Sr. Mary Catherine Hilkert Honored by Aquinas Institute of Theology

Dominican Sister of Peace and Notre Dame Professor Named Great Preacher

Aquinas Board Chair, Dr. Daniel O’Brien, GPA recipient Sr. Mary Catherine Hilkert, OP, and Aquinas President Fr. Mark Wedig, OP, at the Aquinas Institute of Theology
Great Preachers Awards ceremony in St. Louis, MO.

St. Louis, MO – Dominican Sister of Peace Mary Catherine Hilkert, OP, a Professor of Theology at the University of Notre Dame and a former member of the faculty at Aquinas Institute of Theology, was awarded the Great Preacher Award by the Aquinas Institute of Theology in a November 11 ceremony held at the Institute and virtually.

A noted theologian and author, Sr. Catherine’s books include Naming Grace: Preaching and the Sacramental Imagination, Speaking with Authority: Catherine of Siena and the Voices of Women Today, and co-editor with Robert J. Schreiter of The Praxis of the Reign of God: An Introduction to the Theology of Edward Schillebeeckx. 

Currently, Sr. Catherine is working on a book titled Words of Spirit and Life: Theology, Preaching and Spirituality. She has also published numerous articles on contemporary theology, spirituality, and preaching.

A former president of the Catholic Theological Society of America (2005-2006), Sr. Catherine is the recipient of four honorary degrees (Providence College, Aquinas Institute of Theology, Oblate School of Theology, and Catholic Theological Union) as well as the Washington Theological Union’s Sophia Award for Theological Excellence in service of ministry, Barry University’s Yves Congar Award for Theological Excellence, the Veritas Award from the Dominican Colloquium on Higher Education, and the Ann O’Hara Graff Award from the Women’s Constructive Theology seminar of the Catholic Theological Society of America. Sr. Catherine has preached and offered lectures, workshops, and retreats in Catholic and ecumenical contexts in the United States, Canada, Ireland, The Netherlands, Australia, and South Africa.

Sr. Catherine Hilkert preaches at the Aquinas Institute of Theology Great Preachers Awards ceremony on November 11, 2021, in St. Louis, MO.

Sr. Catherine has also served on two international preaching commissions of the Order of Preachers.

Congregational Leadership team members Sisters Pat Twohill, Anne Lythgoe, and Gemma Doll, as well as Akron Sister Janet Schlichting joined Sr. Catherine as she received this prestigious award. 

Offering one of three tributes to Sr. Catherine and her ministry at the ceremony, Sr. Pat Twohill, Prioress of the Dominican Sisters of Peace, remarked, “Like our founder, St. Dominic, Sr. Cathy is a preacher of grace. Her witness, and her reception of this award, inspire us to recommit ourselves to the ministry of preaching the good news of Jesus Christ.”

In her words of gratitude for the award, Sr. Catherine expressed the hope that the church would recognize and celebrate the gifts of the many baptized women and lay men who share a call to preach the word of God as part of the church’s mission to spread the good news throughout all of creation.

Also honored at the awards ceremony was the late Father Ralph Siefert, SM.