Monthly Archives: August 2016

Canto 7: Divine Mercy and Cur Deus Homo

By Fr. Ryan Erlenbush The seventh canto of the Paradiso contains Dante’s discussion of the redemption of man which was wrought through the incarnation and death of the Son of God. Especially during this Year of Mercy, we have much to

Posted in Paradiso

Canto 6: Not Honor but Service

Manuscript illumination, c. 1450. In service to the Provencal count Raymond Berenguer, Romeo de Villeneuve arranges the marriages of his daughters.   By Fr. Paul Tomasso Dante has proceeded to the second heaven, the planet Mercury, where he meets the

Posted in Paradiso

Canto 5: Trust and Hope

By Fr. Marcus Pollard Of the three realms described in the Divine Comedy, the Paradiso is the most difficult to think about and imagine. In the Inferno, Dante takes us down into the earth where we witness hell’s punishments. The

Posted in Paradiso

Canto 2: Putting First Things First

By Fr. David Tedesche In the second canto of the Paradiso, we continue our rapid journey to the stars begun in the first canto. We can picture Beatrice whose limbs in relation to one another are motionless like a sculpture

Posted in Paradiso

Canto 1: Hitting the Mark

By Sebastian Mahfood  In our first canto of the Paradiso, Dante, for help in describing the ineffable, calls upon Apollo, the father of the muses, the god of poetry, and, as the sun god, the symbol of the one True

Posted in Paradiso

Canto 33: An Open Door to Paradise

By Fr. Joe McCaffrey The story of Canto 33 is hard to summarize. There is so much detail that a summary threatens to be longer than the text. A simple summary would be that Beatrice and Dante converse, a one-sided conversation

Posted in Purgatorio

Canto 32: Fixing our Gaze on the Mercy of Christ

By Lucy Bennett We enter Canto 32 as Dante is gazing in rapture upon his beloved Beatrice: “My eyes were so insistent, so intent on finding satisfaction for their ten year thirst that every other sense was spent” [lines 1-4].

Posted in Purgatorio

Canto 31: Christ Revealed

By Sebastian Mahfood Beatrice, having completed her explanation to the angel choir, turns back to Dante and forces him to confess his sin of abandoning her (that is, divine revelation) for the pursuit of philosophy unaided by divine light. Dante

Posted in Purgatorio

Canto 30: Repentance Leads to Freedom

By David Wallace The heavenly procession which began its journey in Canto 29 now comes to a halt in Canto 30. The sevenfold light leading the procession reminds us of the seven golden lampstands as well as the “seven torches of

Posted in Purgatorio

Canto 29: Salvation History and Our Own History of Salvation

By Colleen Trevisani “Blessed is the one whose fault is removed, whose sin is forgiven.” Reflecting upon Dante the poet’s use of the first verse of Psalm 32 in Canto 29 is a great way to connect the Purgatorio and

Posted in Purgatorio

Canto 28: Memory and Destiny

By Peter Jesserer Smith Every person needs to know where they come from in order to know where they are going. Memory—particularly the memory of our story and the story of our family, community, and people group—shapes our own identity,

Posted in Purgatorio