Friday, December 24, 2010


"...the time came for her to have her child, and she gave birth to her firstborn son" (Luke 2: 6).

(Christ) I am the Lover of purity, and the Giver of all holiness. I seek a pure heart, and there is the place of My rest. Make ready for me a large supper room, and I will make the pasch with Thee (Mark 24: 15)

Perhaps Jesus wished to show me the world before his first visit that I could more freely choose the way I should promise to follow him.

God, the divine Guest of our hearts, knows our poverty, all He asks, and expects to find, is an empty tabernacle.

In spite of all the graces Heaven was showering upon me, I was far from deserving them. I had a great desire for virtue, but all that I did was full of imperfections. i was so sensitive that i was a very great trial to others; it was useless to reason with me, for I was powerless to correct this fault. How could I expect to be received at Carmel?  It would need a miracle to make me grew up once and for all, and God worked this little miracle on a date i shall never forget: December 25, 1886. The newborn Child turned my darkness into light; having for my sake become small and weak, he made me strong and brave; He armed me with His own weapons, and after that I ran my course  like a giant (Ps 18), going from victory to victory. The fountain of my tears was dried up, and very rarely flowed again.  This is how I received the grace of conversion. They still treated me at home like a baby, filling my shoes with presents and putting them by the fire-place on Christmas Eve. My father had always shared in my  delight as I drew out each gift, but this year Our Lord wished to cure me of my childishness. As I went up to my room after midnight Mass, I heard my father say: "Therese is too big a girl for such a nonsense; I hope this will be the last year." The words cut me to the heart, and Celine, knowing my sensitiveness, begged me not to go down at once, as I would be sure to cry; but I was no longer the same,  Jesus had changed my heart. I went down to the dining-room as though nothing had happened, and gaily pulled out the presents one by one, my father joining in the merriment. Celine thought that she was dreaming, but the fact remained that I had found once more the fortitude I had lost at the age of four and a half. On that blessed night the third period of my life opened, the most beautiful and full of graces. The work I had attempted for years, was done in an instant by Our Lord, who accepted my good will. Like the Apostles, I could say: Master we have laboured all the night, and have taken nothing (Luke 5:5), but Our Lord did more for me than He did for them, for He cast the net Himself and drew it in full of fish, and changed me into a fisher of souls. Charity took possession of my soul and filled me with the spirit of self-forgetfulness, and from that time I was always happy. 

...true greatness is found in one's soul and not in one's name. (...) Thus, it is in heaven that we will find our true value. Then, "each of us will receive our just reward from God." He who has chosen to be poorest and most forgotten for the sake of Jesus on earth, will become the first, the noblest, and the richest.

i experienced several transports of love; one during my novitiate, lasted a whole week, during which time I seemed to make use of a borrowed body, and felt far away from this world, which was veiled from my sight. Yet I was not burned by real flame, and could enjoy these delights without hope of their breaking my hold upon life; whereas if other experience (see March 29) of which I told you, had been prolonged for a few instants, I would have died....Alas! I came back on earth, and immediately my soul become a prey to dryness of spirit.

Speaking of the Communion of Saints, she said: "With the virgins we shall be virgins, with the doctors we shall be doctors, with the martyrs we shall be martyrs, for all the Saints are our kindred; but those who followed the way of spiritual childhood will always keep the charm of children. From my earliest days God has given me the conviction that I would die young. (Novissima Verba)  

Opening the Gospel my eyes fell upon these words: Going up into a mountain he called to him whom he would (Mark 3:13). These words sum up the mystery of my vocation and of my whole life, and above all the mystery of the special graces bestowed on my soul. He does not choose those who are worthy, but those whom He is pleased to call. As St Paul says, quoting Exodus: I will have mercy on whom i will have mercy (Exod. 33:19). So then it is not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of God that showeth mercy (Rom 9:16) 

Picture represents 'Concert of Angels and Nativity' by Matthias Gruenewald