Great Preacher Award

2015 Honoree: Bishop Robert Barron, acclaimed author, speaker, and theologian


Aquinas Institute of Theology is pleased to honor Bishop Robert Barron, acclaimed author, speaker, and theologian, as the 21st recipient of its annual Great Preacher Award. The Award will be presented to Bishop Barron on Thursday, October 22, 2015, at The Cedars Banquet Hall in St. Louis, with a VIP pre-reception taking place at 6:00 p.m., followed by an award dinner at 7:00 p.m.

Aquinas Institute, founded by the Order of Preachers (Dominicans), instituted the Great Preacher Award in 1995 to recognize those, who by their words and actions, have contributed in an outstanding way to the building up of the Catholic community. Aquinas Institute considers the Great Preacher Award a powerful means of renewing the Church and promoting good preaching while sharing its Dominican charism. The award is intended not only to sustain preachers of the Word but also to help Catholics become more attuned to hearing the Word.

Bishop Barron received a Master’s Degree in Philosophy from the Catholic University of America in 1982, was ordained in 1986 as a priest of the Archdiocese of Chicago, and then received a doctorate in Sacred Theology from the Institut Catholique de Paris in 1992. He was appointed to the theological faculty of Mundelein Seminary in 1992 and subsequently served as the Rector and President of The University of Saint Mary of the Lake/Mundelein Seminary. On July 21, 2015 Pope Francis appointed him Auxiliary Bishop of Archdiocese of Los Angeles

Bishop Barron is the creator and host of Catholicism, a groundbreaking, award winning documentary series about the Catholic faith. The series has aired across the country on PBS and EWTN, and has been broadcast in parishes, universities, schools and media outlets throughout the world. He is also the founder of the global media ministry Word on Fire, which reaches millions of people by utilizing the tools of new media to draw people into or back to the Catholic faith.

In 2013, he released the follow-up documentary Catholicism: The New Evangelization. Currently, Bishop Barron is creating a new documentary, Catholicism: The Pivotal Players that is in production and scheduled to be released in 2016.
Bishop Barron has published numerous books, essays, and articles on theology and the spiritual life, which appear frequently online and in numerous journals. Some of his books include:
· Thomas Aquinas: Spiritual Master (Crossroad, 1996)
· Bridging the Great Divide: Musings of a Post-Liberal, Post-Conservative, Evangelical Catholic (Sheed & Ward, 2004)
· The Priority of Christ: Toward a Post-Liberal Catholicism (Brazos, 2007)
· Word On Fire: Proclaiming the Power of Christ (Crossroad, 2008)
· Catholicism: A Journey to the Heart of the Faith (Image, 2011)

For more information or to purchase tickets for the October 22, 2015 award dinner, please contact Aquinas Institute of Theology at 314.256.8858 or or you can check out the Great Preacher Award Sponsor Packet






 The Dominican Emblem

The Dominican emblem is a dog with the torch of Truth in its mouth. Legend has it that when the mother of St. Dominic was pregnant she experienced a curious dream. In it she gave birth to a dog with a blazing torch in its mouth, signifying Dominic’s mission to set the world on fire with his preaching.

Great Preacher Award Recipients:

  • 2014 – Most Reverend Robert J. Shaheen
  • 2013 – Msgr. Michael E. Turek
  • 2012 – Most. Rev. J. Terry Steib, S.V.D.
  • 2011 – Rev. Mr. Dennis Chitwood
  • 2010 – Cardinal Francis George, O.M.I.
  • 2009 – Msgr. Vincent R. Bommarito
  • 2008 – Msgr. Patrick Hambrough 
  • 2007 – Father James A. Krings 
  • 2006 – Rev. Dale Wunderlich 
  • 2005 – Monsignor William A. Drennan 
  • 2004 – Rev. Joe Kempf
  • 2003 – Rev. Donald Wester
  • 2002 – Most Reverend Wilton D. Gregory
  • 2001 – Sister Joan Delaplane, O.P.
  • 2000 – Reverend Gary Braun
  • 1999 – Most Reverend Paul A. Zipfel
  • 1998 – Reverend John F. Kavanaugh, S.J.
  • 1997 – Monsignor James Telthorst
  • 1996 – Joseph Cardinal Bernadin
  • 1995 – Reverend James Cormack, C.M.