The blog of the Dominican student brothers at Blackfriars, Oxford.

Built on the four pillars of our Dominican life – preaching, prayer, study, and community – Godzdogz offers many resources for exploring the Catholic Faith today.
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St. Thomas Aquinas

Tuesday, January 28, 2014
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St. Thomas, the Angelic Doctor.

The Conversion of St. Paul

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Popular Piety: Litanies and Novenae

Wednesday, January 22, 2014
“When you pray, do not keep on babbling like pagans, for they think they will be heard because of their many words” (Matthew 6:7). These words of Our Lord are often cited by opponents of the traditional practices of Novenae—which involve the repetition of set prayers on nine consecutive days—and Litanies—with their repeated invocations and responses. These forms of prayer are inherently repetitious and predictable; they are often caricatured as monotonous and lengthy (‘litany’, for example, has passed into idiomatic secular English: “the customary litany of complaints having duly been received…”).  Read more

Fr. Giles Hibbert O.P: Requiescat in pace

Tuesday, January 21, 2014
Following the the death of our Brother, Giles Hibbert O.P. some members of the Studentate attended his funeral on 15th January at Blackfriars, Cambridge, where Fr. Giles had lived for the past year.  Fr. Giles's friend and brother, Fr. Fabian Radcliffe O.P, gave the homily, which we reproduce here in full. Read more

Popular Piety: The Sacred Heart of Jesus

Monday, January 20, 2014
The Sacred Heart of Jesus is an image etched deeply in the minds of many Catholics. The devotion emphasises the perfect, redeeming love of Jesus, and the living water which flows from His heart (cf Jn 7:37-39).
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Popular Piety: Scapulars and Medals

Sunday, January 19, 2014
 “… I suppose they try to make you believe an awful lot of nonsense?” Read more

Popular Piety: Processions

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

In the Catholic Church processions are part of the liturgy and they have a religious character. They are public acts of homage to God, to give honour to Him, or to the Mother of God or to the saints. The word 'procession' comes from the Latin word 'procedere' which means to go forth or to proceed. In this case it emphasizes the dynamic character of the liturgy which in turn reflects the dynamic nature of our faith. Processions express the physical and spiritual condition of human beings who are pilgrims on this earth and who are always on the way.

Liturgical processions have some important Biblical precedents. For example, 1 Chronicles 15 and 2 Samuel 6 describe the procession with the Ark of the Covenant into Jerusalem, carried by the people with music, dancing and shouts of joy. The Psalmist sings of a  procession to the Sanctuary of the Altar with the singers, the musicians and the congregation. Not all Biblical processions were joyful. We also find references to funeral processions, for example Luke 7. All four Gospels describe a procession forming as Jesus rode into Jerusalem on a donkey.

There are two Biblical processions that have a particularly deep significance. The first was when Israel went out from Egypt and God led them to the promised land for forty years. The second is the Way of Cross when Jesus went to the place where he was crucified.

Processions are also part of the Eucharist. There is a procession at the beginning of the Mass, with the Book of the Gospels, and another when people bring the gifts before the offertory. During the liturgical year there are a few processions. The best known is the procession on the solemnity of Corpus Christi. There are also processions on Palm Sunday and after the Easter Vigil to announce the Resurrection of Christ. There may also be processions ordered on special occasions, for example the feast of the dedication of a church, processions with relics because of the feasts of saints, as well as thanksgiving or penitential processions.
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Baptism of the Lord

Sunday, January 12, 2014
Readings at Mass: Isaiah 42:1-4; Psalm 28; Acts 10:34-38; Matthew 3:13-17 Read more

The Dominican Seminar: Evangelii Gaudium

Friday, January 10, 2014
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Fr. John Farrell OP lectures on Evangelii Gaudium

Images of Christmas at Blackfriars

Wednesday, January 08, 2014

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