The Wallace Family (left to right) with Fr. Giles Dimock, O.P. in the center: Theresa, Tom, Stephen, Meta (Stephen’s wife, they were married two weeks after graduation), Sally and Mary.
“We are really Dominicans! We are so excited to be part of the Dominican family,” proclaimed Mrs. Sally Wallace, a benefactor, along with her husband, of the Province of St. Joseph. The enthusiasm of her voice radiated the entire room via speakerphone. Diana Kilarjian, the the Dominican Friars’s Director of Planned Giving, called to thank the Wallaces for including the Dominican Friars in their will and to welcome them to the Saint Dominic Legacy Society; but the real focus was a “personal recap” of how the Wallaces “fell in love” with the Dominicans, and entered the order.
All eight of their children graduated from Franciscan University of Steubenville, and it was in this thriving Franciscan center that the seeds of their Dominican vocations were planted. The sower was a Dominican Friar and Chair of Theology at the university, Fr. Giles Dimock, O.P. He befriended their entire family, and, in time, invited them to become Dominicans. For the record, he celebrated the wedding Masses of four of their married sons.
Their next step was to join the Pius V Chapter of the Lay Fraternities of St. Dominic. She expressed their gratitude for the authentic community, Liturgy of the Hours, rigorous study, and the time-proven tradition of 800 years of preaching the Good News.
Mrs. Wallace recalled their being invited to pray Vespers at the Dominican House of Studies. She said, “With over sixty friars, from seminarians to elderly priests, the experience was simply awe-inspiring.” She also gave high praise for Fr. Paul Murray’s The New Wine of Dominican Spirituality, the first book they read after joining the Lay Dominicans. She added, “The joy of Dominican life really attracted us.”
When Mrs. Wallace and her husband, Tom, sought Fr. Giles’ counsel regarding their will, he suggested that they might want to designate a portion of their estate for the education of Dominican seminarians. She recalled, “Our hearts were already there.” As her husband said, “Contact with many young Dominican priests, from the House of Studies to the March for Life to World Youth Day, convinced us that there was no nobler cause we could support.”
It is this forward thinking generosity of our benefactors, who choose to align their own legacy with that of the 800 year legacy of the Dominican Order, that makes possible the rock-solid formation and education of this and future generations of Dominican Friars. Thank you!