Memorial of St. Dominic, Priest and Religious
No one really likes ignorance. One of the most basic forms of charity is the desire to raise others out of ignorance. All good parents want to see their children learn and grow in wisdom. All good priests and religious want to see those around them grow in their knowledge of Jesus. The first two Spiritual Works of Mercy are about bringing people from ignorance and doubt to knowledge and certitude. It was out of this spirit of love and mercy that Dominic founded the Order of Preachers, an order founded to give people truth out of a spirit of compassion.
In the first reading for today’s feast, Paul says that the knowledge and wisdom he gives is “not of this age.” Dominic likewise urged his friars to be grounded above all in a knowledge of Scripture. In the Gospel, Jesus tells would-be followers who want to go with Him and preach of all the difficulties they will have to endure. Dominic, for his part, always refused honors and high offices, so that he could keep preaching in poverty–not just preaching to the people, but preaching among them. In this Year of Mercy, we have ample reminders from Scripture that to give a person truth is part of merciful love, and a solid example in St. Dominic of how we should give this gift.