3/2021 English Summary – successors of saint Dominic

Bruno Cadoré OP
Holiness of St. Dominic, light for the Order of Preachers
A letter of Master of the Order to jubilee announcement Dies natalis

Author who used to be a master of the Order of Preachers in years 2010–2019 addresses in his letter Dominican family in connection with 800 years jubilee announcement dies natalis of St. Dominic. He draws on the story of Dominic’s death, when the founder of the Order gives farewell to his broth­ers and entrusts them with his legacy. On this background, he presents the essential features of Dominic’s personality and his vision of the Order’s mission. It highlights above all Dominic’s fraternity, humility in favour of preaching, tenderness and humanity in the image of Christ, the conception of preaching as a path of sanctification marked by the two mysteries of mercy and truth, both of which point towards freedom, and finally Dominic’s dream for the Church: to root the Order’s preaching in a firm commitment to the good of Christ’s Church. This example of Dominic is an urgent call to renew the commitment of the whole Order to proclaim the Gospel.

Gianni Festa OP
Saint Dominic, the father of Dominican Family

The current postulator of the Order briefly recalls the important events in the life of St. Dominic that influenced the development of his personality as a preacher who wanted to walk in the footsteps of Christ and his efforts to establish the common work of the Order of Preachers. He presents Dominic as a wise man with a perfect ability to discern, who respected his companions, trusted them and, when necessary, was able to submit to their decisions with great humility and prudence. Furthermore he highlights the important elements of Dominican preaching: grounding in rigorous study, in constant prayer and in a common life based on freedom and brotherhood.

Gabriel Hunčaga OP
Humbert of Romans

The Slovak Dominican and a member of the Order’s Historical Institute introduces in his study the life and work of Humbert of Romans, the fifth Master of the Order of Preachers and a significant person in the history of church in the second half of 13th century. He recalls his role in legislative unification of  the Dominican liturgy, in the reorganisation of the legislative and or­gani­zational parts of the Order and his influence on the shaping and consolidation of the Order’s identity based on institutionalised form of studies as its fundamental pillar. He also mentions its contribution to the solutions of the conflict between secular clergy and Mendicant Orders at the time. According to the author of the study it is not possible to understand Dominican model of apostolic life and historical significance of the Order of Preachers without knowing the personality of this Dominican.

Viliam Štefan Dóci OP
A picture of St. Dominic in letters of masters of Dominican Order
From Ludwig Theissling (1916–1926) up to Bruno Cadoré (2010–2019)

Over the centuries, the Masters of the Order of Preachers have had various opportunities to speak and write about St. Dominic on many occasions. From the point of view of a historian, this is extremely interesting as it helps to identify the image that the Masters have had of the Holy Founder and how they have promoted it within the Order. By historical approach to their writings, one can know the vision each Master had of the Dominican ideal so as to better understand the reality of the Order during their time.

In this article, the letters of eleven successors of St. Dominic are examined. The overview begins with Ludwig Theissling at the head of the Order when the 7th centenary of St. Dominic’s death was celebrated in 1921 and ends with Brother Bruno Cadoré who proclaimed the Jubilee of the 800th anniversary of the dies natalis of the Saint, celebrated in 2021. The image of St. Dominic that emerged in the epistolary documentation analysed, does not present features of inhomogeneity and, even less, of significant divergences. Over the period considered, however, some perceptible changes in emphasis can be noted.

Successors of St. Dominic in the second half of 20th century
Aniceto Fernández OP, Vincent de Couesnongle OP, Damian Byrne OP, Timothy Radcliffe OP

The article presents medallions of four masters of the Order from the second half of the 20th century in the writings of their brothers; and three homilies at the funeral Masses of the deceased masters, which were said by their successors in the magisterial office. In the life of these Dominic’s successor, the charism of St. Dominic is mirrored and formed in a specific way; and the actuality of his vi­sions with which he established the Order of the Preachers is shown. The Closeness of the individual masters to each other is also a significant testimony of common life and brotherhood that is also an important pillar of Dominican way of life and apostolate.

Oldřich Selucký
The face of the other in the reverse side of the world
Portrait of Bruno Cadoré

A portrait of the former Dominican Master of the Order, Bruno Cadoré, is based on the passages from his autobiography Avec Lui, écouter l’envers du monde. Paris, Les Éditions du Cerf 2018. It passes through the key stages of his life – his medical studies, his joining the Order, his activities in Haiti, his scientific work and his vocation to the ministry as a prior provincial and afterwards as a Master – and it shows his consistent devotedness to fundamental Gospel values, such as his concern for the poor ones most of all.

To be the Preachers of God’s Grace
Interview with the Master of the Order Gerard Timoner OP

In autumn 2021, in the year of celebration of the Jubilee of the Order of Preachers Dies natalis, the current Master of the Order, a Filipino Dominican Gerard Timoner OP, the first Master of the Order coming from Asia, visited the Czech Republic. On that occasion he gave an interview to the editorial members of Salve, in which he described his cultural background,  his view of the Church and society in Europe and the mission of the Order in current world.

Eleonora Tiolli – Gianni Festa OP
At the table with Saint Dominic
The oldest painting of St. Dominic in Bologna in the Church of Our Lady of Mascarella

The authors introduce a panel painting known as Tavola de la Mascarella (Table of Mascarella) preserved in the Church of the Purification of the Virgin Mary of Mascarella (Santa Maria della Mascarella) in Bologna, which is a precious testimony to the history of the Order of Preachers. It is probably the first ever painting of St. Dominic and it is at least the oldest preserved one in Bologna. The authors describe the iconography and the history of the painting and reflect on its theological meaning. The Mascarella panel gives probably the earliest idea of how the Order of Preachers might have understood its mission within the Church at the time of St. Dominic’s canonisation.

Pope Francis
Letter to brother Gerard Francisco Timoner OP, Master General of the Order of Preachers

The translation of the letter of pope Francis on the occasion of the 800th anniversary of St. Dominic shows the respect that the pope has for the whole Dominican tradition. The pope commemorates significant personalities of the Order, saints, scholar and martyrs as well as all the sisters, lay Dominicans and other members of the Dominican family. The edition also includes the response of the Master of the Order to the Pope’s letter.

Pictorial accompaniment of the issue

The photographs accompanying this issue of Salve show the General Chapter of the Order of Preach­ers, which was celebrated in the summer of 2019 in Bien Hoa, Vietnam, and at which the Philippine Dominican Gerard Francisco Timoner III OP was elected 88th Master of the Order. The author of the photographs is Javier Abanto Silva OP, a Dominican priest originally from Peru, who currently holds the office of General Promoter of the Order for Social Communications.