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Video: O Antiphon for the 21st of December

A short clip of our community singing the O Antiphon for the 21st of December (the Dominican version).

O Rising Sun ...

In this "O" Antiphon the three metaphors- the rising Sun, splendour of the eternal light and sun of justice -- all symbolise Christ, the Son of God, the promised Messiah whose birth as our Saviour we will celebrate in four days time.

Jesus calls Himself the 'Light of the World' in St. John's Gospel( 9:5)

Video: O Antiphon for the 20th of December

A short clip of our community singing the O Antiphon for the 20th of December (the Dominican version).

O Key of David ...

In "The Prayer for the Church in Ireland" Pope Benedict opened with the words "God of our fathers, renew us in the faith which is our life and salvation". Our own St Catherine of Siena constantly prayed for and spoke of "the light of holy faith".

Video: O Antiphon for the 19th of December

A short clip of our community singing the O Antiphon for the 19th of December (the Dominican version).

Jesse was the father of King David from whose royal line the future Messiah would be born. When we read the genealogy of Jesus most of the characters mentioned were not very praise worthy according to human standards. Yet God's infinite, all powerful wisdom, compassion and merciful love were at work throughout salvation history not allowing human failure, sin, malice nor indifference to interfere or thwart His divine plan.

Video: O Antiphon for the 18th of December

A short clip of our community singing the O Antiphon for the 18th of December (the Dominican version).

O Lord ...

During this Advent Season, as we prepare to celebrate the birth of Christ, we are surely filled anew with wonder at the depths of love that led our heavenly father with those same outstretched arms to send his only begotten Son as our Redeemer -- that Son who some 30 years later, stretched out his arms on the Cross in an immense act of love and died for our salvation.

Video: O Antiphon for the 17th of December

A short clip of our community singing the O Antiphon for 17th of December (the Dominican version).

On the 16th of December we began our 9-day Novena for the great feast of Christmas, and for following seven days we accentuate that longing and find its expression most beautifully in the great Vesper antiphons for the Magnificat, called the "O" antiphons, because they all begin with 'O'. These antiphons will be used each evening before and after the Magnificat, and as the Gospel Acclamation at Mass, daily, for the 7 days before Christmas.

Monastery News: October

We started the month by hosting the AGM of the ‘Associated Monasteries of Ireland’ (representing those Orders that have only one monastery in Ireland, such as ourselves). The topic for this year’s meeting was ‘Interculturality in Monastic Communities’ by Sr Chinyeaka C. Ezeani MSHR. Her interesting and helpful presentation was much appreciated, given the growing diversity of our Communities.

My experience of praying the Rosary

Disposed from childhood to praying the Rosary, it has grown with me over the years or perhaps it would be more true to say I’ve grown with it. A prayer for all seasons of life, it has been my mainstay. I think of the structure of the rosary, the saying of the beads as a kind of enclosure, creating and protecting a sacred space, a shelter, within which Mary and I meet with Jesus on a daily basis and she shows unto me the blessed fruit of her womb, JESUS.

What the Rosary means to me

Pope St John Paul II called the rosary his favourite prayer. While the Mass is my favourite prayer, the rosary is not far behind in my preference. If for any reason on a rare occasion I fail to say the rosary, then I cannot sleep until I say it in full.

The rosary is mostly centred on Jesus and Mary so for that reason, it is very precious to me: Jesus who is Alpha and Omega, and Mary who is His Mother. In the company of these two very important people, I am always happy.

What does the Rosary mean to you? What makes you pray it?

Unlike most people of my generation, as a child the Rosary was still part of our family life. We knelt at our chairs in the kitchen each night and recited it together. By the early seventies, as we grew older, activities at night demanded our time and attention and the family Rosary gradually faded into oblivion. But the example of my parents and grandparents who always prayed the Rosary daily remained. My dad always had his beads in his pocket and prayed the rosary on the bus each morning as he travelled to work.

Video: Rosary for Vocations

On the First Friday of every month we have a special Holy Hour (7.30p.m. to 8.30p.m.) for Vocations to the Priesthood and Religious Life. This Hour includes the Rosary. Since October is the month of the Rosary we have decided to share the Reflections that accompanied the Rosary for this month’s Holy Hour.

Novena to St Dominic – Day 8

I would like to reflect a little on St Dominic’s single-mindedness in his pursuit of holiness and his mission of preaching.

As a young man Dominic studied the liberal arts at a thriving arts faculty in Palencia – no doubt, a brilliant future awaited him! However, Bl Jordan tells us, very graphically, that after a short while, Dominic “fled to the study of theology as if afraid to waste his limited time on less fruitful study.” We might ask ourselves if he had struggled with himself to give up the study of arts?

Novena to St. Dominic – Day 7

We continue our Novena in honour of St Dominic

Every saint resembles Christ in some way. This was particularly clear with Dominic who followed Jesus in everything – in his prayer, works and miracles.

Like his Master, Dominic used to spend the nights in prayer to God; he would fall asleep with his head on the altar step when he was too exhausted to continue. St Dominic spent his life preaching the Gospel and being constantly concerned for the salvation of the human race.

Novena to St Dominic – Day 6

As we continue our Novena to St Dominic, I would like to reflect on St. Dominic’s compassion for others. On his Feast Day, this Thursday, we will sing the Antiphon:

“Dominic had compassion on his neighbours and ardently desired their salvation.”

Dominic’s compassion was not passive, not accepting and encouraging the other in whatever it is they want to do, which seems to be the modern understanding of compassion. His compassion required that he act for the good of the other, even, or perhaps especially, when that meant telling them they were doing wrong.

Novena to St Dominic – Day 5

O Wonderful Hope!

The lands of sunrise and sunset

You fill with your joy. (Ps64)

I hope you may hear sometimes how beautifully the birds are singing at early morning. Their singing does not create the dawn, but they are singing because the sun has risen.

At sunset when our world is wrapped in darkness, St Dominic’s daughters and sons are also singing: “O Spem miram” (O Wonderful Hope).

What they do hope for?

We sing because CHRIST IS RISEN!

Like Mary Magdalena we hope to meet our Risen Lord face to face, and ‘to know the power of his resurrection’.

Monthly News – July

July was a very busy month for the Dominican Order around the world and for our own Monastery. Luckily we began the month with our ‘Community Holidays’ – a week for relaxation and renewal together, with less work so that we have more time to spend together.


The first and most important news! We have a new Master of the Order of Preachers: Fr. Gerard Francisco Parco Timoner III, O.P., a son of the Dominican Province of the Philippines and first Asian Master of the Order, was elected on July the 13th 2019, becoming the 87th successor of St. Dominic de Guzman.

Novena to St Dominic – Day 3

St Dominic and the Imperative of Joy

A Benedictine nun wrote:

“I continue to believe in the efficacy of the contemplative life
which acts as a lever to raise the human heart to
truth, goodness and beauty.”

From “The Joy of God: Collected Writings of Sr Mary David.” p.125

It seems odd in a reflection during our novena to St Dominic, to take inspiration from a ‘foreigner,’ so to speak. Nevertheless, she did seem to capture very well, in that short expression, something of the validity of contemplative life … if it needs validity: an answer to many who cannot comprehend such a vocation.

Novena to St Dominic – Day 1

Today we start our Novena to St. Dominic. As we know, St. Dominic always spoke either to God or about God. Since we are about to talk to God, I would like to let Meister Eckhart O.P. talk about God for me:

God is a light shining in itself in silent stillness. God is not in any place … God is not here, or there, not in time or place.

God is better than anything we can conceive: I say, God is somewhat, I know not what, verily I know not. He is all that is being rather than not being, existent more than non-existent; our highest aspirations are but groveling things falling hopelessly short of God. He transcends heart’s desire.

A Reflection for Palm Sunday

WE ARE ALL FAMILIAR WITH THE PASSAGE of the Passion Narrative in St. Mathew’s Gospel in which Jesus is brought before Pilate by the chief priests and elders to condemn Him to death. Pilate is convinced of his innocence but weak in his resolve to free him. He washes his hands and declares “I am innocent of this man’s blood. It is your concern! The rabble respond “His blood be upon us and upon our children.”

Think deeply for a moment—–‘Jesus loves us and washes away our sins in his own blood.’
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