THOMASIANS were urged to emulate the devotion of St. Dominic to preaching despite tough hurdles, during the University Mass for the memorial of the translation of the relics of St. Dominic on May 24 at the Santisimo Rosario Parish Church.

Prior Provincial Fr. Filemon de la Cruz, Jr., O.P. led the Eucharistic celebration for the 800th dies natalis (death anniversary) of St. Dominic, founder of the Order of Preachers.

“This celebration calls to mind and invites us to our own call to holiness and sanctity like our Father St. Dominic…and to the mission that he has entrusted to the brethren: ‘Go and preach,’” said de la Cruz.

The University vice chancellor also urged the faithful to respond to the call of being a “citizen of heaven” like St. Dominic, by journeying with and inspiring others toward holiness.

There are two feast days honoring St. Dominic on the Dominican calendar: the birth and feast day of St. Dominic on Aug. 8 and the memorial of the translation of his relics on May 24.

Twelve years after his death on May 24, 1233, Dominican friars moved St. Dominic’s body, during which, it was said, he emanated the “odor of sanctity,” a phenomenon recognized in Catholic theology as an indication of sainthood.

“What was very striking was the wonderful aroma that covered the whole place when they opened the coffin of St. Dominic. It is said that anything that you attach to the coffin or relics of St. Dominic, somehow the aroma is transferred to the item. Somehow that is the background of the celebration,” de la Cruz said.

With the theme, “A Table With St. Dominic,” the memorial was part of the jubilee celebration for the 800th dies natalis (death anniversary), set by Fr. Gerard Timoner III, O.P., Master of the Order of Preachers.

The celebration focuses on “St. Dominic as a saint enjoying table fellowship with his brothers, gathered by the same vocation to preach God’s word and sharing His gift of food and drink.”

In 1216, St. Dominic de Guzmán founded the Order of Preachers to combat heresy and address the intellectual and spiritual needs of the Church during his time. 

He died on Aug. 6, 1221 and was canonized by Pope Gregory IX on July 13, 1234. M. A. O. Castillo and S. T. Sadang


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