St. Thérèse wrote one of her last poems for Sr. Thérèse of St. Augustine, the nun who displeased her the most. Today this poem teaches us that we can rest in the shade of the tree called “love” and savor its fruit: "abandonment".
“Wait for the Lord; be strong, and let your heart take courage; wait for the Lord!” urged the psalmist. St. Thérèse turns to her Guardian Angel as she responds: “With your celestial aid, in peace I await the other life, the joys that will last forever.”
If the psalmist prayed “for God alone my soul waits,” then St. Thérèse repeated that heartfelt cry with greater fervor: “My only peace, my only happiness, my only love is you, Lord!”
St. Thérèse described her sister Céline as someone who found God in all of nature, everywhere. In the poem, “Canticle of Céline”, which Thérèse wrote for her sister, Céline sings, “in Him I found peace forever!”
On the night before He died, Jesus spoke plainly to the disciples. St Thérèse notes that Jesus was “speaking without parable” to them. To the one who keeps God’s word, Jesus says: “We want him to remain, filled with peace, in our Love!”
“Joseph got up, took the child and his mother, and went,” is one section of St. Joseph’s theme music in the Gospels. St. Thérèse knows how to sing that song, too, in Carmelite style: “Joseph, O tender Father, protect Carmel!”
“Children, obey your parents in the Lord,” says St. Paul. St. Thérèse was a model of obedience to her father, St. Louis Martin. Speaking in the third person as she writes about their relationship, Thérèse reminds her father: “it was always your hand that guided her. O Papa! remember…”
“Do not worry about tomorrow,” Jesus said. Thérèse took his advice and wrote, “if I think about tomorrow, I fear my fickleness. I feel sadness and worry rising up in my heart.” Her solution to this problem? Living “just for today.”
In this, the 125th anniversary year of the death of Saint Thérèse of Lisieux, each day we will share excerpts from her poetry that reveal her eminent doctrine and passionate desire "to love Jesus and to make him loved" as a Discalced Carmelite nun.
The notorious criminal, Henri Pranzini was executed on this date, 31 August 1877; St. Thérèse of the Child Jesus called Pranzini "her child". Today we read an excerpt from Céline's testimony at the Diocesan Process of Beatification, where she describes Thérèse's zeal for the salvation of Pranzini's soul.
Keenly aware of Europe's urgent situation, in 1939 God prompted St. Edith Stein to offer herself to "the Heart of Jesus as a sacrifice of propitiation for true peace." We examine her request in the light of Carmelite spirituality and the examples of Discalced Carmelite martyrs who made similar offerings in centuries past.
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 1921 Pauline and Marie Martin - Sister Agnès of Jesus and Sr. Marie of the Sacred Heart - had the happy fortune to visit their childhood home in Lisieux, a rare privilege, although Pauline doesn't give the reasons for the honor. But she describes the visit in detail...
The Saint Louis Post-Dispatch reports: "The towering dome of St. Peter's was alight with a multitude of tallow torches last night while all Rome celebrated the sanctification of the Blessed Sister Therese of the Infant Jesus, who was made a saint yesterday with all the mystic solemnity and splendor the Roman Catholic Church could command."
After the healing of St. Thérèse on 13 May, her sister Pauline wrote to Thérèse to offer words of gratitude, compassion, and encouragement. "What a joy to see you well! How good the Blessed Virgin really is!"
In her autobiographical manuscripts, St. Thérèse describes her healing on this date at age 10: "All of a sudden the Blessed Virgin appeared beautiful to me... then all of my pains faded away..."
In a letter written for Céline's 22nd birthday, St. Thérèse explains why God didn't create her sister to be an angel in heaven: "it is because He wants you to be an angel on earth... He wants angel-apostles, and He has created an unknown little flower, who is named Céline, with this intention in mind...."
Already in his first encyclical, John Paul II highlighted the mystery of merciful love contemplated in Christ the Redeemer: "'God is love'... This revelation of love is also described as mercy; and in man's history this revelation of love and mercy has taken a form and a name: that of Jesus Christ."
On this day in 1888, young Thérèse Martin entered the Carmel of Lisieux. Her sister Marie wrote that day to their father, St. Louis Martin: "O best of fathers, how accountable we would be if we didn’t become saints, and if we didn’t follow in the footsteps of your generosity… "
St. Thérèse of Lisieux wrote a small play about the flight into Egypt and St. Joseph has a speech in the play about God's goodness and mercy. God "will magnificently reward not only the striking things done for Him, but also the simple desires to serve Him and love Him, because He sees everything."