Tuesday, August 8, 2017

St Dominic, Kind unto his Own, Severe with his Foes.

Today, the Church celebrates the feast of one of her great saints - Dominic de Guzmán. In his honor, I thought I'd let Dante offer up his praise. This in the singing verse translation by Laurence Binyon.
Therein was born the enthusiast amorous
     Of Christian faith, the saintly wrestler, kind
     Unto his own, severe unto his foes.
So charged, soon as created, was his mind,
     With quickening power, that in the womb it led
     His mother a prophetic tongue to find....
And that his name should with himself accord,
     They called him, prompted by a spirit from here,
     By the possessive of his only Lord.
Dominic was he named and I aver
     He was a husbandman chosen by Christ
     To tend his garden and be His helper there.
Messenger and familiar of Christ
     He showed him; for his love's first loyalties
     Clung to the first great counsel given by Christ.
Often, awake and silent on his knees,
     His nurse would find him on the floor, as who
     Should there be saying: 'I am come for this....'
A mighty teacher soon, he went his way
     About the vineyard to restore the vine
     Which, tended ill, fast withers and goes gray....
With doctrine and with will then, both endorsed
     With the apostolic office, forth he went
     Swift as a torrent from some high vein forced.
On stocks and stumps of heresy he spent
     His vehemence, most impetuously where
     Most stubborn was the opposed impediment. (Paradiso 11.55-102)

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