Join us in this novena to Saints Louis and Zélie Martin
Blessed Chiquitunga led an active apostolic life in Paraguay's Catholic Action movement prior to entering Carmel. In this prayer, she pleads with God: "let this ardor of my heart change into an intense life of union with You, beloved Master, of intense apostolate for Your glory..."
St. Teresa of the Andes meditates on the Carmelite call to a life of perfection: "Perfection of life consists in drawing close to God... What is the life of a Carmelite if not one of contemplating, adoring, and loving God incessantly?"
St. Edith Stein writes an old friend in Switzerland to ask if she could assist to obtain entry permits and visas for herself and her older sister Rosa, who has been an extern sister and outside sacristan at the Carmel of Echt since 1 July 1939.
Writing about perfect love, St. Teresa says that a person "does everything he can for the other's benefit... O precious love that imitates the Commander-in-chief of love, Jesus, our Good!"
"There is no assurance in God's revelations," writes St. John of the Cross. He cites examples from the lives of Saints Peter and Paul where they both need guidance and correction in their ministries.
What gives God joy? St. John of the Cross explains that he rejoices to find "the humility and the nakedness of our heart and in our contempt of worldly things for love of him." Not with sour faces, but with the joy that it gives him.
St. Teresa of the Andes had a lively devotion to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. In this prayer from 1917, she writes, "may your Heart be my refuge, my hope, my consolation, my solitude."
St. John of the Cross' exquisite Poem 7 about the "lone young shepherd" with the pierced heart, is our canticle for the Solemnity of the Sacred Heart of Jesus: "his heart an open wound with love".
Blessed Mary Josephine of Jesus Crucified Catanea was a Discalced Carmelite nun from Naples who had experienced a miraculous healing and had great trust in God's will. We share one of her many famous quotes: "God's will is a kiss of His love..."
On 21 June 1897, two great events occurred in the life of St. Thérèse of Lisieux: she offered a photo album to Mother Marie de Gonzague for her feast day, which contains some of the most memorable photos of Thérèse and the community. And, on the same day she wrote the landmark Letter 247 to seminarian Maurice Bellière, encouraging him in his desire to become a saint. We offer our translation of a key paragraph and explain why our translation varies from others.
In his canticles "For the Love of Jesus Christ", which were published in 1851, the Servant of God Hermann Cohen wrote a summary of his vocation in the dedication pages of the book, closing with a hymn of praise to Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament: "Throw yourselves at His Feet; give Him your heart, and He will bless you."
We recall the death of the "holy nuncio" Nicolás Ormaneto on this date, 18 June 1577 in Madrid. He was the nuncio who favored the Teresian reform and helped it to flourish in the first fifteen years of Teresa's tireless efforts to establish the discalced friars and nuns in Castile. When she mentions her first meeting with Fray Jerónimo Gracián in Beas, she writes that Ormaneto :sent to see him and then gave him authority over the discalced friars and nuns of Castile.:
Léonie Martin died early in the morning on 17 June 1941. We share the last two letters exchanged between Léonie and her sisters Pauline and Céline.
In her autobiography, St. Teresa of Avila writes about "the good that one who practices prayer possesses... I mean mental prayer—glory be to God for this good! If it were not for this good, even though I have little humility, I should not be so proud as to dare speak about mental prayer."
On the feast day of St. Germaine de Pibrac, the nuns of the Carmel of Dijon celebrated the feast day of their prioress, Mother Germaine of Jesus. St. Elizabeth of the Trinity asked her sister for a few favors; one was: "could you also copy the 'Salutaris' by Gounod for me?"
Today we recall Blessed Maria Candida of the Eucharist, whose Optional Memorial is celebrated in Italy. In the Office of Readings we find this excerpt: "What mystery of love is this intimacy with our Beloved! I reflect on this, sometimes with emotion, and give praise to Him Who is Love!"
On 13 June 1942, Saint Titus Brandsma, chained to a Protestant pastor, was loaded onto a cattle car and transported to Dachau. As he left the platform, he said: "nothing bad can happen to me, because the Lord is with me."
For the feast day of her prioress in 1902, St. Elizabeth of the Trinity wrote: "Infinite Being! Depth unsoundable! Delighted, lost in Your Divinity — O Trinity, God thrice-immutable, We see Yourself in Your own clarity."
Joseph Mazurek was born in 1891 at Baranowka, near Lubartow, Poland. He entered the Discalced Carmelite Order in 1908, taking the religious name Alphonsus Mary of the Holy Spirit. He was ordained a priest and appointed as a professor while dedicating himself to the education of youth. Afterward, he served in his Order as prior and bursar. In 1944, after having been arrested by the troops that had invaded his country, he was shot on 28 August at Nawojowa Gora, near Krzeszowice.