For a fuller perspective on the life and times of the great Catherine of Siena – who seems to grow in my own estimation the more I read of her – peruse this reflection by Father Thomas McDermott, a Dominican, like Catherine. Schisms, anti-popes, absent popes, sin, clerical concubinage, abuse, disbelief, apostasy, and the Black Death which wiped out most of Europe, killing four-fifths of the Catherine’s native Siena. These were just part of the evils she had to face, and help heal in a disfigured Church. As Father puts it:

Catherine imagines the Church as a beautiful maiden whose face has been pelted and besmirched by the sins of the Church’s mortal members. Catherine often speaks of sin as leprosy on the face of the Church. It would never have occurred to her to leave the Bride of Christ because of te sins of humanity. For her, the Church is infinitely more than a mere human institution.

Just so. Well  worth a read to put things in perspective.

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