“Live, pray and celebrate in dignity and beauty!”
In the early years of the 20th century, a dream was already forming in the mind of Blessed James Alberione and subsequently he would found our Congregation, Disciples of the Divine Master, specifically for the ministry of promoting dignity and beauty in the liturgy.
In appreciation of the great Benedictine centres of liturgy throughout Europe, he saw a need for centres of diffusion to provide all that is required for the worthy celebration of the liturgy.
“All that the Church teaches can also be said with works, with facts, through painting, with sculpture, with the construction of churches and with all that which is directly liturgy. Your apostolate is vast. When a painting represents a dogma, then it is clear that it is a sermon in itself!”
(Bl. J. Alberione)
These centres of diffusion, more commonly known as Liturgical Centres, continue today to be a link for the sisters with the public, an information point on liturgical matters for the laity, as well as a welcoming and renowned retail venue of liturgical goods for the clergy and parishes in an atmosphere of liturgical beauty. In Ireland, all this is complimented by the Chapel of Adoration adjacent to the Centre which invites people to pray before the Blessed Sacrament. The faithful are drawn into the world of Christ not only by their faith or by strict symbols but also by the beauty of the church, its sacred atmosphere, the splendour of its furnishings, the rhythm of the liturgical texts and by the sublimity of its sacred music.
Throughout the years the sisters have been involved in designing and furnishing chapels in nursing homes, hospitals and schools. They make vestments and altar linen, liturgical banners and do some statue repair. Embroidery, painting, sculpture, card making and design, carving, needlework, sewing are all crafts used by the sisters. This is in addition to preparing commissioned works of arts including traditional paintings and banners. They render liturgical service in terms of formation, catechesis, biblical-liturgical animation and publications in view of contributing to the growth of the liturgical life of the people of God. In other parts of the world, the Sister Disciples of the Divine Master work in the field of architecture , church and chapel restoration, music, metal-work, stained glass, ceramic, alabaster, stone work, mosaicery and iconography.
All this is in fidelity to the mandate of the Church: “Things set apart for use in divine worship should be worthy, becoming, and beautiful, signs and symbols of things supernatural” (SC 22). It is our prayer as Disciples of the Divine Master, at the service of the liturgy, that we may always continue, searching the signs of the times, to create, produce, and diffuse and embrace the vastness of this wonderful apostolate to bring the message of hope and salvation to all.
Liturgical Centres are located at 8 Castle Street, Athlone and White’s Cross, Blackrock, Co.Dublin.