Dominican Preaching Conference

This past May 20 through May 25, Deacon John Hoffman, Coordinator of Dominican Ministries, and three students, Esther Hartzell, Earl McCoy and Zaida Velazco attended the Dominican Preaching Conference on the campus of Malloy College in Long Island. Students and staff from Dominican Colleges all over the United States and Puerto Rico were in attendance, with over 90 participants.

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The conference allowed them to immerse themselves in the Dominican Tradition as articulated by the many Dominican Sisters, Brothers and Priests who helped to conduct the workshops and activities. Students were encouraged to see how they can live out the pillars of the Dominican charism; Study, Prayer, Community and Service. The commonality among the different college groups was striking, all of us realizing the central Dominican spirit that underlies all that we do.

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Saint Dominic, the founder of the Dominicans, was known to be a joyful preacher.This joy was evident in all the presentations and activities of the conference, and this spirit was put into action in service in a number of areas surrounding the Molloy College campus. Deacon John and the students also worked on strategies to bring back to Albertus, focusing on ways to enhance the Dominican spirit all through the campus community.

This Dominican Preaching Conference has been ongoing for over 20 years, and changes location every two years. This coming May it will be on the campus of Siena Heights University in Adrian, Michigan. Any present student or staff member of Albertus Magnus College is encouraged to consider attending this most worthwhile conference. At our Dominican forum in the fall at Albertus, the student participants from this past year will present their experiences to the Albertus community.

To learn more, contact Deacon John Hoffman, Coordinator of Dominican Ministries, hjhoffman@albertus.edu.

Aquinas Lecture: How Can We Talk about God Today?

Timothy Radcliffe, O.P. well known writer, lecturer, preacher and leader presented two lectures on July 8, 9 2014 at Albertus Magnus College.

Timothy is a member of the English Dominican Province and resides at Oxford. He studied at Blackfriars and St. John’s University in Oxford and Paris. From 1992 to 2001 Timothy served as Master of the Dominican Order. Visiting members of the Dominican Order on every continent gave Timothy a breadth of experience for his writing and lectures today.

IMG_5864The first lecture was entitled, “How Can We Talk about God Today?” This lecture spoke about the integrity of the human person who tries to see, hear, touch and speak through the lens of faith and how this perspective changes the person and impacts others. After the lecture Timothy engaged the participants in a lively dialogue.

The second lecture was entitled, “Teaching as an Act of Friendship”. This lecture drew on the connection between truth and the energy love provides in the pursuit of truth and building a relationship between teacher and student. Timothy reminded us of the need to center and focus on what we study and how this stance enhances the study of our students. “We need a contemplative quietness, just being there, whether with a novel or a molecule. We love things by letting them be, giving them space. So the challenge is to introduce your pupils to the tranquil love of things, letting them be, learning not to grab or grasp.”

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Following the lecture four faculty members: Robert Bourgeois, Jeremiah Coffey, Patricia Compagnone – Post and Deborah Frattini shared their perspectives on the lecture. Both Timothy and the responders then engaged the audience in further questions and comments.

 

After the lectures the Albertus Magnus College Bookstore sponsored a book signing for three of Timothy’s books: Take the Plunge, What Is the Point of Being Christian? and Why Go to Church?

Both of these lectures were made possible through the Marie Louise Bianchi’31 Fund which promotes Dominican and Aquinas studies.

The Joy of the Gospel

On February 28th of this past academic year, a book discussion of Evangelli Gaudium, or Joy of the Gospel, by Pope Francis, took place at Rosary Hall. Copies of the book had been distributed earlier to faculty, staff and students. Many more read the book than could attend the discussion, but a large group was able to join in the discussion that morning.

library1_016Deacon John Hoffman, coordinator of Dominican Ministries, facilitated the discussion. All participants were impressed with the easy accessibility of the Pope’s writing, especially how Pope Francis made difficult concepts clear and understandable. A striking part of the discussion was how each person could see that Pope Francis had a message that seemed to apply to them personally. Our discussion could have gone on for several days, but a couple of hours were all we had that day.

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The Joy of the Gospel is divided into five chapters. The Church’s Missionary Transformation is treated first, then the Crisis of Communal Commitment, The Proclamation of the Gospel, The Social Dimension of Evangelization, and finally, Spirit Filled Evangelizers. Pope Francis weaves ambitious Church goals with practical suggestions seamlessly, in an easily readable text. The simplicity and humility of our new Pope is readily evident in his work. The joy was recognizable in his words, and in our discussion of his words and their implications for us.

After the discussion, several copies of the book were presented to the Albertus Magnus Library, so this new and exciting work will be available to all in the Albertus Community. In making this work available, and promoting its reading and discussion, Albertus Magnus College has shown again how our Catholic Identity is lived.

To learn more about the Dominican Exercises here at Albertus Magnus College, click here.

Sister AnneSister Anne Kilbride, O.P., special assistant to the president for the promotion of the Catholic, Dominican Heritage at Albertus Magnus College. She came to the College in 2011 as a consultant to gather ideas and make recommendations on new and creative ways to strengthen the College’s long relationship with the Dominican Sisters. Now she assists the College in developing academic and social links with national and international Dominican teachers and preachers.

Sister Anne received a bachelor’s degree in English and education from Southern Connecticut State University, and master’s degrees from the University of Notre Dame in theology and Boston College in pastoral ministry; she also pursued further study in counseling, family counseling and theology at the University of Notre Dame, Ohio Dominican University and St. Joseph College.

Deeply involved in congregational ministry and leadership for the past decade, she served as a member of her congregation’s leadership team and as prioress. Her primary focus has been to promote Dominican life and mission now and into the future.