Monday, February 22, 2010

An Extraordinary Study in Religious Emotionalism

The Life of La Mere Marie-Catherine de Saint-Augustin is written for edification. This nun, at the age of sixteen, came in 1649 from France to the Hotel-Dieu at Quebec, and remained there until her death at the age of thirty-six. She had always a precocious piety, showing a burning faith before she was four years old. The well known Jesuit father, Paul Ragueneau, wrote her life, based largely upon her own record of her visions.
The present volume is an extraordinary study in religious emotionalism. The Marie Catherine lived in an atmosphere always charged with the supernatural, and her soul was the scene of endless assaults by the devil.
At one time she is assailed by thoughts and desires of the most carnal character; her whole being seems invested by the demon of impurity; she is unable to get rid of obscene images which haunt her imagination. At another time the temptation takes the form of the impulse to return to France. She sees visions and has knowledge of events before they happen. She is given supernatural insight into the hearts of individuals, reading, for instance, the soul of M. de Mesy, the Governor, when he was opposing her spiritual director, Laval, and seeing how nearly Satan has secured him, though in the end he is saved. When a great earthquake occurred in 1663 she had a divine notification that it was imminent and knew that it was sent to awaken Canada from its spiritual lethargy. Laval was fighting the brandy interest at the time. Her later spiritual guide was the Jesuit, Brebeuf, who was martyred in 1649. He is as real a person as if he were alive, appears to her constantly and gives precise directions as to what she shall do.

Link (here) to the full account by Fr. Hughes / M.Hudon contained in the book entitled Review of Historical Publications relating to Canada Vol. 12

Engraving and biography of Blessed Marie-Catherine de Saint-Augustin (here)

Considered one of the co-founders of the church in Quebec, mother Marie-Catherine de Saint Augustin was known for her visions of hell and an apparition of Father John de Brébeuf.
Link (here)

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