St. Therese, whose
feast we celebrate on the 3rd of October was born to a middle class French
family. Her parents were pious Catholics who have both been declared venerable
by the Church. St Therese and her sisters were blessed therefore to have
parents who were wholly Catholic and who spared no effort to ensure that
their daughters were the recipients of the best Catholic upbringing that
they could give them.
Though the lives of
the members of this family were far from being free of the sorrows and
tribulations of this world nevertheless God blessed the efforts of the
Therese’s parents and they had the joy to see their children growing
year by year closer and closer to God.
Sacrifice was always
the word on the lips of St Therese and her sisters. From an early age
they began the practice of making little sacrifices for God. Their intention
was pure. They sought neither material gain nor glory but simply a desire
to please their Saviour who had made the ultimate sacrifice for them on
While yet a child
Therese was struck down by a severe illness. Despair settled upon her
family as they witnessed the sad condition of heir daughter and sister.
But Our Lady was standing close by ready to heal her chosen one and as
St Therese herself related she was instantly cured when a statue of Our
Blessed Mother smiled at her. Therese had determined at an early age to
become a nun and at fifteen she entered the Carmelite order.
Here she practiced the virtues of what is called “The Little Way”.
St Therese’s “Little Way” consists of making the love
of and trust in God the centre of one’s life. St Therese practiced
the virtues of this “Little Way” to an extraordinary degree.
She always took on the meanest of tasks, was humble and self effacing
and constantly offered up little sacrifices to Our Lord. The unique quality
of St Therese’s life is that she did nothing extraordinary. Hers
was not a life ended under the torture of apostate enemies or the martyrdom
of missionaries. Nor was it the life of a St Vincent De Ferrar whose whole
existence was characterised by an almost unceasing display of thaumaturgical
power. Her life was quiet and filled with self denial and self abnegation.
Yet the Church honours as the greatest saint of our modern times and recommends
to the faithful the imitation of her perfect and simple life and particularly
her “Little Way”. Since her death she has rained miracles
down upon her clients. In particular she seems to grant favours to those
who practice the 24Gloria’s novena. To these clients she sends either
a rose or a symbol of a rose to indicate that the prayer has been favourably
heard by God.
St Therese of The
Child Jesus and the Holy Face pray for us who have recourse to thee.
further information about the Saint, his or her life,
forms of devotion etc please write to:
'Saints' Corner', care of Father C. Daniels,
Society of Saint PiusX,
P.O. Box 878 Roodepoort, 1725 south Africa
or, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
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