Discovering our Catholic Hearts
When Catherine of Siena, an Italian Lay Woman and Doctor of the Church was a young adult she decided she wanted to love God with her whole soul, mind and heart. She thought she could best do that by spending her days in adoration of the Blessed Sacrament in a small room (she called it her cell) in her house. She left the house only to attend daily Mass. After a short time of this practice, she heard God’s voice. She records in The Dialogue(the story of her life) a conversation with God. God says to Catherine, “if you want to love me as much as I love you, than you need to serve your sisters and brothers.” God, in a sense, pushed Catherine out of her cell and into the world. Catherine discovered the face of Christ in those who were dying of the plague and Catherine preached peace to her sisters and brothers who were at war with one another. Catherine learned that to love God is to serve the world.
The Archdiocese of Washington is taking up the theme of service and love in a one day Social Ministry Conference on Saturday June 13. See www.adw.org/service for more information.
The day features keynote presentations and break-out sessions on the Church’s mission to proclaim the Good News of Christ’s love for the poor and how the Church carries out this mission, locally, nationally, and internationally. There are workshops for teens, young adults and adults. Participants will have a chance to gather with Catholics from all over the Archdiocese of Washington and to explore the relationship of theology, prayer and service. The day will conclude with a prayer service with Archbishop Wuerl.
Catherine’s experience of taking her love for the Lord to the streets taught her that her “cell” was within her, that she could stay close to the Lord in midst of the noise and distractions of daily life. Most of all Catherine discovered a heart as large as the world. She discovered a Catholic Heart!