You may have an image in your mind of Saint Dominic traveling from place to place preaching the Gospel and winning over skeptical hearts for Jesus. The following is Father Bill Garrott’s account of the work he does, which closely mirrors Saint Dominic’s method of going town to town. Your support is crucial in empowering him to preach and he’s eager to share with you good news from his journey!
The Life of an Itinerant Preacher
By Father Bill Garrott, O.P.
My own itinerant ministry is aimed not at the typically devout parishioner who attends any spiritual event the parish offers, but rather at the lukewarm Catholic who rarely if ever connects to the parish beyond Sunday Mass. Because I work my musical abilities on guitar and piano into my preaching, I crisscross the country by car in order to bring my instruments with me. Our culture is saturated in entertainment. I think the Holy Spirit uses my musical talent to reach into people’s hearts through the back door, as it were. Music is the catalyst by which hearts are softened and made permeable to the Word of God, which alone brings about our conversion.
Success is hard to measure because the itinerant preacher, by definition, moves from one parish to another and therefore has no on-going connection to parishes where he has preached. One measure for success is the number of confessions and in particular those who return after not confessing for many years. In one parish I heard confessions for over 13 hours over the course of three days – 218 confessions to be exact!
One of the highpoints for me comes at the closing: I often receive spontaneous applause when I mention that we have over 60 young men in formation. I invite attendees to assist us in the formation of these zealous young Friars through their generous donations. Your prayers and support give the sons of Saint Dominic the opportunity to find new and varied ways to follow in Saint Dominic’s footsteps. Thank you!