Lay Dominicans and the Order

Let me begin by saying that you may not find anything very new in my presentation. It is my personal sharing, and I would like you to accept it as such. Given the relevancy of the topic, I do hope that it will be sufficiently stimulating so as to lead us into serious discussion.

I will speak about the Laity in general, about the Lay Dominicans and finally about the place of Lay Dominicans in the Order.

Presentation of the Promotor General

PRESENTATION BY JERRY STOOKEY, OP, PROMOTER GENERAL OF THE DOMINICAN LAITY

A. INTRODUCTION
1. Thank you. Let me begin by thanking you for inviting me to participate in this Assembly and for the privilege of working with the ECLDF during these past few years. It is truly an honor for me to be your Promoter General—and I would say, probably the best job you could get at Santa Sabina! In a special way everyone wants to thank the Dominican Laity of Germany for such a fantastic welcome and preparation of this Assembly.

ECLDF ACTIVITIES BETWEEN 2001-2004

Our 1st year activity

Each of us has got e-mail access. We keep in touch by it and we also regularly meet. A meeting lasts for a weekend. Council meetings were held in Bratislava (Slovakia) in October 2001 (present: 2 members and fr. Jerry), in Budapest (Hungary) in March 2002 (present: 4 members and fr. Jerry) and in Walberberg (Germany) in June 2002 (present: 4 members, fr. Jerry, Klaus Bornewasser and fr. David Kammler).

ECLDF meeting in Bruxelles

We had our last meeting in Bruxelles on the weekend of 18th January 2003, on the feast of Saint Margaret of Hungary (the only canonised Hungarian Dominican saint). Present were the following ECLDF members: Zaida Rocha Ferreira, Eva Kameniarova, Boris Kovalenko, Nikolett Muranyi; and Patricia Robinson, ICLDF member. We elected her as an ICLDF member to become a co-opted member of ECLDF in order to establish direct communication and co-operation between ICLDF and ECLDF.

Acts of the 5th Assembly – Fognano

Presentations held at the 5th European Assembly of the Lay Dominican Fraternities in Fognano, Italy, 21-27 May 2001 (Parts of the Fognano Acts) Foreword – Patricia Robinson; Report of President – Patricia Robinson Introductory talk by the president – Patricia Robinson Letter nº1 of the Master of the Order – Fr. Timothy Radcliffe Letter nº2…

REPORT OF THE PROMOTER GENERAL OF THE DOMINICAN LAITY TO THE FRIARS’ GENERAL CHAPTER, 2001

A. PROMOTER:

1. I began as the friars’ first Promoter General of the Dominican Laity in September, 1999, in response to the General Chapter of Bologna, 1998.

2. The initial stage primarily involved establfshing the new promoter’s office at Santa Sabina (orientation, job description, goals, budget, fundraising, and files), and more importantly, beginning to meet the many lay Dominican entities in the world.

3. According to the Bologna Chapter, Acts No. 171, it was recommended that this Promoter General would preferably be a lay person, and would do the following tasks:

Justice & Peace

There’s a mouse in the soup !

Not so long ago there was a tradition in a convent of the Friars Preachers that communal meals had to be taken in silence. Moreover, you could not ask anything for yourself as you had to be attentive to the friar next to you. For example, if your neighbour needed a spoon or water, it was up to you to provide it. One day a novice, Jose, found a tiny mouse in his soup and Gerard who was sitting next to him had not noticed it. Jose could not eat as he was distressed over the fact that he could do nothing to attract Gerard’s attention. Finally, in desperation, Jose called the attendant and said, “Gerard has not been served mouse with his soup as I have!”