether one might be spared. Saint Dominic's was not injured, and many heretics were converted.

It was in 1208, while Saint Dominic knelt in the little chapel of Notre Dame de La Prouille, and implored the great Mother of God to save the Church, that Our Lady appeared to him and gave him the Rosary, bidding him to go forth and preach it. During the famous battles in southern France against the Albigensians, with his rosary in hand he revived the courage of the Catholic armies, led them to victory against overwhelming numbers, and finally subdued the heresy. His nights were spent in prayer; and, though all beheld him as an Angel of purity, before morning broke he would scourge himself to blood. His words rescued countless souls, and three times raised the dead to life. At length, on August 6, 1221, at the age of fifty-one, he gave up his soul to God.


A man who governs his passions is master of his world. We must either command them or be enslaved by them. It is better to be a hammer than an anvil.
- Saint Dominic


More on St. Dominic at:

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