Blessed Mannes

Stained glass window from St. Dominic’s Church in Washington, D.C. Photo by Fr. Lawrence Lew, O.P.
Stained glass window from St. Dominic’s Church in Washington, D.C. Photo by Fr. Lawrence Lew, O.P.

The following reflection is part of an ongoing series about the life of St. Dominic & the Order of Friars Preachers.

Mannes (ca. 1170-1235), an older brother of Dominic, was contemplative and holy. He placed himself under his brothers guidance at least from the foundation of the Dominican Order and perhaps even much earlier. Mannes joined the Order and was known as a fervent preacher, virtuous in his habits, meek, humble, and kind. He later helped establish the priory of St. Jacques in Paris in 1217, and in 1219 he was entrusted with the care of the Dominican nuns at Madrid. After his death many miracles were attributed to his intercession. More is known about Mannes than Dominic’s other siblings. It is believed that Felix de Guzman and Jane of Aza had three sons and perhaps one daughter, for two of Dominic’s nephews also joined the Order. Dominic’s oldest brother, Anthony, was a diocesan priest in a hospice and devoted himself unreservedly to works of mercy in the service of the poor.

Fr. Lawrence Lew, O.P. (a member of the English Province) was invited by the Dominican Foundation to take pictures of some of the locations where our friars serve throughout the Northeast. During his time in Washington, D.C., Fr. Lew photographed the interior of the Church of St. Dominic. St. Dominic’s has been the church where our friars are ordained to the priesthood each May. Surrounding the church, is a collection of beautiful stained glass windows that chronicle the life of St. Dominic & the foundation of the Order of Preachers. Fr. Lew accomplished a great work by capturing the splendor of these windows, and in the process, the life of a towering saint.