You thought there were already enough online spiritual resources, but the Dominicans of the Thomistic Institute have another idea.
In this age of uncertainty, one thing’s for sure: there’s no shortage of resources on the internet for those seeking health information about COVID-19, reference material for students keeping up with their studies at home, and entertainment for those who are bored or need distraction from a constant stream of discouraging news.
The same goes for material for the spiritual seeker. After the public celebration of Mass was suspended to aid in social distancing during the pandemic, everyone from cathedrals to local parishes made sure the daily Mass was live-streamed throughout the day.
And if there’s anyone out there who believes we already have enough spiritual reading and lectures online, the Dominicans did not get that memo.
The Thomistic Institute, an initiative of the Order of Preachers, as the Dominicans are formally known, has started a project known as the Quarantine Lectures.
Noting that the most famous Dominican, the philosopher St. Thomas Aquinas, preached that God always brings good out of evil, the Washington, D.C.-based friars have begun llive-streaming lectures that they normally deliver or arrange on scores of college campuses nationwide and several abroad. And the subject matter speaks very much to the current public health crisis.
“We’ll keep it going until the quarantine is lifted,” they announced on their website, referring to the fact that colleges and universities across the country have sent their students home for the rest of the semester.
The friars, who are part of the Eastern U.S. Province of the worldwide order, offered a few carrots to get folks to subscribe to the Quarantine Lectures newsletter:
- Receive information on how to register for each Quarantine Lecture event, including post-lecture discussion groups.
- Get a free copy of the new TI prayer book, Prayers in Time of Plague.
- Actively participate in each lecture by asking live questions by video or chat, join post-lecture discussion groups, and participate in instant polling, via Zoom. Or just watch on YouTube Live or Facebook Live.
- Be automatically registered for a live-streaming Holy Week Retreat.
Upcoming episodes of the Quarantine Lectures include topics such as “Plagues: What We Can Learn from the Bible,” “The Presence of God in a Season of Solitude,” “A Catholic Guide to Passing Through Death to Eternal Life (Plus: What to Do When a Friend Is Dying),” and “Living a Life of Divine Worship (When You Cannot Go to Mass).”