Tuesday, August 12, 2008

This story is said by St Therese' sister, Celine, and refers to the time both sisters shared in the Convent. This particular fragment showing us Therese in the last months of her illness in great suffering but still retaining warm, loving and light-hearted personality.

During the winter 1896-1897, in order to protect Therese's feet from the cold, Mere Marie de Gonzague, our Prioress, gave her an order of obedience to use a foot-warmer. This would enable my little sister who was already in a decline to have a warm pair of alpargates (sandals worn by Carmelites) always at hand. But the Saint never used this dispensation unless the necessity was great - and even then, only because it was Reverend mother's wish. Consequently, except when she was unusually chilled, Therese allowed the foot-warmer to cool off, much to my evident displeasure. "Other souls, at death," she observed in her light-hearted way, "present themselves before the heavenly court weighted down by their instruments of penance, whereas I shall appear there holding up my chaufferette (foot-warmer). Never mind, it is only love and obedience that count..."

taken from "A Memoir of My Sister St Therese", by Sr Genevieve (Celine Martin).