Identity & Mission
The Dominican Sisters of the Immaculate Conception's ministry focuses on Christian education and care of the elderly and sick, as well as helping the poor around the globe. The sisters have a typical day that includes meditation, Mass, Holy Hours of Eucharistic Adoration and Benediction and Mass, Divine Office, Mass, Holy Hours of Eucharistic Adoration and Benediction, Mass, Holy Hours of Eucharistic Affirmation and Benediction, rosary and spiritual reading. They also do apostolic work. The apostolic work includes teaching, facilitating retreats and caring for the elderly.
The Dominicans, also known as "Order of Preacher), adhere to the motto of "contemplareet comtemplata tradere". This Latin translation means "contemplate and give thanks for the fruits of contemplation". St. Dominic founded them in the 13th Century. They were founded by St. Dominic in the 13th century.
The religious institutions have certain common practices, including community prayer (primarily, the Divine Office), work, prayer, meditation, prayer, study and finally religious vows (typically the vows of biblical counsels; poverty and chastity) The formation process can be divided into five stages: novice, observant/aspirant and postulant. The discernment process continues until solemn vows are made.
A typical day for a religious community would look something like this: 5:00 AM, Rise 5:30AM, Office of Readings/ Morning Prayer(Lauds), 6:30 AM Holy Mass, Breakfast (with spiritual readings) 10:30 AM, Lunch (with Vespers) 2:30 PM and Dinner (with Vespers) 3:30 PM, Vespers/ Siesta 4:30PM, Meditation 6:00 PM. Private Study 7:30 PM. Supper/ Free time 8:30 PM, Night prayer (Compline), 9:30 PM. Lights Out
More contemplative institutes (e.g. Benedictines tend to devote more time to community prayer, and to have a more structured schedule. The Dominicans are more active and devote more time to apostolates (serving the community in some way). No matter whether they are contemplative, active, or both, all religious communities share the same heart of life: prayer and the dedication to living a life that is self-conversion and renunciation in order to the sanctification and growth of the Church. Every religious community shares a common breath of prayer. They all recite the same Divine Office every single day.
Active institutes are perhaps better labeled "active-contemplative." They are those, such as the Franciscans, Dominicans, Missionaries of Charity, etc., who tend to have more worldly interaction compared with contemplative orders. Saint Thomas Aquinas believed that active-contemplative religious orders were the best form of religious life. Saint Francis of Assisii said that one can't be anywhere without having "a little dust on his shoulders". These orders should be vigilant. The more one gets closer to the world, then the greater chance he will be sucked in and become a slave to its flesh rather than the spirit. Dominicans take inspiration from St. Paul who advised the faithful to pray in the Spirit at all times, and with all prayer, and supplication. Keep alert and persevere, making supplication to all saints and for me, in opening my mouth to proclaim the mystery, for which I am an ambassador with chains. Prayer is the only way to convert.
Mother Maria Rose Columba Bialecka founded the Dominican Sisters of the Immaculate Conception in 1861. Born in eastern Poland on August 23, 1838. Mother Bialecka used her natural and supernatural talents to follow her heart. She entered the novitiate in Nancy, France of the Dominican Sisters at the age 19 to receive her religious training. Soon after taking her first religious vows she returned to Poland to establish the Congregation of Dominican Sisters in Poland.
Mother Bialecka was very concerned about her countrymen's needs, especially their struggle with poverty. The founding of a network parochial schools, where both children and adults could learn how to read, write, understand and contribute to the Catholic faith, was her first step in her mission of charity. Her burning desire was to see society's poorest and sickest receive material and sacramental help from the Church. She longed for them to be able to recognize their dignity and have a relationship with God.
Mother Bialecka was the first Dominican Convent to be established in Poland, in 1861. In 1861, Mother Bialecka founded the first Dominican Convent in Poland.
For entry into the congregation, the applicant must be between 18 and 35 years old, have a high-school diploma, be in good mental, physical and emotional health, as well as have a letter of recommendation from a pastor or spiritual director.
The areas where you can find the order
They are present in 8 countries, on 4 continents, and have been serving the Church in North America since 1980. There are also other convents of Dominican sisters of the Immaculate Conception North America in Justice, Illinois (Provincial House); Milwaukee, Arkansas; Calgary, Alberta, Canada. They also have mission houses and convents in Poland, Italy Cameroon and Russia.