BlackFriars Volume II, Issue II - Page 6

In one parish I heard confessions for over 13 hours over the course of three days – 218 confessions to be exact! Margaret Daze, a long-time, generous friend, shares fond memories of her uncle, Father Norbert Georges, O.P., and her hopes for the upcoming novitiate class. YOUR SUPPORT EMPOWERS DOMINICAN PREACHING You may have an image in your mind of Saint Dominic traveling from place to place preaching the Gospel and winning over skeptical hearts for Jesus. The following is Father Bill Garrott’s account of the work he does, which closely mirrors Saint Dominic’s method of going town to town. Your support is crucial in empowering him to preach and he’s eager to share with you good news from his journey! WHY I SUPPORT THE DOMINICANS By Margaret Daze My husband and I highly admire the young men who are entering the Dominican Order. Gifted as they are with intelligence and persuasiveness I am eager to see them preach to the young and newly educated: the next generation of thinkers and doers. The Order of Preachers’ presence on college campuses allows the Friars to make first contact with students who are hungering for the Truth. Providing answers for these students is a challenge that I am confident the Friars can handle. I have witnessed the preaching charism of the Friars first hand and close to home. In 1923, my uncle, Father Norbert Georges, O.P., was ordained a priest in the Province of Saint Joseph. And far from being the last of his kind, the upcoming class of novices will be ordained and begin preaching about 100 years after he was ordained. They’re ready to carry on the torch of the Gospel. BlackFriars - Volume II, Issue II I still fondly remember my evening visits with Father “Ferdie” (as my family nicknamed him) at Saint Vincent Ferrer Church in New York City. I was often surprised to find him praying the Rosary on his knees in front of the tabernacle. He profoundly impacted my own life and I am in admiration of his tireless work promoting the canonization of Saint Martin de Porres. He crisscrossed the country and the globe sharing “Brother Martin’s” story of humble service to those in need. Preachers like my uncle are needed today more than ever. Otherwise we lose. The young men entering the Novitiate are giving their lives to serve Christ. Without our support, what will happen to their vocations? Our gift enables them to receive an education so that they will preach effectively. We benefit from their preaching. It’s for the good of all to help sustain them with our financial support. The Friars give me great hope for our culture. 6 By Father Bill Garrott, O.P. It has been my experience through preaching over 75 parish missions that people are ravenously hungry for Dominican preaching. It presents the Gospel of God’s grace in a way that ordinary pulpit preaching often does not. My own itinerant ministry is aimed not at the typically devout parishioner who attends any spiritual event the parish offers, but rather at the lukewarm Catholic who rarely if ever connects to the parish beyond Sunday Mass. Because I work my musical abilities on guitar and piano into my preaching, I crisscross the country by car in order to bring my instruments with me. Our culture is saturated in entertainment. I think the Holy Spirit uses my musical talent to reach into people’s hearts through the back door, as it were. Music is the catalyst by which hearts are softened and made permeable to the Word of God, which alone brings about our conversion. BlackFriars - Volume II, Issue II Success is hard to measure because the itinerant preacher, by definition, moves from one parish to another and therefore has no on-going connection to parishes where he has preached. One measure for success is the number of confessions and in particular those who return after not confessing for many years. In one parish I heard confessions for over 13 hours over the course of three days – 218 confessions to be exact! One of the highpoints for me comes at the closing: I often receive spontaneous applause when I mention that we have over 60 young men in formation. I invite attendees to assist us in the formation of these zealous young Friars through their generous donations. Your prayers and support give the sons of Saint Dominic the opportunity to find new and varied ways to follow in Saint Dominic’s footsteps. Thank you! 7