Tuesday, February 1, 2011

The Spirituality of St. Therese of Lisieux

"It’s a terrible thing to admit, but saying the Rosary takes it out of me more than any hair shirt … Try as I will, I cannot meditate on the mysteries of the Rosary. I just cannot fix my mind on them" —St. Therese of Lisieux, Story of a Soul

(Note: Yet this great Saint kept on with her Community Rosary)

"In my helplessness the Holy Scriptures and the Imitation [of Christ by Thomas a Kempis] come to my aid … But it is the Gospels more than anything else which hold my attention during meditation."

“Sometimes, when I read spiritual treatises, in which perfection is shown with a thousand obstacles in the way and a host of illusions round about it, my poor little mind soon grows weary, I close the learned book, which leaves my head splitting and my heart parched, and I take the Holy Scriptures. Then all seems luminous, a single word opens up infinite horizons to my soul, perfection seems easy.
“I see that it is enough to realize one’s nothingness, and give oneself wholly, like a child, into the arms of the good God. Leaving to great souls, great minds, the fine books I cannot understand, I rejoice to be little because ‘only children, and those who are like them, will be admitted to the heavenly banquet’.”

“Love proves itself by deeds, so how am I to show my love? Great deeds are forbidden me. The only way I can prove my love is by scattering flowers and these flowers are every little sacrifice, every glance and word, and the doing of the least actions for love…”

“I leave to great souls and lofty minds the beautiful books I cannot understand, much less put into practice and I rejoice that I am little because children alone and those who resemble them will be admitted to the heavenly banquet. I am glad that there are many mansions in the Kingdom of God, because if there were only those whose description and whose road seem to me incomprehensible, I could never enter there.”

“How happy I am to realize that I am little and weak, how happy I am to see myself so imperfect”

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