Patron of Astronomers
St. Dominic, a native of Calarogan in Old Castile, Spain, was of the illustrious house of the Guzmans. At the age of fourteen he was sent to the schools of Valencia, which were soon after transferred to Salamanca. Having finished his education, he received the habit of the Regular Canons of St. Augustine in the diocese of Osma. Devoting himself with ardor to the work of his own sanctification, he also labored for the salvation of others by preaching the Word of God.
The Saint accompanied his Bishop on a mission imposed by Alphonsus IX, King of Castile. In France they became acquainted with ravages of the Albigensian heresy. Both the Bishop and his companion proceeded to Rome, where they obtained permission from Innocent III to preach the Gospel among the heretics. They now began to labor with great zeal. To provide for the education of children, St. Dominic established a convent of nuns at Prouille, which became the nucleus of the Order of Dominican nuns. St. Dominic succeeded the Bishop of Osma as superior of the missions in Languedoc. Together with several companions of his labors, he laid the foundations of his Order, the Rules of which were approved by Pope Honorius III in 1216.
Some time later, the Pope created the office of Master of the Sacred Palace, or the Pope's domestic theologian, and St. Dominic was the first to fill it. The active life of the Saint was spent in traveling for the interests of God and His church, preaching the Gospel, lecturing on Theology and establishing houses of his Order, which, even during his lifetime, made great progress and of which Honorius III, in 1220, made him General. His saintly life was happily terminated at Bologna, Italy, August 6, 1221, and he was canonized in 1234 by Pope Gregory IX. The Saint was one of the first popularizers of the Rosary and made great use of it in achieving converts.
PRAYER: God, let St. Dominic help Your Church by his merits and teaching. May he who was an outstanding preacher of truth become a most generous intercessor for us. Amen.