Quote of the day, 30 August: François de Sainte-Marie, OCD

When Christ, in his sermons and his parables, described the Christian’s manner of behavior, he sketched for us a portrait of the face of She who was the daughter of light par excellence. Further, his deeds and his acts complete the refinement of Mary’s appearance.

To look at Jesus is, in a way, to look at his Mother. Didn’t she give him his human face at the same time that he fashioned her in the image of God? In this admirable exchange, the resemblance of these two beings was consummated.

Raphael, 1483-1520; The Virgin and Child
The Virgin and Child
Raphael (1483–1520) (after)
Oil on canvas
Royal Cornwall Museum

Transformed in her Son, Mary has nothing of her own beyond this transparency, this limpidity that permits the soul of Jesus to be reflected in her with all his perfections, to imprint himself on her in a lively manner. To look at Christ living and praying, we learn to know his Mother better.

François de Sainte-Marie, O.C.D.

Visage de la Vierge (Face of the Virgin)


Father François de Sainte-Marie was a prolific French Discalced Carmelite author and editor of the mid-20th century. He is best known for his tireless efforts to publish the critical edition of the autobiographical manuscripts of Saint Thérèse of Lisieux in 1957, which we commonly refer to as Story of a Soul.

A review of Father François’ publications in the library of the Teresianum in Rome is impressive, to say the least. Translations from the Latin, original works in French, German, and English all testify to the creative genius of this friar.

Father François de Sainte-Marie’s fruitful ministry was tragically cut short by accidental death when he drowned in the Loire river 30 August 1961.

de Sainte-Marie, F 1948, Visage de la Vierge, translated from the French by Carmelite Quotes, Librairie du Carmel, Paris.

Translation from the French text is the blogger’s own work product and may not be reproduced without permission.

Featured image: Christ teaching his disciples is one of the images preserved in the magnificent stained glass of Notre Dame de Chartres Cathedral. Image credit: Fr. Lawrence Lew, OP (Some rights reserved)

2 thoughts on “Quote of the day, 30 August: François de Sainte-Marie, OCD

Add yours

  1. I appreciate, once again, your language skills and thank you for sharing this quotation from Fr. Francois and the biographical information.

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