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Dominican Mission in Oxford

One of the joys of being a Dominican at Blackfriars is the range of people we encounter and the range of our apostolates we engage in. We are a community of about twenty friars and as well as our educational apostolate (University Hall and Studium) we have a public church and a priory in the centre of Oxford, one of the world’s most vibrant academic cities. Since we are friars who are dedicated to preaching the Word of God we aim to be of service wherever and whenever we can, to the local Church as well as to the national and international Church.

Here are some of our apostolates:


Liturgical, Sacramental and Congregation Life at Blackfriars

  • The public celebration of Mass, the Divine Office (Matins and Lauds, Midday Prayer and Vespers) throughout the week;
  • Our preaching at every Mass and on the internet;
  • Confessions available in the church on Saturdays and on request; 
  • Preparation of children for Confession, Holy Communion, Confirmation through the 9:30 Family Mass on Sundays; 
  • Instruction in the Faith for individuals wishing to become Catholics; 
  • Special events across the year (for example, Buffet Supper, Art Exhibition, Lenten talks on the Gospels);
  • Ministry to large groups for Young Adults, Teenagers and younger children (7-11’s);
  • Blackfriars supports the work of the Blackfriars Overseas Aid Trust (BOAT), a registered charity run by people who attend the 9.30 Family Mass on Sunday. BOAT raises about £40,000 per annum to support small-scale projects in the developing world. For further information, please click here. Donations are gratefully received, and can be made via the Priory. 


Educational and Forming the Next Generation

  • We run a Permanent Private Hall of the University of Oxford. Its Aquinas Institute fosters study of St Thomas Aquinas, while the Las Casas Institute promotes research on the relationship of faith to public life, with a focus on poverty, migration, dignity and human rights.
  • The Studium (Dominican study-house) teaches those preparing for ordination, and welcomes many lay students who wish to deepen their appreciation of the Faith. Most of the courses are open to the general public.
  • Blackfriars trains young friars in the English Dominican Province. 
  • We organise and teach at the Buckfast Theology Summer School for young
  • Friars teach at other institutions (e.g. the Maryvale Institute in Birmingham).


Faith-based groups

We provide chaplains and support to three regular faith-based groups that meet in the Priory:
  • The Lay Dominicans meet monthly to study and pray. They make commitment to share together a Dominican life adapted to life in the world. To find out more, please contact Fr David Sanders OP for information.
  • The Aquinas Reading Group offers young adults (18-35 years old) an opportunity to learn about and discuss their faith. It meets on Mondays in term time (and some Mondays besides) at 7.15 pm, to eat together, to study the theology of Aquinas in an informal setting, and to pray. For more information please contact Br Nicholas Crowe OP at studyweeks [at] 
  • BLEAT is a group for young teens (14-18yrs) that meets on Fridays evenings 8- 9.30pm during term. Mini BLEAT for 11-13 year olds meets on Fridays during term 6.30-8pm. For further information: prior.oxford[at]


Reaching out to the Wider Church

  • We help local parishes by saying Mass when the priests are away, and give retreats.
  • We raise money by preaching in parishes for the work of the Dominican friars in the Caribbean.
  • The Dominican students run a popular blog, Godzdogz
  • We provide chaplains to Student Cross.
  • Many Church groups use the priory as a venue for Mass and for talks/conferences.

News & Events

17th Oct
Register now for the 7th Anscombe Memorial Lecture

Cardinal Willem Jacobus Eijk, Archbishop of Utrecht
'Is Medicine Losing its Way? A firm foundation for medicine as a real therapeia'

15th Oct
Matriculation Michaelmas Term 2016

Congratulations to our new students who matriculated on Saturday.

10th Oct
Honorary Fellow of Blackfriars appointed as a Cardinal

On Sunday 9th October, Pope Francis appointed His Excellency The Most Reverend Joseph Tobin CSsR, Archbishop of Indianapolis, as one of seventeen new...

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