Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

St. Catherine of Siena: model for the faithful

CWN - November 24, 2010

Pope Benedict XVI offered St. Catherine of Siena as a model for the faithful, at his regular weekly public audience on November 24.

Speaking to about 7,000 people in the Paul VI auditorium, the Pontiff noted that St. Catherine (1347- 1380)—who is now revered as a Doctor of the Church and co-patron of Europe—developed a wide reputation for sanctity very early in her life. Many people sought her advice, and “she became intensely active in the spiritual counseling of many categories of peoples: nobles, politicians, artists, common people, consecrated persons, ecclesiastics, and even Pope Gregory XI.”

St. Catherine was not afraid to identify abuses in the Church and call for reform. But the Pope observed that “though aware of the human failings of the clergy, she always had the greatest reverence for them, because through the Sacraments and the Word they dispense the salvific power of the Blood of Christ.”

The great saint also had the “gift of tears,” indicating an unusual sensitivity of conscience and a depth of compassion, the Pope remarked. He reminded his audience that Jesus wept openly at the death of his friend Lazarus.

Pope Benedict summarized the spirituality of St. Catherine of Siena with the observation: “For her, Christ was as a bridegroom with whom she maintained a relationship of intimacy, communion and fidelity.” The Pope suggested: “Like the saint of Siena, all believers feel the need to conform themselves to the sentiments of Christ's Heart, in order to love God and neighbor as Christ Himself loves.”

Additional sources for this story
Some links will take you to other sites, in a new window.

An appeal from our founder, Dr. Jeffrey Mirus:

Dear reader: If you found the information on this page helpful in your pursuit of a better Catholic life, please support our work with a donation. Your donation will help us reach five million Truth-seeking readers worldwide this year. Thank you!

Progress toward our April expenses ($26,326 to go):
$35,000.00 $8,674.48
75% 25%
Sound Off! CatholicCulture.org supporters weigh in.

All comments are moderated. To lighten our editing burden, only current donors are allowed to Sound Off. If you are a donor, log in to see the comment form; otherwise please support our work, and Sound Off!

Show 1 Comments? (Hidden)Hide Comments
  • Posted by: koinonia - Nov. 25, 2010 3:05 AM ET USA

    An absolutely astonishing example to each of us, St. Catherine easily makes my top 5 list of the Church's greatest saints. Pound for pound, one of the most dynamic and influential persons of all time, she exhibited that remarkably well-directed combination of will and intellect -accompanied by faith, hope and love- which inevitably moved mountains. Her words and actions resound through the ages.

Subscribe for free
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Recent Catholic Commentary

Improving the Church 6 hours ago
Smaller Church, Bigger Faith, 2: The Impact of Grace 8 hours ago
Smaller Church, Bigger Faith? The Problem of the New Evangelization April 14
Significant Items on the Verge of Holy Week April 11
How same-sex marriage erodes personal freedom and enhances state power April 11

Top Catholic News

Most Important Stories of the Last 30 Days