Today is the Feast Day of Saint Catherine of Siena
(born March 25, 1347 — died April 29, 1380)
Saint Catherine of Siena was born Caterina Benincasa in Tuscany, Italy, the twenty-fourth of twenty-five children. She experienced visions at an early age and, despite her parents objections, joined the Dominican tertiary and took the nun’s habit in 1365. She is one of the patron saints of Italy and a patron saint of Europe. Catherine died at the young age of thirty-three, canonized in 1461, and is celebrated as one of the greatest saints of the Catholic Church. Her writings, especially dictated in The Dialogue, a conversation between the soul and God, were so influential that she was the first woman and the first lay person to be named Doctor of the Church.
Be who God meant you to be and you will set the world ablaze.
– Saint Catherine of Siena
The Crucifix is an open book that all can read. The crucifix is an infinite declaration of love.”
St. Catherine of Siena
What does it mean to be a Doctor of the church?
In the Catholic tradition, a Doctor of the Church, is a saint whose doctrinal writings have special authority. In early Christianity there were four Latin (or Western) doctors of the church—Ambrose, Augustine, Gregory the Great, and Jerome—and three Greek (or Eastern) doctors—John Chrysostom, Basil the Great, and Gregory of Nazianzus. To these Eastern doctors Western Christianity adds Athanasius the Great. Since the 16th century dozens have been given the term doctor by proclamation of the Roman Catholic Church, among them Thomas Aquinas (1567), Bonaventure(1588), Anselm (1720), Leo I (1754), Bernard (1830), Francis of Sales (1877), the Venerable Bede (1899), Albertus Magnus (1931), Anthony of Padua (1946), Teresa of Ávila (1970), Catherine of Siena (1970), Thérèse of Lisieux (1997), and Hildegard (2012).
Saint Catherine of Siena, Doctor of the Church, pray for us.
Be not afraid! And may the peace of Christ be with you and your loved ones today and always. Holy Family, pray for us. Amen.