Happy Feast of St. Catherine of Siena, Patroness of Third Order Dominicans and Doctor of the Church!
There is far too much to be said about this amazing woman, but here are a few bullet points:
- 25 March, 1347- 29 April, 1380. She died at the mystical age of 33.
- Second youngest of 24 or 25 children (all by the *same* father AND mother)
- Catherine vowed to give her life to God at the age of 6, when she received a special vision of Christ
- She was THIRD ORDER Dominican, not a nun. She belonged to a group of widow-sisters called the Mantellate, who almost did not allow her to join because she was not a widow.
- Her letters and political involvement helped bring Pope Gregory XI from Avignon back to Rome.
- During her life, Catherine worked many miracles, including the healing of those with plague and the conversion of many sinners.
- She had “secret” stigmata; she received the wounds of Christ during prayer and asked that these wounds remain hidden from sight. She bore these wounds for the rest of her life, but they only became visible to others upon her death
- Her “Dialogue” was not written by her hand, but was dictated to her friends and confessor while she was in a mystical trance.