Day 11 – Siena

What a beautiful city with the buildings all the same colour, which reminds me of the wax crayon colour, burnt umber. The colours run from pale yellows to rusty, brownish shades of brown.

We are here to learn about Catherine, who lived about 100 years after Francis and Clare. The country and the church was in chaos in this time and Catherine grew up in the midst of the disruption of the plague, civil wars and erosion of the church. Catherine was the 24th child of 25, born to a fairly well-to-do family. She had a mystical experience of God when she was only nine years old. Although her father had plans for her to marry well, she was able to convince her father that her call was real. Visiting St. Dominic’s church this afternoon, lent an inkling of the devotion that was given to Catherine.  Her finger and skull are enshrined for us to see.

Windows in St. Dominic’s church by Carini, (1982)

Earlier in the day, before leaving Assisi, we visited the Papal Basilica of Mary of the Angels. Inside the church is a small stone hut where Francis for the first time understood his vocation. He formed the Order of Franciscans in 1209. About the same time the Dominican order was created.

The site of the origins of the Franciscans, Assisi

A pleasant drink was enjoyed on the Campo (main square), remembering our late pilgrim, Laurenda Daniells, who loved Italy so much and also toasting our pilgrim, Jeff Seaton who is convocating today with a D. Min. at Duke University.