How then will they call on Him in whom they have not believed?
How will they believe in Him whom they have not heard?
And how will they hear without a preacher?
Since the founding of the Order of Preachers in 1216, Dominicans have had as their purpose preaching and the salvation of souls. We are dedicated to the preaching of the Gospel, to liturgical and personal prayer, to a shared life in community, and to life-long study. Our lives and our study directed toward the pursuit of Truth, whom we recognize as no other than the person of Our Lord Jesus Christ.
In seeking to know and love him, we strive to proclaim him to a world that longs for the salvation that he alone can give. Ours is a rich history with more than 70 saints and 200 men and women regarded as "blessed" who have served the Church through their preaching, their teaching, and their commitment to the poor and those on the margins of our world.
The Order of Preachers, or the Dominican Order as it is more commonly known, is a Catholic religious order founded by St. Dominic in 1216 for preaching and the salvation of souls. The Order consists of cloistered nuns, laity, and friars who together with the active sisters form the Dominican family. Those who are male religious, or "friars," nourish their preaching through liturgical prayer, a shared community life, and lifelong study, Like other religious they take vows of poverty, chastity, and obedience, but also have a special devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary and to the rosary. There are more than 6000 friars serving in more than 100 countries around the world. The successor to St. Dominic, called the Master of the Order, lives at Santa Sabina in Rome.
The website for the universal Order is https://www.op.org/
With its proud 800 year-old tradition of preaching and teaching, the Order of Preachers in the United States is divided into four geographic regions, or provinces. The Province of St. Albert the Great in the central part of the country serves primarily the people of the Midwest through preaching, teaching, and the promotion of justice and peace. Our headquarters are located in Chicago, Illinois. The Province of St. Albert the Great sponsors Aquinas Institute of Theology.
One of the four Dominican provinces, or geographic regions of the United States, the Province of St. Martin de Porres serves the Church in the southern part of our country. The friars of the Southern Province address the needs of people in every stratum of society – rich and poor, young and old, all walks of life through their parishes, campus ministries, and teaching and preaching apostolates. Together with the Central Province, the Southern Province has a responsibility for Aquinas Institute as its center of institutional studies. Our headquarters are in New Orleans, Louisiana.
From the earliest days of the Order, lay men and women have been an intrinsic part of the Dominican family, who have come together to share in the Dominican mission of preaching and teaching. The Lay Dominicans make promises to follow The Rule of the Lay Chapters of St. Dominic even as they fulfill the demands of ordinary family life and their secular professions. The Dominican Laity includes many saints, such as St. Catherine of Siena, St. Rose of Lima, Blessed Margaret of Costello, and Blessed Pier Giorgi Frassati.
Before he established the friars, St. Dominic founded a contemplative community of women in 1206. These cloistered sisters, or nuns, devote themselves to a life of prayer and are the spiritual heart of the Order. Although they live apart from the world in monasteries, through their lives of prayer, study, and contemplation, they intercede with God each day on behalf of the whole world, and in a special way they pray for their brothers and sisters who actively preach the Gospel.
Members of the Dominican family include active sisters. Over the centuries, our Dominican sisters have lived their vows in an active ministry, serving others in the world. They dedicate themselves to private prayer and liturgical worship, regular study, and an active apostolate. Each community or congregation of Dominican sisters has a particular mission for which it was founded, ranging from educating the young, to caring for the sick, and to serving in the foreign missions, while still living the Dominican charism of preaching.