Tertiary Benedictine or Dominican?


Hello, I felt called to attend a small presentation on secular orders at my local parish recently where people from four different orders (Benedictines, Discalced Carmelites, Secular Franciscans, and Dominicans) gave presentations on their history and daily life, of the four I felt a pull to the Benedictines and the Dominicans; obviously I know I can choose only one.

For the Benedictines “ora et labora” seems a fantastic code to live by, and I must say I feel a certain pull towards their medal; I do not know why.

For the Dominicans; from their website on their four pillars (study in particular):

To discern if you are called to become a Dominican, consider whether the following things describe you: you love to study and are a motivated learner; you long to read more and know more about the life of Christ and the Church, and you cannot contain your desire to share the fruits of your study with others; you prefer good literature that contains universal truths; you appreciate the many avenues through which truth can be taught, whether it be literature, science, theater, or visual art.

If these items describe you, then you might prayerfully consider whether Christ is calling you to enter more fully into your life of faith through the Fraternities of St. Dominic.

This describes me to a “t”!

The prayer aspects of both are the same, and I can (like anyone I guess) always use more prayer in my daily life…lately I feel I’ve been slipping into the rut of being a Sunday only Christian. :frowning:

If it helps anyone give me some helpful info I’m a super busy father of four young children willing to make the time to become a better follower of Christ.

Sorry if this rambled a bit!


I appreciate the enormous insight of the Benedictines about human psychology: it’s very difficult to really get things done, if you’re allowed to lounge around. And people can generally get more things done if put on regular schedules: in fact, as an adult we are moved to seek regular schedules!

The Dominican charism includes study. . . but it is study for a definitely practical purpose.

You’re no Dominican if all you do is study. It has to be done as part of the Great Commission: spreading the Word, spreading the Gospel. This is a teaching function that naturally wants to spring from the study aspect of the Dominican charism.

I rather see Dominicans as being akin to Jesuits, although a bit more classically-minded.


Just to be precise, the Bennies are not a Third Order. They are Oblates attached to a particular monastery.:slight_smile:


See? I need as much info as I can get. :smiley:


Hahaha! :smiley:

The OFS’ (Secular Franciscan) superior general is an OFS. I believe that they are the only order where this is the case. The others have a religious as a superior general.
Yah, I know: pretty “inside baseball”, esoteric stuff.


One of the best things to do when considering a judgment like so is to read about and to pray to those saints who were either tertiaries, Benedictines, or Dominicans.

So among Benedictines, consider St. Gertrude the Great. Among Dominican tertiaries consider St. Catherine of Siena, Bl. Osanna of Mantua, Bl. Lucy Brocadelli, Bl. Catherine of Racconigi, and St. Catherine of Ricci. Among other tertiaries, consider the Franciscan tertiaries St. Angela of Foligno, St. Catherine of Genoa, and St. Mary Frances of the Five Wounds, and the Trinitarian tertiary Bl. Anna Maria Taigi.

God bless.


st benedict medals are good for anyone to have. attend meetings of the two groups you’re attracted to, and see which one pulls the hardest on your heart and soul.



As Luigi mentioned, Benedictine Oblates are attached to a particular Abbey or Priory. As “stability” is a Benedictine virtue (and vow), are you permanently located where you are? Are you happy with the Benedictine (male or female) who would be the Oblate director in your locale? Are you fed by the liturgical style and practice there? Would your status as an Oblate of a particular house be possible if you move because of career or other obligations? As a Dominican Tertiary, you are not tied to a single house.


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