Catherine came from an aristocratic Bolognese family. From the age of 9 she was sent to the court of the Duke of Ferrara as lady in waiting to his daughter. There she received excellent training in reading, writing, music, dancing, singing and art.
She left court and entered a convent in Ferrara. In 1432, together with several other young women, she founded a monastery of the Order of Poor Clares. She returned to Bologna in 1456 and she became the founder and Abbess of a monastery of the same order in association with the church of Corpus Domini.
She died in 1463 at the age of 49 and was buried. After 18 days of alleged graveside miracles, her incorrupt body was exhumed and relocated to the chapel of the Poor Clares, next to the church of Corpus Domini where it remains on display, dressed in her religious habit and seated upright behind glass.
On certain dates she receives visitors, and luckily we were in Bologna on one of these days. You enter the main part of the church and are permitted through a door into the chapel where St Catherine waits silently in her lavishly decorated room.
She was canonized in 1712 and is the patron saint of artists.
She is surrounded by gold and angels.
I have managed to see 2 mummified saints in the last week…what a treat!