In this Jubilee Year of the Order of Preachers, I am happy to present this publication of a selection of about fifty chants particularly dear to the tradition of the Order. I am very grateful to the International Liturgical Commission of the Order for having prepared this edition with such great care.
Not long after its confirmation (1216), the Order benefited from the decision of Humbert of Romans, then Master of the Order, to promote the establishment of a common liturgy for the whole Order (1254). In this way a fundamental characteristic of the vocation of the Order was affirmed: to root its mission of preaching in a rich choral life, contemplative and liturgical. Since this time, the celebration, the listening, and the study of the Word of God have together bourn and nourished the preaching of this Word. This attentiveness of the Master of Order Humbert of Romans manifests, in my view, two constitutive elements of the “holy preaching” that Dominic wished to place at the service of the Church. On the one hand, this rooting in liturgical prayer was essential for the unity of life for each brother and each community. On the other hand, vowed to itinerant preaching, according to the mode of Jesus the Preacher, it was suitable for giving to the brothers the conditions necessary foster unity among all the communities.