Teresa of the Andes experienced from a very young age the grace of communion with Christ, which progressively developed in her with the charm of her youth, full of vitality and joviality, in which she did not lack, as a daughter of her times, the meaning of healthy recreation and sports, and contact with nature. She was a cheerful and dynamic young woman; a young woman open to God.
And God made Christian love blossom in her, a love that was open and deeply sensitive to the problems of her country and the aspirations of the Church.
The secret of her perfection, of course, is love: a great love for Christ, for whom she feels a fascination that leads her to consecrate herself to him forever and to participate in the mystery of his Passion and Resurrection. At the same time, she felt a filial love for the Virgin Mary that moved [Teresa] to imitate [the Virgin’s] virtues.
For her, God is infinite joy.
This is the new hymn of Christian love that springs spontaneously from the soul of this young Chilean woman, in whose glorified face we can sense the grace of transformation in Christ by virtue of a love that is understanding, helpful, humble, and patient. A love that does not destroy human values but elevates and transfigures them.
Yes, as Teresa of the Andes says: “Jesus is our infinite joy”. That is why the new Blessed is a model of evangelical life for the youth of Chile.
She, who came to practice the Christian virtues with heroism, spent the years of her adolescence and youth in the normal environments of a young woman of her time: in her daily life, she practiced piety and ecclesial collaboration as a catechist; at school, among her friends, in works of mercy; and, in moments of solace and recreation.
Her exemplary life is clothed in Christian humanism with the unmistakable seal of lively intelligence, precocious delicacy, of the creative capacity of the Chilean people.
In her is expressed the soul and character of your homeland and the perennial youthfulness of the Gospel of Christ, which enthused and attracted Sister Teresa of the Andes.
Saint John Paul II
Homily, Mass of Beatification of Teresa of the Andes (excerpt)
Parque O’Higgins, Santiago de Chile
Friday 3 April 1987
Translation from the Spanish text is the blogger’s own work product and may not be reproduced without permission.
Featured image: Saint John Paul II waves farewell to the faithful at the conclusion of the Mass of Beatification of Teresa of Jesus of the Andes in Parque O’Higgins, Santiago, Chile, 3 April 1987 | Photo credit: Santuario Teresa de los Andes
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