Monthly Archives: May 2016

Canto 8: Seeing Beyond the Veil

By Aaron James It is dusk in the Valley of the Rulers, and Dante obligingly paints the picture for us, with a description of sunset that is memorable for its melancholy beauty: “That hour had fallen when the sailor bends

Posted in Purgatorio

Canto 7: Clothed in the Three Holy Virtues

By Deacon Tony Amato Canto 7 begins with Virgil letting Sordello know just who it is that he has encountered: “I am Virgil, and for no other failing did I lose Heaven but my lack of Faith.” [lines 7-8] Sordello

Posted in Purgatorio

Canto 6: Divine Mercy and Prayer

By Fr. Ryan Erlenbush The sixth canto of the Purgatorio mirrors the sixth cantos of Inferno and Paradiso in which Dante discusses the social order in progressively larger circles—from Florence, to Italy, to the Empire. In Inferno 6, we heard

Posted in Purgatorio

Canto 5: The Waiting Game

By Fr. Marcus Pollard While the Purgatorio is a single work, Dante’s vision of the state and experiences of the suffering souls of the dead has them divided between “ante-purgatory” and “purgatory” proper. In Canto 5, Dante and Virgil are

Posted in Purgatorio

Canto 3: God’s Ways Are Not Our Ways

By Lou Massett Canto 3 opens with a discussion concerning God’s mysteries. Virgil says, “…mad is he who hopes to plumb the endless ways of those three Persons in substantial Unity.” [lines 34-36] We are reminded of the passage from

Posted in Purgatorio

Canto 2: Friendship as an Anticipation of Paradise

By Fr. David Tedesche About 150 years before Dante penned the Divine Comedy, the Cistercian monk Aelred of Rievaulx wrote his classic work Spiritual Friendship. One of the main ideas of his treatise is that friendship is essentially the beginning

Posted in Purgatorio