Ugh. I don't know that today is the day for the humorous post I had planned. I'm going to save that one for a more appropriate occasion, I think. Today is the feast of St. Therese of Lisieux, so why don't we revel in her for a moment?
I *love* that we have photographs of St. Therese. She seems so real to me, and seriously, she's so adorable. I know that she was a nun, and that she felt called to the religious life from an age at which most of us were busy flirting with boys and not thinking about even attending Mass let along dedicating our lives to the Lord in such a radical way, but I relate to her very much. I've read her autobiography, The Story of a Soul (although it's been some time and I really need to re-read it, future Catholic Book Club book!) and her writing is so sweet and honest. One can't help but feel drawn to her and her struggles to find her way in her family, in the world, and in her vocation.
I think that her cause really caught fire precisely because of what I mentioned before: her relatability. She's very likeable, and the way that she struggled to find her way in the monastery is something we all understand in whatever vocation we are called to.
I love the anecdote in her memoir in which she discusses this one nun who really gets under her skin. This other nun's habits are so grating to her that Therese uses it as an opportunity to put this "Little Way" into full effect by curbing her reactions in a charitable fashion and offering up her interior annoyance. I mean, we all have these opportunities on a daily basis (and likely, provide them to others as well, ha!). Do we respond as St. Therese did, or do we give in to our baser instincts?
I'm going to dig into Shirt of Flame tonight in honor of St. Therese, and to read about another soul who is inspired by this small nun who died over a hundred years ago. Her legacy certainly lives on.
Magnificat magazine has a feature by Heather King (author of Shirt of Flame) about St. Therese this month, it was quite interesting. Heather talks about meeting a woman who is a member of the Order of Consecrated Virgins, one of the oldest forms of consecrated life in the Church, who she compares to St. Therese. This response to God's call to love in silence and contemplation is something I just can't read enough about, I find it so moving. *Really* quite fascinating. Mike tells me he's glad I decided not to :) but I did consider serving the Lord as a religious sister or consecrated layperson. It's a freeing feeling to not be afraid of such a radical response to God's love, and I have to admit it: I love silence. Having young children means that my house isn't silent, but I do what I can to maintain a domestic monastery. :)
So tonight I plan on my St. Therese reading, and I'm kind of hoping that someone sends me a rose. Any takers? :)
Great post, Tiffany!! St. Therese was wonderful & I love her Little Way.ReplyDelete
Thanks Jane!! And me too. :) I have a little set of sacrifice beads based on the Little Way. I really should pull those out. :0Delete
Dear Catholic Librarian,ReplyDelete
Here's a literary "rose" from the Saga for you... sorry it's a day late but no less fragrant. (Yeah, there are Carmelites in it, along with hidden treasures, cable TV, old books, and all sorts of things...)
"A major fire doesn’t usually evoke such swift action from the diocesan Ordinary,” Father Caster said to the Cardinal.
“Ah, but that’s because he knew the situation needed such swift attention. ... Such things are not taken lightly – not at this time of our lives, Jonathan! I’ve prayed about this, and thought about plans. My staff has standing orders about such things, and they spread the word where it was needed. We have the most wonderful secret weapon for such cases...”
“Hold on – I know what you’re going to say. The Carmelites.”
“Exactly! Oh, the glory of such women! So militant, so orderly, so fierce at prayer...” The Cardinal sighed with delight. “And of course the Ordinary of the affected place was informed too – but I wanted to speak with him before telling you anything. ... Father Emilio managed to learn where things were happening, so he sent out the word to Gary and others.”
“Gary... you mean Archbishop Martens – my archbishop?”
“Precisely. And he, being a bold man, and worthy of his office, he did exactly what needed to be done. He woke you up and sent you to the hospital – while he went to the scene of the action.”
“He went – to... ‘Fritz Logistics’? While it was burning?”
“Yes he did, and there he performed the rite of exorcism. He risked a lot, doing such a thing in public, and in such hazardous conditions, but it was necessary. He told me he was quite certain diabolical forces were at work there – even the firemen knew there was something sinister about that fire..."
[PJFIte Milites Audaces]
Also: Thanks for your prayers; still have a special intention, if you have room in your list.
Peter, Thank you!! And I absolutely have room on my prayer list for you; you're officially added. :)Delete