Thursday, April 29, 2021


Pierre Teilhard de Chardin once said that “joy is the infallible sign of the presence of God.” Certainly, joy is the fruit of real confidence in God's ineffable mercy. This is our joy as monks- we see over and over again our foolishness and sinfulness, but we learn to rejoice because Christ's mercy is always available. This is certainly reason enough for us to rejoice always, for as Saint Paul says, “If God is for us, who can be against us?”

So amazed is Saint Catherine of Siena at the endless mercy of God that she will call God “crazy.” In her Dialogues, she writes, “O eternal beauty! O eternal goodness, O eternal mercy! O, crazy lover! You have need of your creature? It seems so to me, for you act as if you could not live without her. Why are you so crazy? Because you have fallen in love with what you have made! You are pleased and delighted over her as if you were drunk with desire for her salvation. She runs away from you and you go looking for her. She strays and you draw closer to her.”

the Mystical Marriage of Saint Catherine of Siena, Giovanni di Paolo, Italian, Siena 1398–1482, tempera and gold on wood11 3/4 x 9 1/2 in. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Used with permission.