Catherine of Siena: Reformer and Spiritual Teacher, 1380—Memorial 29 April
Today we honour Catherine Benincasa, who was a reformer and spiritual teacher in fourteenth century Italy.
Born at Siena in the year 1347, she devoted herself to prayer and meditation from a very early age. Her family opposed and harassed her, until her steadfast purpose wore them down and they let her became a postulant in the order of Dominican nuns. For several years she underwent a series of terrible visions and at times felt utterly abandoned by the Lord. This lonely struggle ended at nineteen, when she experienced a vision of the Saviour, with Mary and all the heavenly host, in which Christ espoused her to himself. Catherine became a nurse, caring for patients whom other nurses hated to treat, people with leprosy and cancer. In time she gathered a mixed group of disciples, and together with them she went on extensive tours to preach the gospel.
Soon afterwards she began another mission — this time, to heal a schism which had split the Church between two rival Popes, one at Rome and the other at the French city of Avignon. She went to Rome and publicly fasted, attending the Eucharist every day in order to pray for the unity of the Church. The strain of this last campaign proved too much for her and, felled by a stroke, she died on this date in 1380, at the age of thirty-three.
Collect:Everlasting God, you kindled such holy love in the heart of your servant Catherine that she devoted her life to the poor and the sick and to the peace and unity of your Church. Grant us strength to meditate upon the passion of your Son, that we may work in the image of his compassion until we rejoice in the revelation of his glory; who is alive and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.
Rector’s Corner: On behalf of St. Michael’s Open House Team, I would like to express my sincere appreciation to all our church volunteers who made this initiative a blessing to our neighborhood. My hope is that we would continue to be connected with the families who lived within the church vicinity.
To all our partners in mission, I pray that we would also continue to work together and make Jesus be known even more to this community.
For pastoral needs and concerns, please contact Natasha Kaweski at 604-591-8323 or at firstname.lastname@example.org
The 2018 Diocesan Mission Conference “Inside Out Church”will take place at Burnaby Mountain Secondary School, 8800 East Lake Drive. Saturday, May 26, 8am to 4pm. Programme begins at 9am. All members of the diocesan community are invited to participate. The keynote speaker will be preacher, teacher, writer and speaker, Lillian Daniel.