St Catherine cuts hairAs the image shows, Saint Catherine of Siena cutting her hair and putting aside her beautiful clothing is interpreted as an act of modesty, chastity and a gesture of asceticism. Thus, she turns her eyes toward the Lord her Divine Spouse and away from man (the world).

Saint Catherine’s new and divine generativity is the result of her intense relationship with the Lord. More than her “speaking truth to power” which many today recognize in her, the key to knowing Saint Catherine and her place in the spiritual life is her ability to remain singular in her attraction to the things of God and his transformative Love. Concretely, this love centered on the Eucharist. As Pope Benedict XVI said,

Like the Sienese Saint, every believer feels the need to be conformed with the sentiments of the heart of Christ to love God and his neighbour as Christ himself loves. And we can all let our hearts be transformed and learn to love like Christ in a familiarity with him that is nourished by prayer, by meditation on the Word of God and by the sacraments, above all by receiving Holy Communion frequently and with devotion. Catherine also belongs to the throng of Saints devoted to the Eucharist with which I concluded my Apostolic Exhortation Sacramentum Caritatis (cf. n. 94). Dear brothers and sisters, the Eucharist is an extraordinary gift of love that God continually renews to nourish our journey of faith, to strengthen our hope and to inflame our charity, to make us more and more like him.

How much more ought we to follow this most beloved saint today: she indeed speaks to the heart of the matter. If you are serious, look at Catherine!