On this beautiful feast of the glorious virgin, doctor, and stigmatist, St. Catherine of Siena, I offer a re-post of an article which I wrote during my first months of blogging in 2011. It was inspired by St. Catherine’s exquisite prayer to the Trinity, which is printed below this post.
An excellent biography on St. Catherine is Catherine of Siena, by Sigrid Undset, Ignatius Press.
But Catherine’s own exquisite spiritual classic, dictated while she was in ecstasy, is called The Dialogue, and contains her extraordinary conversations with God the Father.
Pray for us O St. Catherine, beloved daughter of God!
I read yesterday that God is truly, completely, absolutely, Our Father. Our existence comes forth from Him. He gives His Own Life to us. He is really Our Father — much more than our earthly fathers could ever be.
How beautiful to call God “FATHER” — not just as a title, but as a true relationship.
This is a truth of our faith which we can never completely comprehend or exhaust. We must return to it again and again to allow God to reveal its wonders, its heights and depths, and privilege beyond all imagining.
I recall with joy how I knew and cherished every inch of my son’s tiny body when he was an infant. I loved the sweet smell of his hair, the softness of his tiny feet, and the roundness of his baby tummy. There was never a scratch or a rash or a mark of any kind which escaped my notice. Caressed, kissed, rocked, this tiny child drew never before known streams of delight and tenderness from my heart.
Are we not consumed with love for our own children — intoxicated by our babies? So also God is intoxicated with us. More than intoxicated – “madly in love” so say the Saints.
We are His precious little ones.
Therese reserved for herself in Heaven the very “lap” of God. She dreamed of the day when she would be able to climb up, and play on the knees of the Almighty One.
If we seek to become a little child like Therese, we will be humble and reverent, but also delighted that we are so loved by Our Father. If we approach Him as a child, He will permit us intimacies which even the angels do not enjoy.
Once, when I was feeling sad and lonely, I said to God: “Oh how I wish You could give me a hug!” Immediately I heard in my heart, so clearly and tenderly, “I am always hugging you.”
If the very hairs of our head are counted, as Jesus tells us, then can we doubt that we too are being kissed and caressed and rocked in the arms of God – “always.”
(See below for related idea expressed much more eloquently by the great Saint and Doctor of the Church)
St. Catherine of Siena prayer to the Trinity:
“How, then, did you create, O Eternal Father, this your creature? […] Fire constrained you. O ineffable love, even though in your light you saw all the iniquities, which your creature would commit against your infinite goodness, you looked as if you did not see, but rested your sight on the beauty of your creature, whom you, as mad and drunk with love, fell in love with and out of love you drew her to yourself giving her being in your image and likeness. You, eternal truth, have declared to me your truth, that is, that loved constrained you to create her.”