On this day the sacrifice of the future Carmelite and her worthy family would be consummated. When she left the house to take the train, she was accompanied by her mother and brothers and sisters. It was then that her oldest sister Lucia called her and embraced her for the last time, crying bitterly. Juana tried to console Lucia. In making her farewell, she said: “Until heaven! Life is so short!” In reality it was to be so, since Juana would never see Lucia again.
Juana had reached her desired goal, which was found in her long-desired and beloved Carmel. She was in the midst of her sisters who were no less delighted to have her at last with them. In turn, they showed her love and happiness. At the same time they gave thanks to the Lord since He had drawn her to Carmel.
Nevertheless, Juana’s heart was torn by the separation from her family, but God sustained and fortified her at those moments when she offered herself as a pure host in order to sacrifice herself totally and forever for priests and for sinners. She was brought to the cell which had been assigned to her. She was delighted with its poverty and gazing at the wooden Cross she found the motto: “God alone suffices.” These words became the theme of her life.
Eight days later she wrote, “I am in heaven. I am so aware of divine love in my heart that there are moments when I believe I am unable to resist.”
Mother Angelica of the Blessed Sacrament, O.C.D.
Prioress, Carmel of the Holy Spirit of Los Andes
Circular letter written after the death of the saint (excerpts)
Saint Teresa of the Andes entered the Carmel of the Holy Spirit in the township of Los Andes, some 90 kilometers from her home in Santiago de Chile on Wednesday, 7 May 1919.
In her Intimate Spiritual Diary, she recalled the moment when she visited the Prioress and the community in the monastery speakroom and they discovered the significance of the date:
[T]he curtain was drawn back from the grilles and each Sister began to enter and approach the grille. I was kneeling. I considered myself unworthy to be on my feet in the presence of so many saints.
All the Sisters with their veils raised came to greet me with such affection that I was embarrassed. At first my emotion was so great I could scarcely speak, but then afterward we spoke with the greatest confidence. They showed a joy and at times a familiarity among themselves that enchanted me.
They asked me when I was coming. I told them in May. Then one went to look at the calendar to see whether the feast of Saint Joseph or the Holy Spirit came first. It turned out the seventh was the Feast [of the Patronage] of Saint Joseph, and they commended me to him.
Griffin, M D & Teresa of the Andes, S 2021, God, The Joy of My Life: A Biography of Saint Teresa of the Andes With the Saint’s Spiritual Diary, ICS Publications, Washington DC.
Griffin, M, Teresa de los Andes, S 1991, Testimonies to Blessed Teresa of Jesus of the Andes, translated from the Spanish by Griffin, M, Teresian Charism Press, Washington DC.
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