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SAINT DOMINIC de GUZMÁN, Protector of the Congregation (Brs & Srs)




Saint Dominic was born in Caleruega (Burgos, Spain) towards 1170. He was a regular canon in the city of Osma. Aware of the danger that the Albigensian and Waldenses heretics of southern France posed to the Catholics, he undertook the task of preaching.

First, he gathered some women in Prouille, under a rule of life. Then some companions joined him and he started in Toulouse (France) the Order of Preachers. His ideal would be preaching and poverty lifestyle. He sets the center of his Order in Rome, before he died in Bologna (Italy) in 1221. He wanted his children to be mendicants and that their teaching were fed by contemplation.


The French Revolution having suppressed religious life, the founders, Fr. Coudrin and M. Henriette Aymer, in order to fulfill their mission had no recourse but to pray to the great founders of Orders and to be inspired by them. The charism of the Dominican apostolic life, in which the announcement takes its strength from the contemplation, corresponded with their intuition.

Mother Henriette, who is behind the choice of patron saints, indicates that St. Dominic was chosen first because he is "one of the beloved children of the Blessed Virgin." In addition, she specifies, he will be an inspiring example "for the instruction of youth, preaching and science"(*). In fact, the first Constitutions, approved by the Bull "Pastor Aeternus" (1817) of Pope Pius VII, enumerates the opening of "free schools for all children in poverty" and "preaching the Gospel and missions" between the activities that carry out "the purpose" of the Congregation.

(*) Correspondence of the Good Mother, billet No. 50, the Good Father, of October 12, 1801.