Saint Catherine of Bologna: Spiritual Weapons Against Evil

St.-Catherine-of-Bologna-1Patroness of Artists and Against Spiritual Temptation

VATICAN CITY, 29 DEC 2010 (vatican.va) –

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

In a recent Catechesis I spoke of St Catherine of Siena. Today I would like to present to you another less well known Saint who has the same name: St Catherine of Bologna, a very erudite yet very humble woman. She was dedicated to prayer but was always ready to serve; generous in sacrifice but full of joy in welcoming Christ with the Cross. Catherine was born in Bologna on 8 September 1413, the eldest child of Benvenuta Mammolini and John de’ Vigri, a rich and cultured patrician of Ferrara, a doctor in law and a public lector in Padua, where he carried out diplomatic missions for Nicholas III d’Este, Marquis of Ferrara.

Not much information about Catherine’s infancy and childhood is available and not all of it is reliable. As a child she lived in her grandparents’ house in Bologna, where she was brought up by relatives, especially by her mother who was a woman of deep faith. With her, Catherine moved to Ferrara when she was about 10 years old and entered the court of Nicholas III d’Este as lady-in-waiting to Margaret, Nicholas’ illegitimate daughter. The Marquis was transforming Ferrara into a fine city, summoning artists and scholars from various countries. He encouraged culture and, although his private life was not exemplary, took great care of the spiritual good, moral conduct and education of his subjects. In Ferrara Catherine was unaware of the negative aspects that are often part and parcel of court life. She enjoyed Margaret’s friendship and became her confidante. She developed her culture by studying music, painting and dancing; she learned to write poetry and literary compositions and to play the viola; she became expert in the art of miniature-painting and copying; she perfected her knowledge of Latin. In her future monastic life she was to put to good use the cultural and artistic heritage she had acquired in these years. She learned with ease, enthusiasm and tenacity. She showed great prudence, as well as an unusual modesty, grace and kindness in her behaviour. However, one absolutely clear trait distinguished her: her spirit, constantly focused on the things of Heaven. In 1427, when she was only 14 years old and subsequent to certain family events, Catherine decided to leave the court to join a group of young noble women who lived a community life dedicating themselves to God. Her mother trustingly consented in spite of having other plans for her daughter. We know nothing of Catherine’s spiritual path prior to this decision. Speaking in the third person, she states that she entered God’s service, “illumined by divine grace… with an upright conscience and great fervour”, attentive to holy prayer by night and by day, striving to acquire all the virtues she saw in others, “not out of envy but the better to please God in whom she had placed all her love” (Le sette armi necessarie alla battaglia spirituali, [The seven spiritual weapons], VII, 8, Bologna 1998, p. 12). She made considerable spiritual progress in this new phase of her life but her trials, her inner suffering and especially the temptations of the devil were great and terrible. She passed through a profound spiritual crisis and came to the brink of despair (cf. ibid., VII, 2, pp. 12-29). She lived in the night of the spirit, and was also deeply shaken by the temptation of disbelief in the Eucharist.

After so much suffering, the Lord comforted her: he gave her, in a vision, a clear awareness of the Real Presence in the Eucharist, an awareness so dazzling that Catherine was unable to express it in words (cf. ibid., VIII, 2. pp. 42-46).

In this same period a sorrowful trial afflicted the community: tension arose between those who wished to follow the Augustinian spirituality and those who had more of an inclination for Franciscan spirituality. Between 1429 and 1430, Lucia Mascheroni, in charge of the group, decided to found an Augustinian monastery. Catherine, on the other hand chose with others to bind herself to the Rule of St Clare of Assisi. It was a gift of Providence, because the community dwelled in the vicinity of the Church of the Holy Spirit, annexed to the convent of the Friars Minor who had adhered to the movement of the Observance. Thus Catherine and her companions could take part regularly in liturgical celebrations and receive adequate spiritual assistance. They also had the joy of listening to the preaching of St Bernardine of Siena (cf. ibid., VII, 62, p. 26). Catherine recounts that in 1429 — the third year since her conversion — she went to make her confession to one of the Friars Minor whom she esteemed, she made a good Confession and prayed the Lord intensely to grant her forgiveness for all her sins and the suffering connected with them.

In a vision God revealed to her that he had forgiven her everything. It was a very strong experience of divine mercy which left an indelible mark upon her, giving her a fresh impetus to respond generously to God’s immense love (cf. ibid. IX, 2, pp. 46-48).

In 1431 she had a vision of the Last Judgement. The terrifying spectacle of the damned impelled her to redouble her prayers and penance for the salvation of sinners. The devil continued to assail her and she entrusted herself ever more totally to the Lord and to the Virgin Mary (cf. ibid., X, 3, pp. 53-54). In her writings, Catherine has left us a few essential notes concerning this mysterious battle from which, with God’s grace, she emerged victorious. She did so in order to instruct her sisters and those who intend to set out on the path of perfection: she wanted to put them on their guard against the temptations of the devil who often conceals himself behind deceptive guises, later to sow doubts about faith, vocational uncertainty and sensuality. In her autobiographical and didactic treatise, The Seven Spiritual Weapons, Catherine offers in this regard teaching of deep wisdom and profound discernment. She speaks in the third person in reporting the extraordinary graces which the Lord gives to her and in the first person in confessing her sins. From her writing transpires the purity of her faith in God, her profound humility, the simplicity of her heart, her missionary zeal, her passion for the salvation of souls. She identifies seven weapons in the fight against evil, against the devil:

1. always to be careful and diligently strive to do good;

2. to believe that alone we will never be able to do something truly good;

3. to trust in God and, for love of him, never to fear in the battle against evil, either in the world or within ourselves;

4. to meditate often on the events and words of the life of Jesus, and especially on his Passion and his death;

5. to remember that we must die;

6. to focus our minds firmly on memory of the goods of Heaven;

7. to be familiar with Sacred Scripture, always cherishing it in our hearts so that it may give direction to all our thoughts and all our actions.

A splendid programme of spiritual life, today too, for each one of us!

In the convent Catherine, in spite of being accustomed to the court in Ferrara, served in the offices of laundress, dressmaker and breadmaker and even looked after the animals. She did everything, even the lowliest tasks, with love and ready obedience, offering her sisters a luminous witness. Indeed she saw disobedience as that spiritual pride which destroys every other virtue. Out of obedience she accepted the office of novice mistress, although she considered herself unfit for this office, and God continued to inspire her with his presence and his gifts: in fact she proved to be a wise and appreciated mistress. Later the service of the parlour was entrusted to her. She found it trying to have to interrupt her prayers frequently in order to respond to those who came to the monastery grill, but this time too the Lord did not fail to visit her and to be close to her. With her the monastery became an increasingly prayerful place of self-giving, of silence, of endeavour and of joy. Upon the death of the abbess, the superiors thought immediately of her, but Catherine urged them to turn to the Poor Clares of Mantua who were better instructed in the Constitutions and in religious observance. Nevertheless, a few years later, in 1456, she was asked at her monastery to open a new foundation in Bologna. Catherine would have preferred to end her days in Ferrara, but the Lord appeared to her and exhorted her to do God’s will by going to Bologna as abbess. She prepared herself for the new commitment with fasting, scourging and penance. She went to Bologna with 18 sisters. As superior she set the example in prayer and in service; she lived in deep humility and poverty. At the end of her three-year term as abbess she was glad to be replaced but after a year she was obliged to resume her office because the newly elected abbess became blind. Although she was suffering and and was afflicted with serious ailments that tormented her, she carried out her service with generosity and dedication. For another year she urged her sisters to an evangelical life, to patience and constancy in trial, to fraternal love, to union with the divine Bridegroom, Jesus, so as to prepare her dowry for the eternal nuptials. It was a dowry that Catherine saw as knowing how to share the sufferings of Christ, serenely facing hardship, apprehension, contempt and misunderstanding (cf. Le sette armi spirituali, X, 20, pp. 57-58). At the beginning of 1463 her health deteriorated. For the last time she gathered the sisters in Chapter, to announce her death to them and to recommend the observance of the Rule. Towards the end of February she was harrowed by terrible suffering that was never to leave her, yet despite her pain it was she who comforted her sisters, assuring them that she would also help them from Heaven. After receiving the last Sacraments, she give her confessor the text she had written: The Seven Spiritual Weapons, and entered her agony; her face grew beautiful and translucent; she still looked lovingly at those who surrounded her and died gently, repeating three times the name of Jesus. It was 9 March 1463 (cf. I. Bembo, Specchio di illuminazione, Vita di S. Caterina a Bologna,Florence 2001, chap. III). Catherine was to be canonized by Pope Clement XI on 22 May 1712. Her incorrupt body is preserved in the city of Bologna, in the chapel of the monastery of Corpus Domini. Dear friends, with her words and with her life, St Catherine of Bologna is a pressing invitation to let ourselves always be guided by God, to do his will daily, even if it often does not correspond with our plans, to trust in his Providence which never leaves us on our own. In this perspective, St Catherine speaks to us; from the distance of so many centuries she is still very modern and speaks to our lives.

She, like us, suffered temptations, she suffered the temptations of disbelief, of sensuality, of a difficult spiritual struggle. She felt forsaken by God, she found herself in the darkness of faith. Yet in all these situations she was always holding the Lord’s hand, she did not leave him, she did not abandon him. And walking hand in hand with the Lord, she walked on the right path and found the way of light.

So it is that she also tells us: take heart, even in the night of faith, even amidst our many doubts, do not let go of the Lord’s hand, walk hand in hand with him, believe in God’s goodness. This is how to follow the right path!

And I would like to stress another aspect: her great humility. She was a person who did not want to be someone or something; she did not care for appearances, she did not want to govern. She wanted to serve, to do God’s will, to be at the service of others. And for this very reason Catherine was credible in her authority, because she was able to see that for her authority meant, precisely, serving others.

Let us ask God, through the intercession of Our Saint, for the gift to achieve courageously and generously the project he has for us, so that he alone may be the firm rock on which our lives are built. Thank you.

“God is always faithful to His promises”

“Recalling with great fondness my four-day visit to the United Kingdom last September, I am glad to have the opportunity to greet you once again, and indeed to greet listeners everywhere as we prepare to celebrate the birth of Christ. Our thoughts turn back to a moment in history when God’s chosen people, the children of Israel, were living in intense expectation. They were waiting for the Messiah that God had promised to send, and they pictured him as a great leader who would rescue them from foreign domination and restore their freedom.”

“God is always faithful to his promises, but he often surprises us in the way he fulfils them.”

“God is always faithful to his promises, but he often surprises us in the way he fulfils them. The child that was born in Bethlehem did indeed bring liberation, but not only for the people of that time and place – he was to be the Saviour of all people throughout the world and throughout history. And it was not a political liberation that he brought, achieved through military means: rather, Christ destroyed death for ever and restored life by means of his shameful death on the Cross. And while he was born in poverty and obscurity, far from the centres of earthly power, he was none other than the Son of God. Out of love for us he took upon himself our human condition, our fragility, our vulnerability, and he opened up for us the path that leads to the fullness of life, to a share in the life of God himself. As we ponder this great mystery in our hearts this Christmas, let us give thanks to God for his goodness to us, and let us joyfully proclaim to those around us the good news that God offers us freedom from whatever weighs us down: he gives us hope, he brings us life.

Dear Friends from Scotland, England, Wales and indeed every part of the English-speaking world, I want you to know that I keep all of you very much in my prayers during this Holy Season. I pray for your families, for your children, for those who are sick, and for those who are going through any form of hardship at this time. I pray especially for the elderly and for those who are approaching the end of their days. I ask Christ, the light of the nations, to dispel whatever darkness there may be in your lives and to grant to every one of you the grace of a peaceful joyful Christmas. May God bless all of you!” –BBC4

IP#61 Mark Brumley – The Handbook of Catholic Apologetics on Inside the Pages

Mark Brumley is one of the masters of today’s Catholic apologetics, so if he recommends a book to help us convey the faith to others, we should take note! “The Handbook of Catholic Apologetics: Reasoned Answers to Questions of Faith” is a fantastic resource for any and all who wish to communicate the faith more clearly.  It’s also for those who desire to deepen and grow in their own understanding of Catholic faith.  Mark does a great job in this interview talking about some of those teachings, as well as, addressing today’s current issues.

Check out the book here!

PS-5 Personal Plan for Holiness – Daily Spiritual Reading

Daily Spiritual Reading, the fuel that keeps the spiritual fire going….Join Teresa Monaghen, of Pro Sanctity, as she offers a “Personal Plan for Holiness”.  Listen along with these short, but beautiful meditations which encourage us to continue on our journey as “saints in the making”!

Learn more about Pro Sanctity at www.prosanctity.org

IP#60 Paul Thigpen – Catholic Answers to Catholic Questions on Inside the Pages

Paul Thigpen is wonderful…he answers our questions about our faith not only from the head but also from the heart!  More than just a proof text book, “Catholic Answers to Catholic Questions” tackles a why range of issues and questions.

Catholic Answers to Catholic Questions provides solid answers to hundreds of common questions asked by people just like you questions both big and small regarding doctrine, history, morality, the pope, saints, the sacraments, the Mass, prayer, Scripture, and much more.

Be more confident in your faith. Allow the why to enhance the what you do as a Catholic. Make better decisions. Be more prepared to pass on your faith to others. Feed your curiosity. Author, theology professor, and Catholic apologist Paul Thigpen ensures the answers are not only rock-solid, but also pastoral in their approach and written in everyday, relevant language.

You can find this fine book here

St. Veronica Giuliani – “a courageous witness of the beauty and power of divine Love”

“In an instant, I saw five brilliant rays of light shine forth from his most holy wounds, and all came to my face.” St. Veronica Giuliani wrote these words more than three centuries ago, describing her mystical experience of Christ.

Vatican City, Dec 15, 2010 / 07:37 pm (vatican.va).-

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

Today I would like to present a mystic who did not live in the Middle Ages. She is St Veronica Giuliani, a Poor Clare Capuchin nun. The reason is that 27 December will be the 350th anniversary of her birth. Città di Castello, the place where she lived the longest and where she died, as well as Mercatello — her birthplace — and the Diocese of Urbino are celebrating this event with joy.

Indeed, Veronica was born on 27 December 1660 in Mercatello, in the Metauro Valley to Francesco Giuliani and Benedetta Mancini. She was the last of seven sisters, three of whom were to embrace the monastic life.

She was given the name “Orsola” [Ursula]. She was seven years old when her mother died and her father moved to Piacenza as customs superintendent of the Duchy of Parma. It was in this city that Ursula felt a growing desire to dedicate her life to Christ. The call to her became ever more pressing so that, when she was 17, she entered the strict cloister of the monastery of Capuchin Poor Clares in Città di Castello. She was to remain here for the rest of her life. Here she received the name of “Veronica”, which means “true image” and she was in fact to become a true image of the Crucified Christ.

A year later she made her solemn religious profession and the process of configuration to Christ began for her, through much penance, great suffering, and several mystic experiences linked to the Passion of Jesus: being crowned with thorns, the mystical espousal, the wound in her heart and the stigmata.

In 1716, when she was 56, she became Abbess of the monastery. She was reconfirmed in this office until her death in 1727, after a very painful prolonged agony that lasted 33 days and culminated in a joy so profound that her last words were: “I have found Love, Love has let himself be seen! This is the cause of my suffering. Tell everyone about it, tell everyone!” (Summarium Beatificationis, 115-120).

On 9 July she left her earthly dwelling place for the encounter with God. She was 67 years old; 50 of those years she spent in the monastery of Città di Castello. She was canonized on May 26, 1893, by Pope Gregory XVI.

Veronica Giuliani wrote prolifically: letters, autobiographical reports, poems. However, the main source for reconstructing her thought is her Diary, which she began in 1693: about 22,000 handwritten pages that cover a span of 34 years of cloistered life.

Her writing flows spontaneously and continuously. There are no crossings-out, corrections or punctuation marks in it, nor was the material divided into chapters or parts according to a plan.

Veronica did not intend to compose a literary work; on the contrary, Fr Girolamo Bastianelli, a Filippini religious, in agreement with the diocesan Bishop Antonio Eustachi, obliged her to set down her experiences in writing.

St Veronica has a markedly Christological and spousal spirituality: She experienced being loved by Christ, her faithful and sincere Bridegroom, to whom she wished to respond with an ever more involved and passionate love. She interpreted everything in the key of love and this imbued her with deep serenity. She lived everything in union with Christ, for love of him, and with the joy of being able to demonstrate to him all the love of which a creature is capable.

The Christ to whom Veronica was profoundly united was the suffering Christ of the Passion, death and Resurrection; it was Jesus in the act of offering himself to the Father in order to save us.

Her intense and suffering love for the Church likewise stemmed from this experience, in its dual form of prayer and offering. The Saint lived in this perspective: she prayed, suffered and sought “holy poverty”, as one “dispossessed” and the loss of self (cf. ibid., III, 523), precisely in order to be like Christ who gave the whole of himself.

In every page of her writings Veronica commends someone to the Lord, reinforcing her prayers of intercession with the offering of herself in every form of suffering. Her heart dilated to embrace all “the needs of the Holy Church”, living anxiously the desire for the salvation of “the whole world” (ibid., III-IV, passim).

Veronica cried: “O sinners… all men and all women, come to Jesus’ heart; come to be cleansed by his most precious blood…. He awaits you with open arms to embrace you” (ibid., II, 16-17).

Motivated by ardent love, she gave her sisters in the monastery attention, understanding and forgiveness. She offered her prayers and sacrifices for the Pope, for her Bishop, for priests and for all those in need, including the souls in Purgatory.

She summed up her contemplative mission in these words: “We cannot go about the world preaching to convert souls but are bound to pray ceaselessly for all those souls who are offending God… particularly with our sufferings, that is, with a principle of crucified life” (ibid., IV, 877). Our Saint conceived this mission as “being in the midst” of men and God, of sinners and the Crucified Christ.

Veronica lived profound participation in the suffering love of Jesus, certain that “to suffer with joy” is the “key to love” (cfibid., I, 299.417; III, 330.303.871; IV, 192). She emphasizes that Jesus suffers for humanity’s sins, but also for the suffering that his faithful servants would have to endure down the centuries, in the time of the Church, precisely because of their solid and consistent faith.

She wrote: “His Eternal Father made them see and feel the extent of all the suffering that his chosen ones would have to endure, the souls dearest to him, that is, those who would benefit from his Blood and from all his sufferings” (ibid., II, 170).

As the Apostle Paul says of himself: “Now I rejoice in my sufferings for your sake, and in my flesh I complete what is lacking in Christ’s afflictions for the sake of his Body, that is, the Church” (Col 1:24).

Veronica reached the point of asking Jesus to be crucified with him. “In an instant”, she wrote, “I saw five radiant rays issue from his most holy wounds; and they all shone on my face. And I saw these rays become, as it were, little tongues of fire. In four of them were the nails; and in one was the spear, as of gold, red hot and white hot: and it went straight through my heart, from one side to the other … and the nails pierced my hands and feet. I felt great pain but in this same pain I saw myself, I felt myself totally transformed into God” (Diary, I, 897).

The Saint was convinced that she was already participating in the Kingdom of God, but at the same time she invoked all the Saints of the Blessed Homeland to come to her aid on the earthly journey of her self-giving while she waited for eternal beatitude; this was her undying aspiration throughout her life (cf. ibid., II, 909; V, 246).

With regard to the preaching of that time which often focused on “saving one’s soul” in individual terms, Veronica shows a strong “sense of solidarity”, a sense of communion with all her brothers and sisters on their way towards Heaven and she lives, prays and suffers for all. The penultimate, earthly things, although appreciated in the Franciscan sense as gifts of the Creator, were always relative, altogether subordinate to “God’s taste” and under the sign of radical poverty.

In the communio sanctorum, she explains the gift of herself to the Church, as the relationship between the pilgrim Church and the heavenly Church. “All the Saints”, she wrote, “are up there thanks to the merit and the Passion of Jesus; but they cooperated with all that the Lord did, so that their life was totally ordered … regulated by these same works (his)” (ibid., III, 203).

We find many biblical citations in Veronica’s writings, at times indirectly, but always precise. She shows familiarity with the Sacred Text, by which her spiritual experience was nourished. Furthermore, it should be pointed out that the intense moments of Veronica’s mystical experience are never separate from the salvific events celebrated in the Liturgy, where the proclamation of the Word of God and listening to it has a special place. Hence Sacred Scripture illumines, purifies and confirms Veronica’s experience, rendering it ecclesial. On the other hand, however, her experience itself, anchored in Sacred Scripture with uncommon intensity, guides one to a more profound and “spiritual” reading of the text itself, to enter into its hidden depths. Not only does she express herself with the words of Sacred Scripture but she also really lives by them, they take on life in her.

For example, our Saint often quotes the words of the Apostle Paul: “If God is for us, who is against us?” (Rom 8:31; cf. Diary, I, 714; II 116.1021; III, 48).

The assimilation of this Pauline text, her great trust and profound joy, becomes a fait accompliwithin her. “My soul”, she wrote, “was bound to the divine will and I was truly established and fixed for ever in the will of God. It seemed to me that I should never again have to be separated from this will of God and I came to myself with these precise words: nothing will be able to separate me from the will of God, neither anxieties, nor sorrows nor toil nor contempt nor temptation nor creatures nor demons nor darkness, not even death itself, because, in life and in death, I want all, and in all things, the will of God” (Diary, IV, 272). Thus we have the certainty that death is not the last word, we are fixed in God’s will, hence, truly, in eternal life.

In particular, Veronica proved a courageous witness of the beauty and power of Divine Love which attracted her, pervaded her and inflamed her. Crucified Love was impressed within her flesh as it was in that of St Francis of Assisi, with Jesus’ stigmata. “‘My Bride’, the Crucified Christ whispers to me, ‘the penance you do for those who suffer my disgrace is dear to me’…. Then detaching one of his arms from the Cross he made a sign to me to draw near to his side… and I found myself in the arms of the Crucified One. What I felt at that point I cannot describe: I should have liked to remain for ever in his most holy side” (ibid., I, 37).

This is also an image of her spiritual journey, of her interior life: to be in the embrace of the Crucified One and thus to remain in Christ’s love for others.

Veronica also experienced a relationship of profound intimacy with the Virgin Mary, attested by the words she heard Our Lady say one day, which she reports in her Diary: “I made you rest on my breast, you were united with my soul, and from it you were taken as in flight to God” (IV, 901).

St Veronica Giuliani invites us to develop, in our Christian life, our union with the Lord in living for others, abandoning ourselves to his will with complete and total trust, and the union with the Church, the Bride of Christ.

She invites us to participate in the suffering love of Jesus Crucified for the salvation of all sinners; she invites us to fix our gaze on Heaven, the destination of our earthly journey, where we shall live together with so many brothers and sisters the joy of full communion with God; she invites us to nourish ourselves daily with the Word of God, to warm our hearts and give our life direction. The Saint’s last words can be considered the synthesis of her passionate mystical experience: “I have found Love, Love has let himself be seen!”. Thank you.

History of Apparitions: Spotlight on Our Lady of Guadalupe

Rome Reports

January 10, 2011. The Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe is the most visited Catholic landmark in the Americas.

Every year more than 20 million people gather in this basilica located on the hill of Tepeyac in Mexico, where the Virgin Mary appeared four times to native-indian saint, Juan Diego in 1531.

During the apparition, the Virgin asked him if he could make a shrine here. The bishop of the area summoned Juan Diego to see if he was indeed telling the truth and asked him to bring roses from the hill where Mary appeared.

Fr. Salvatore Perrella
Vice President, Pontifical Marianum Theological Faculty (Rome)
The Tepeyac hill is very rocky and it’s very hard to find roses, especially in December. Nevertheless, the farmer Juan Diego found what the bishop had asked of him. He put the roses in his cloak and went to the bishop. He said ‘here is the proof that you need’ and opened his cloak, he discovered that in place of the roses was this beautiful image of the Virgin Mary, who appeared dressed like a native Indian, with native Indian features.”

The last vision of the Virgin of Guadalupe was on December 12th, the day the feast is celebrated. It’s a special day for the Americas, especially Mexico, whose patroness is the Lady of Guadalupe.

Fr. Salvatore Perrella
Vice President, Pontifical Marianum Theological Faculty (Rome)
“The Mexican identity owes a lot to Mary, because she made them discover this identity, this unity of the Mexican people.”

Perrella, who is an expert of apparitions, says that when the Virgin appears, she normally asks for the construction of a shrine.

Fr. Salvatore Perrella
Vice President, Pontifical Marianum Theological Faculty (Rome)

It doesn’t necessarily have to be a place of worship in honor of the Virgin. Mary asked the Indian Juan Diego to construct a church to worship the true God. Because of this, the shrine of Guadalupe is not just a Marian shrine, but it is also a sanctuary in which Christ is the center of focus.”

In 1990, during the second journey of John Paul II to Mexico, he declared the indian Juan Diego blessed. In 2002, he became a saint.

In all of the Catholic Church’s history, the Vatican has only recognized 15 apparitions of the Virgin Mary. And the Virgin of Guadalupe is one of these.

IP#59 Dr. Thomas Howard – Narnia and Beyond on Inside the Pages

Narnia And Beyond: A Guide to the Fiction of C. S. Lewis” by Thomas Howard is fantastic.  Dr.  Howard is regarded as one of the leading authorities on the works of C. S. Lewis,  and with remarkable clarity he shares with us all the Lewis that has touched the hearts and minds of so many generations, both young and old.  It is always a joy to talk with Thomas Howard, but this conversation was particularly enlightening.

You can check out the book at igantius.com


IP#58 Amy Welborn – Light of the World on Inside the Pages

An unprecedented book-length interview given by a Pope, Light of the World by German journalist Peter Seewald, is an absolute must for those who look to our Holy Father for guidance and direction as we attempt to deepen our relationship with Jesus Christ. I am beyond delighted to have Amy Welborn with us to discuss this important conversation Pope Benedict XVI is actually having with us all.  Amy, the author of numerous books, has written extensively on the teachings of Pope Benedict; I couldn’t have anyone better to go “Inside the Pages” of this work that tackles some the greatest issues facing the world today.

Check out Amy Welborn’s blog  “Charlotte was Both

You can find our more at igantius.com the website for Ignatius Press

 

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