Fr Paul Gooley reads from the Gospel of John (14: 21-26) in which Jesus says, ‘If anyone loves me, they will keep my word and my Father will love them, and we shall come to them and make our home in them.’ Afterwards, Fr Paul shares a little about the live of St Catherine of Siena, whose memorial we celebrate today.

Fr Paul says Catherine was born in Siena and, seeking perfection, entered the Third Order of the Dominicans when she was still in her teens.

In 1370 Catherine was commanded by a vision to leave her secluded life and enter the public life of the world. She wrote many letters to major public figures and carried on a long correspondence with Pope Gregory XI, urging him to reform the clergy and the administration of the Papal States. She burned with the love of God and her neighbour.

As an ambassador Catherine brought peace and harmony between cities. She fought hard to defend the liberty and rights of the Popes and did much for the renewal of religious life. She also dictated books full of sound doctrine and spiritual inspiration.

Cahterine died on 29 April 1380. In 1970 Pope Paul VI declared her a Doctor of the Church.

So, on this special day, Fr Paul invites us to ask, ‘St Catherine of Sienna…Pray for us!’