The 25th child of a wool dyer in northern Italy, St. Catherine started having mystical experiences when she was only 6, seeing guardian angels as clearly as the people they protected. She became a Dominican tertiary when she was 16, and continued to have visions of Christ, Mary, and the saints. St. Catherine was one of the most brilliant theological minds of her day, although she never had any formal education. She persuaded the Pope to go back to Rome from Avignon, in 1377, and when she died she was endeavoring to heal the Great Western Schism. In 1375 Our Lord give her the Stigmata, which was visible only after her death. Her spiritual director was Blessed Raymond of Capua. St, Catherine’s letters, and a treatise called “a dialogue” are considered among the most brilliant writings in the history of the Catholic Church. She died when she was only 33, and her body was found incorrupt in 1430.
The Lord said in the Gospel that blessed are the pure of heart for they shall see God. We must preserve the purity of life. For by this we can see the Lord’s ways and respond to His call of holiness in the spirit of promptness and docility.
Father, in meditating on the sufferings of Your Son and in serving Your Church, Saint Catherine was filled with the fervor of Your love. By her prayers, may we share in the mystery of Christ’s death and rejoice in the revelation of his glory, for He lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, forever and ever. Amen.