This great lay mystic reveals that the Gates of Heaven are actually wide open; but that souls choose not to go there unless they are perfect. If they are wicked (in mortal sin), they hurl themselves into Hell. If they die in the State of Grace, but with sins yet unexpiated, they hasten to the appropriate place in Purgatory. St. Catherine says that the sins we expiate in this life are paid for at a very small price indeed compared to what we will pay in Purgatory. A classic!
The Spiritual Doctrine of St. Catherine of Genoa is one of the most unusual Catholic books ever written. The subject of this book explains what the spirit of Christ opposed to the spirit of the world can mean in the life of a soul. St. Catherine of Genoa, a member of an illustrious Italian noble family, was married but had no children. She and her husband worked in a hospital in Genoa, of which she later became director. This volume contains three separate works: The life and Doctrine of St. Catherine of Genoa, the Spiritual Dialogue and the Treatise on Purgatory. The latter alone is worth the price of the entire book and sets the theme for all three writings. St. Catherine sees the entire Christian life as one of purgation. If the cleansing of the soul in this life is not completed it is simply continued in the next. The Treatise on Purgatory explains the attitude of the Poor Souls, their sufferings of Purgatory and those of Hell. The Spiritual Doctrine of St. Catherine of Genoa teaches us that the only truly important progress made in this life is the development of the human soul and that all else is insignificant in comparison. St. Catherine demonstrates that what we do with our precious allotment of time will determine what we shall be for all eternity.