Saint Catherine of Siena


Saint Catherine of Siena, 1347–1380
April 29

Saint Catherine of Siena was one of 25 children. From the time she was very young, she wanted to serve God by helping to take care of her brothers and sisters. She was so wise about spiritual matters that she became an adviser to many people, including two Popes. Throughout her life, Saint Catherine found strength to face hard things through Holy Communion. She said that each time we receive the Eucharist, it helps to make our faith in Jesus’ love grow stronger, and helps us build God’s Kingdom as we love our family and friends more.

Discuss: How can receiving Holy Communion help you love your family and friends?

When one of the Popes she advised moved to France from Rome, she urged him to return. The Pope was so impressed by her argument that he did what she asked. Catherine is the patron Saint of firefighters, nurses, and miscarriages. As a Dominican sister she cared for cancer victims, lepers, prisoners, and victims of the plague.

Catherine is the patron Saint of Italy and of the dying, and is invoked against headaches and the plague. She is also a co-patron Saint of Europe.

Family and Friends

Explain that Saint Catherine of Siena suggested that if we love the people around us more, we are helping to build God’s Kingdom.

  • Discuss with your child some ways in which we all can love our friends more. Have him/her make a list of these things.
  • Next, talk about ways that family members can love one another more. Have her/him make a separate list for these ideas.
  • Have him/her put check marks to the left side of the things he/she will try to work on. You should go through the list also; put your check marks on the right side of each list.
  • Make a Building God’s Kingdom list of things you both will try to put into practice in the following week.
  • Share your commitments with other family members so that they can help you both stay on track.