FATHER BARTHOLOMEW HUTCHERSON, O.P. is a Roman Catholic Priest and a Friar of the Dominican Province of the Most Holy Name of Jesus in the Western USA. For more than 30 years, he has been very committeed to working with the young Church. Prior to entering the Dominicans, he worked as a lay Youth Minister. Most notably at St. Bartholomew's Parish in San Mateo, CA. One thing that attracted him to the Western Dominican Province was its commitment to work in university ministry. He saw that ministry as a natural extension of the work he had done with Catholic Youth. During his initial formation, "Brother Bart" continued working in high school ministry. But beginning with his ministry residency at the Newman Center at the University of Washington in Seattle (1994-95), he made the switch to university ministry. Since ordination, most of his pastoral assignments have been at Newman Centers or university parishes served by the Western Province: St. Catherine's Newman Center at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City (1997-2001), St. Thomas Aquinas Newman Center at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas (2001-2003), and St. Thomas More Catholic Newman Center at the University of Arizona in Tucson (2004-2014).
After a Sabbatical year (2014-15) spent in Israel and Spain, he was assigned to Holy Rosary Parish in Antioch California (2015-2018). In July 2018, he began a new phase of ministry as a member of Western Dominican Preaching, a team of itinerant preachers who take the Gospel far and wide offering retreats, parish missions, and special programs for evangelization.
Fr. Bart's ministerial focus has been creating a Church hospitable to young Catholics and encouraging of the gifts that they are and bring to the Church. He sees University Ministry as vital to preparing young men and women to be faithful in their adult lives, their relationships, and their post-university professional lives. Community building, Leadership formation and Faith-based ethics have formed the core of his pastoral ministry to young people.
Scripture and Christian history are passions for Fr. Bart and he believes that those two avocations form an excellent basis for preaching ministry. In addition to his preaching activities, Fr. Bart also organizing pilgrimages and hopes to increase this part of his ministry in the future.
Contact Fr. Bart
I am a preacher...
I was Ordained to the Roman Catholic Priesthood on May 31, 1997 (Last Century!). But I was not ordained in just anyway, I was ordained a DOMINICAN Priest. Which means, above all else, I was ordained a Preacher.
Yes, non-Dominican priests preach. But for the Dominican, it is our Identifying ministry. We are THE Order of Preachers. We bear that badge proudly as two simple letters we sign after our name: “O.P.“ Ordo Praedicatorum, the Order of Preachers. I AM A PREACHER.
In that moment I felt assured of a vocation to the priesthood (25 years ago), I had the luxury of time deciding exactly how I would pursue that vocation. I looked at a lot of different “routes” to the priesthood and, in the end, discovered a call not only to priesthood, but to religious life. I had great direction from wise and holy people who helped me discernthat vocation. It seemed, given my personality and commitment to the WORD, that the Preaching Friars would be a good fit for me. Ultimately I threw my lot in with them. Formation was not always easy. There were certainly moments when I and those responsible for my formation questioned whether it was a good fit. But in the end, they took the risk. I took the risk. And I made a lifelong commitment to be Preaching Friar.
Most of my priesthood, I have ministered on university campuses. That is my specific job, but I do that job as a PREACHER. What does it mean for me and my Dominican Brothers that, regardless of our particular ministry, we approach it as preachers?
Above all it means that we are men of the WORD. Every Dominican must be firmly rooted in the Word, because what we must preach is the Word – especially the Word Made Flesh. If our preaching is not firmly rooted in the Word, we preach something not worthy of our time, our energy, or the title of Preacher.
The Preacher is rooted in an 800 year tradition of theological study and commentary. The Preacher has an ear firmly pressed to the rails of contemporary culture. The Preacher engages the contemporary world fearlessly with full confidence that God is as much at work in the world today as he was in the times of Creation, the time of the Patriarchs, the Prophets, Jesus, the Apostles, the Martyrs and Saints and at the Foundation of the Order in the Middle Ages.
The Preacher is a man of community whose preaching reflects the life of that community and his dependence on that community. This may be his local community or the Community of the Church Universal. Community provides rootedness and calls the Preacher to accountability.
The Preacher is a man of Compassion and Mercy. His Preaching points to the remarkable Mercy of God and invited his brothers and sisters to encounter that Mercy in Word, in Sacrament, in Church, in himself, the Preacher, and in the World.
The Preacher is a man of Truth. The Preaching is at the service of that most basic human desire for knowledge. Each human being longs to know, hungers for truth. The Preacher must be the waiter who brings satisfaction to that longing.
The Preacher is a man of prayer. Preaching must be fueled by constant contact with the one who gives the Word. In the Eucharist, in our communal Office, in private reflection and contemplation, the Preacher is equipped to give to the world, that for which the world longs: connection to God.
I am not merely a priest. I AM A PREACHER. May God always fill my heart with His Spirit so that I am driven to bring His Word to others, not as a blunt instrument, but as invitation to Grace.
Holy Father Dominic, Pray For us.