Saint Catherine of Siena Anniversaries 2019
Saint Patron of Europe & Italy

Booking a guided tour through her hometown to follow her steps

Saint Catherine of Siena celebrates in 2019 two important anniversaries:

  • 80 years ago Pope Pio XII declared her Saint Patron of Italy together with Saint Francis;
  • 20 years ago Saint John Paul II declared her Saint Patron of Europe.

Pope John Paul II wrote in 1989: “Francis and Catherine loved the Catholic Church also for its imperfection, and with the sincerity of faithful and affectioned sons, they used to recognize in its human components. They understood that the reason why the Catholic Church should be served indeed, is to let not make the poverty of men conceal what actually is in its sacramental mission of salvation.”

Saint Catherine’s life in Siena

Fresco of St. Catherine of Siena from San Domenico Church in Siena When she was just 6 years old, Saint Catherine said she had her first mystic vision of Christ and soon after she decided to give her whole life to predicate the faith in God and make her voice be heard by some of the most important personalities of that time in order to reform the Catholic Church.

Sanctuary and Home of St. Catherine in Fontebranda

Her parents used to live in the neighborhood of Siena which is still called Fontebranda, by the spring situated not far from the church of San Domenico. Saint Catherine herself used to go to this water spring, and that’s why Sienese people used to call her by the pet name “la Santa di Fontebranda” (Italian for the Saint of Fontebranda).
The house where she used to live is now a Sanctuary and a museum, and it is included in the itinerary that follows the steps of Saint Catherine through Siena

Santa Maria della Scala Hospital

During the time Saint Catherine spent in this city, she took care of ill people, especially those who had the plague. And every day, she used to go to the Santa Maria della Scala, the biggest Medieval hospital of that time. There are many famous events telling us about the time she spent there and the comfort she used to bring to all those people.
This young Sienese girl used to address confidently and with burning words the ecclesial and social problems of her time, yet the same strength and enthusiasm did she put to instill faith in those in need of comfort.

San Domenico Church

San Domenico Church, a majestic building on top of Fontebranda neighborhood, is another meaningful milestone in the guided tour of Siena retracing the passage of Saint Catherine in her own birthplace.
Here is where she was eventually ordained, and here is where her head lays now as a relic after being smuggled with plenty of obstacles by faithful Sienese followers in Rome.

Celebrating 2019 anniversaries of Saint Catherine

Saint Catherine is an inspiring figure of strength and stride in the Catholic Church, who suggests us to strive and confront when the future is full of uncertainty.

Visiting Siena, Saint Catherine birthplace by going through the most important places for her in this city and hearing about her thoughts and life events by the voice of a licensed tour guide may be a good way to enjoy some of the most beautiful and important buildings of the city and, at the same time, honour the 20th and 80th anniversary of her being Saint Patron of Europe and Italy. 

“Be who God meant you to be and you will set the world on fire.”

Duration: 3 hours

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