Order of Preachers
The Dominican Friars were founded by St Dominic, a Spaniard, in 1216. They are a religious order with the title ‘Order of Preachers,’ to preach Faith, at first against the Albigensian heresy in the South of France. They spread rapidly throughout Europe, with missions to Iraq and India and strongly established in Armenia. With the discovery of the new world, they were established throughout Spanish America. At the same time, the Portuguese were particularly strong in Mozambique and India. Other major missions were in Philippines, Indonesia, China, Vietnam.
No friars worked in New Zealand until the twentieth century: Englishmen came first, then the Dominican sisters got the Irish Dominicans in Australia to make preaching visits, and finally in 1949 houses were founded – in Dunedin building Aquinas Hall, in Auckland teaching theology at Loretto Hall.