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St. Catherine of Siena is my patroness, didn’t you know? My name, Trena, is a diminutive of Catherine. When I was little this was a source of frustration for me. I remember my mother showing me a picture of St. Catherine in a children’s saint book. I couldn’t understand why I didn’t get a princess saint to go along with my name. The picture showed her kneeling in a dungeon like room, wounds in her hands, and a habit that was decidedly that lacked a flowing veil due to the huge crown of thorns on her head. All the other female saints in the book seemed to have delicate, jeweled crowns like I would prefer. She didn’t look very understanding, or, well, let’s face it pretty. She looked like she was in a lot of pain. The thought that flitted through my head was while my Mom was explaining St. Catherine to me was, “of all the princesses in this book, you chose this sad, painful looking person to be my saint?”

Now that I am older, I realize what an awesome patroness she is. She doesn’t act like a simpering princess either, she’s acts like a queen. She’s a doctor of the Church, co-patron of Italy, and one of the six patrons of Europe. She never takes no for an answer. She bosses people around like no ones business. I think she may have bossed God around, just a little (and I am inclined think God liked it). She’s a mover and a shaker. Seriously, she marched to France to tell the Pope to go back to Rome. Who even does that?

Furthermore, she was so humble and brave that although she received the wounds of the stigmata, she asked Christ to make the invisible so no one else would know. Sure enough, after she died they appeared for all the world to see.

So, happy feast day!

(Disclaimer, I think the picture is one of St. Catherine of Siena. Someone is probably going to tell me it’s someone else. But I like it.)



Easter Friday! One of the few Fridays of the year that is completely free from any penitential acts, and, in fact, should be treated like a Sunday! Feast! Eat meat! Have dessert after every meal! The Lord has truly risen!

(And your probably wondering, “great, what is with the half-eaten croissant?” Well, I forgot to take a picture before I ate it, and the crumbs look so flaky, you get a better idea of how wonderful it was.)

This photo has been making the rounds on the internet, you’ve probably already seen it, but I wanted to share it again. Pictured here is Bl. John Paul II, Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI, and Pope Francis. Note: There has been some discussion as to if the man in the middle is in fact Cardinal Bergoglio. I google the photo several times, and found a couple of newspapers carrying it and captioned as being Benedict XVI, Francis, and John Paul II. However, this does not mean the media is infallible (are we shocked?), nor am I for that matter. If in fact the third man in the photo is not Bergoglio, well, my friends, you have experienced a true sacred-monkeys-in-the-Vatican-moment! 🙂 In the mean time, just appreciate the photo for what it is worth.

(Do we call him Pope Francis or Pope Francis I? I think it is Pope Francis until there is a Pope Francis II, and then he would be Francis I. Just like a John Doe, doesn’t become John Doe Sr. until there is a John Doe Jr., but I don’t know for sure. Need to do some research on that one.)

This morning Pope Francis visited the basilica of Mary Major in Rome, to pray to our Lady. If you haven’t been (or even if you have) to Mary Major, check out the 3D views here, it is an amazing church!

The Installation of Pope Francis as Bishop of Rome is scheduled for March 19, 2013 – the feast of St. Joseph. They should reveal his coat of arms them, I can’t wait to see what it will be!

We have a new pope! Pope Francis! Formerly Cardinal Jorge Marie Bergoglio, Archbishop of Buenos Aries!

Happy feast of St. Lucy! I found this painting by Domenico Veneziano, but I am not sure it is the right St. Lucy simply because she still has her eyes (they were put out as torture before she was killed), but then I don’t know everything about St. Lucy.

martyrdom of st. lucy


Source: via Trena on Pinterest

Today is the feast of everyone’s favorite, St. Nicholas! I was Christmas shopping on and I found the cool postcard up above, I wish I had found it a few weeks ago, but maybe I’ll buy a few now and save them for next year. . .

And one more post before the weekend!

Today is the feast of the dedication of the Basilica of St. John Lateran! Check out the amazing panoramic views of the basilica posted by the Holy See.

A few interesting facts about St. John Lateran:

1) There is no St. John Lateran – in Italian the basilica is Basilica San Giovanni in Laterano, or the Basilica of St. John in the Lateran. Lateran refers to the name of the family that owned the palace and grounds before they were seized. I forget who seized them, but I am pretty sure it was an emperor and I think it might have been Nero. Later the Lateran Palace was given to the Pope by Emperor Constantine.

2) The Basilica is the official seat of the Pope as Bishop of Rome, not St. Peter’s Basilica. Although the Pope resides at the Vatican he reigns from St. John Lateran.

3) Oooh, sources, yay! I was right, the palace was seized during the reign of Nero. . .

Today is the feast of Blessed Pope John Paul II! I had the enormous grace to live during the life of Pope John Paul II, he was the only pope I knew until recently. I was also blessed to be in Rome while Pope John Paul II was dying – I also there while he was lying in state, for his funeral, and for the election of Pope Benedict XVI.

During his last days I was particularly struck by one thing, the pope of the youth was willing to grow old and die. He let us see him as his body succumbed to age and Parkinson’s disease. When the current world practically shouts in our faces “Be young and beautiful always! Youth is everything! Never grow up! Never grow old!” Pope John Paul II showed us that we truly had nothing to fear in this life, even age and death, if our eyes were firmly fixed on the next.

(The picture above is from the Marvel Comic The Life of Pope John Paul II.)


Happy belated feast day of St. Augustine (it was yesterday)! And the day before was the fest of his mother, St. Monica. St. Augustine could be one of the patrons of this blog because  Sebastian mentions him  in Brideshead Revisited. Sebastian uses a modified quote from Augustine’s Confessions saying at one point, “God, make me good – but not yet.” St. Augustine had a pretty wild life before answering the call of God, in many respects just like Sebastian.


Check out this cool medal that incorporates both St. Monica and St. Augustine! I particularly like the shape of this one. I wish it came in gold. . .



Source: via Trena on Pinterest

Mass of the Assumption ~ Responsorial Psalm ~ Ps 45:10, 11, 12, 16R.

R. The queen stands at your right hand, arrayed in gold.
The queen takes her place at your right hand in gold of Ophir.

R. The queen stands at your right hand, arrayed in gold.
Hear, O daughter, and see; turn your ear,
forget your people and your father’s house.

R. The queen stands at your right hand, arrayed in gold.
So shall the king desire your beauty;
for he is your lord.

R. The queen stands at your right hand, arrayed in gold.
They are borne in with gladness and joy;
they enter the palace of the king.

R. The queen stands at your right hand, arrayed in gold.

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