long time ago in a land not so far away, an imperial Pope repeatedly
battled rebel forces. Those wars killed thousands, split Christendom,
and spawned anti-Popes who joined the rebel alliance, brazenly
challenging the authority of God’s Vicar on earth.
this corrupt, brutal, turbulent world was born Catherine, the
daughter of a modest Siennese cloth dyer. Now famed as the great St
Catherine of Siena who changed the course of the Church and of
European history, this child was early noted for her simple goodness,
her great intelligence, and her remarkable courage – even in the
face of the dangers and atrocities that characterized those dark
Catherine of Siena and Her Times tells
the moving tale of Catherine, whose call to live a cloistered life of
prayer and penance was trumped not only by the social needs of her
day (poverty, plague) but by the explicit orders of the Pope, who,
hearing of her remarkable powers of reconciliation of enemies, called
her out of obscurity to mediate between the warring parties,
sometimes even at the risk to her life.
partisan, Catherine used her access to the Pope to nag – that’s
not too strong a word – the Pope to expunge from the Church the
vices and luxuries that in those days had corrupted it at all levels.
Too, she demanded that he return from the security of exile in France
to his proper place in Rome, where the blood of martyrs had
consecrated the soil.
letters Catherine sent to popes and politicians, cardinals and kings,
as well as from the written accounts of many friends of Catherine,
author Margaret Roberts has crafted the moving tale of this holy 14th
century woman who rivaled in stature and influence the storied
prophets of the Old Testament – and whose life serves as a noble
example for Christians in our own turbulent times.
these fascinating pages, you’ll encounter Catherine,
modest young girl torn from her beloved cloistered life, and forced
to sustain her life of continual prayer in the courts of dangerous
kings and murderous queens, whose fearsome will she was required by
the pope to challenge
passionate, plain-spoken saint who, while sternly rebuking the high
and the mighty, remained gravely conscious of her own failings and
the need for love to triumph over all
brave soul who repulsed with quiet words the bloodthirsty mob that
rushed in to kill her
simple Christian, who was repeatedly interrogated by experts, who
hoped to convict her of heresy and burn her at the stake
woman whose faith remained steady in a world – and a Church –
shaken and rocked by corruption, scandal, apostasy, and bloodshed.
Christians, our times are rough, and are likely to get rougher as
aggressive secularism comes to dominate ever more aspects of our
society. Rather than letting discouragement overtake you or confusion
about how to act amidst conflicting demands in ugly times, turn for
inspiration to this moving biography of St. Catherine of Siena, one
of the greatest political figures of the 14th century and one of the
greatest saints of all times.