|Life of St. Dominic|
|Written by Sherry|
|Wednesday, 08 August 2007 13:19|
A great source for a good life of St. Dominic is to be found (naturlich) on the international OP website here
Dominicans writers like Simon Tugwell have observed that as charismatic a figure as Dominic was, Dominic the man does not loom nearly so large in the minds of his followers as the mission that he gave them. Unlike St. Francis, Dominic himself did not become the focus. The focus was and still is the mission.
Why? It is true that Dominic only lived 5 years after founding his Order (while early Franciscans had 16 years with Francis) and that he doesn't seem to have shared nearly as much of his inner life and spiritual experiences with his closest companions as did Francis.
The first years of the Dominican Order also saw a series of dazzlingly gifted and memorable men and women join the community and shape it: Reginald of Orleans, Jordon of Saxony, Albert the Great, Thomas Aquinas, etc. It is also true that Dominic organized his community in a manner that meant that the community could and did make decisions that were contrary to the founder's expressed preferences even during Dominic's lifetime.
It may also have something to do with the fact that Dominicans fairly quickly become involved with the Inquisition and so Dominic's name became unfairly entangled with the Black Legend. (St. Dominic was never involved with the Inquisition. He died 10 years before the first papal inquisitor was named in 1231. The irony is that 16th century Catholic Spanish painters sought to bring glory to St. Dominican by portraying him as overseeing Inquisition tribunals and executions.)
Or that intellectually oriented figures don't strike the popular imagination as winsome and lovable as a troubadour who would invent a creche.
That Dominic was an attractive, magnetic figure to those who knew him is well-documented. But the mission and the Order was understood to be more important than the man.