The Vocations Office Invites Discerners to The Dormer House
The Dormer house, named after Henry Edward Dormer, is a residence for Catholic men (18 and older), who are seeking to discern their state of life vocation in a context of prayer, fraternity and service. Fr. Patrick Beneteau, Director of Vocations and seminarians also reside at the Dormer house, located on Regent St. (near St. George St.) in London. The house, which includes a chapel, is in walking distance from the University of Western Ontario, King’s University College and St. Peter’s Seminary, and has a capacity for four residents. Residents can remain at the Dormer house for a period of one to two years in order to make an informed decision about their vocation; during this time they may be working or studying at a post-secondary institution. A monthly rental fee covers room and board and other formational activities. Interested candidates should contact Fr. Patrick at firstname.lastname@example.org or 519-324-7531 for more information.
Who is Henry Edward Dormer?
Henry Edward Dormer was born in Warwickshire, England, and after studies in Europe and in Ireland, made a retreat at age 19 under Father Rudolph Suffield, a Dominican friar, an event which apparently changed his outlook on life. Stationed with the King’s Own Royal Rifles in London, Upper Canada, (now London, Ontario) in 1866 during the era of the Fenian Raids, Dormer is reputed to have led a life of selfless devotion to God, attending to the needs of the poor, sick and elderly of the colonial garrison town. Dormer bestowed money, clothing, food and other necessities to those in need, and gave religious instruction to children and soldiers, if they requested it, all the while wrestling with the question of his own possible vocation to the priesthood. Dormer contracted typhoid fever and died on 2 October 1866, the feast of the Guardian Angels, just as he had decided to enter the Dominican novitiate. As word of Dormer’s death spread contemporary newspaper accounts reported “the saint is dead.” A plaque in Henry Edward’s honour is located at St. Peter’s Cathedral Basilica, London. He is held as a local example of how growing in holiness assists us in the discernment of our vocation.
The Dormer House Chapel.