Very Rev. Kenneth Raymond Letoile, O.P. Elected Prior Provincial of Dominican Province of St. Joseph by Provincial Chapter Delegates at Providence College
Providence, RI – Very Rev. Kenneth Raymond Letoile, O.P. was elected Prior Provincial of the Dominican Province of St. Joseph during the Provincial Chapter meeting recently held at Providence College. His election on June 13, was confirmed by the Master of the Order, Most Rev. Bruno Cadoré, O.P., and is effective immediately. Father Letoile has served as the Prior of the Dominican House of Studies since 2011.
Elected to a four-year term, Father Letoile succeeds the Very Rev. Brian Martin Mulcahy, O.P., who served as Provincial since 2010. According to the Constitutions of the Dominican Order, the primary duties of the Prior Provincial are to promote “the authentic spirit and life of the Order” in his province; to keep “the common good of the Order very much at heart;” and to “promote cooperation between the province and the hierarchy and between the province and other religious families so that the needs of the local Church may be understood better and provided for more satisfactorily.”
Fr. Letoile was born and raised in St. Pius V parish, Providence, R.I. He is a graduate of the parish grade school and of La Salle Academy. He entered the Order of Preachers in 1967, and earned his Bachelor of Arts degree at Providence College in 1970. Fr. Letoile went on to study at the Pontifical Faculty of the Immaculate Conception (Washington, D.C.), and he was ordained to the priesthood in 1974. He completed his S.T.L. in 1975.
Fr. Letoile has 36 years of pastoral service in Dominican parishes, including: St. Ann, Kingstree, S.C. (1975-1978); Sacred Heart, Jersey City, N.J. (1978-1989), St. Pius V, Providence, R.I. (1989-1998, 2008-2011) and St. Gertrude, Cincinnati, Ohio (1998-2008). In 2011 he was elected prior at the Dominican House of Studies. He became the Director of Pastoral Field Education for the Pontifical Faculty of the Immaculate Conception in July, 2012. He has served the Province of St. Joseph as vocation director and as a member of the provincial council. His pastoral interests include evangelization, effective parish leadership and the relationship of the Dominican vocation to parochial life.
The Order of Preachers, commonly known as the Dominicans, was founded in Southern France in 1216 by St. Dominic de Guzman. The Order is dedicated to the proclamation of the Word of God for the salvation of souls. The Dominican way of life consists of the vows of poverty, chastity, and obedience, and attends to study as the basis for preaching. Dominican friars live in community, gathering each day for common prayer. There are over 6,000 Dominican friars worldwide.
The Dominican Province of St. Joseph (the Eastern Dominican Province), is based in New York City and was established in 1805. Its almost 300 members are engaged in parish ministry, foreign missions, campus ministry, retreat work, and education. The Province of St. Joseph operates Providence College in Rhode Island.