Published by Dominican Nuns Ireland in Reflections (Dominican) · 24 April 2021
Tags: St, Catherine, Mercy
Tags: St, Catherine, Mercy
As we continue our novena in honour of St Catherine during this time of pandemic ask her to intercede for all the needs of our Church and our world at this present time. Indeed the state of the Church and world in Catherine’s day was no different – schism in the Church, the Black Death, factions among various states etc. Yet Catherine never lost sight of God’s infinite Mercy as is evident from the following passage from The Dialogue:
O Eternal Mercy, you who cover over your creatures’ faults! It does not surprise me that you say of those who leave deadly sin behind and return to you: “I will not remember that you had ever offended me.” O unspeakable mercy! What mercy comes forth from you Godhead, eternal Father, to rule the whole world with your power!
By your mercy we were created. And by your mercy we were created anew in your Son’s blood. It is your mercy that preserves us. Your mercy made your Son play death against life and life against death on the wood of the Cross. In him life confounded the death that is our sin, even while that same death of sin robbed the spotless Lamb of his bodily life. But who was conquered? Death! And how? By your mercy!
Your mercy is life-giving. It is the light in which both the upright and sinners discover your goodness. Your mercy shines forth in your saints in the height of heaven and if I turn to the earth your mercy is everywhere.
You temper your justice with mercy. In mercy you cleansed us in the blood; in mercy you kept company with your creatures. O mad lover! It was not enough for you to take on our humanity. You had to die as well! Nor was death enough: you descended to the depths to summon our holy ancestors and fulfil your truth and mercy in them. Your goodness promises good to those who serve you in truth, so you were to call these servants of yours from their suffering to reward them for their labours!
I see our mercy pressing you to give us even more when you leave yourself with us as food to strengthen our weakness, so that we, forgetful fools, should be forever reminded of your goodness. Every day you give us this food, showing us yourself in the sacrament of the altar within the mystic body of holy Church. And what had done this? Your mercy!
O mercy! My heart is engulfed with the thought of you! For wherever I turn my thoughts I find nothing but mercy! O eternal Father forgive my foolish presumption in babbling on so before you – but your merciful love is my excuse in the presence of your kindness.
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