Traditions with a “Little t”

Catholics have two kinds of tradition – big “T” Traditions and little “t” traditions. Big “T” Tradition refers to the deposit of faith handed down through in the Church from the time of the Apostles until now, like the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Little “t” traditions are those that are handed down from man and have some sort of symbolic meaning for a group of people or specific community. Here at St. Dominic Priory, we have lots of little “t” traditions. (We, of course, love the big “T” Traditions of the Church too!)

Two of our most celebrated little “t” traditions happen during our Winter Break from classes. Each year the St. Dominic Community takes some time away at a local retreat center for prayer, community time, relaxation and fun. The agenda for our days normally includes a spiritual conference. This year we were privileged to have Fr. David Meconi, S.J. speak to us about the virtue of charity in the thought of St. Augustine. The brothers also spend our free time reading, relaxing in a row of rocking chairs, or sitting by the fire place.

Br. Samuel and other friars read during our community retreat.

Our other favorite holiday tradition is our yearly Tree Trimming party. Our student brothers in their first year of studies get the Christmas tree, plan the entertainment and, of course, prepare delicious snacks. The Tree Trimming party is a time for the community to come together to decorate our Priory and enjoy one another’s company as we prepare to the celebrate the Feast of Christmas.

Br. Vincent decorates the Priory’s Christmas tree.