St. Therese of Lisieux (The Little Flower)

St. Therese of the Child Jesus

A rose - the symbol of St. Therese
"I will let fall from Heaven...a Shower of Roses" -St. Therese

Born: January 2, 1873 in Alencon, France

Died: September 30, 1897

Canonized: 1925 by Pope Pius XI

Feast Day: October 1

Patron Saint of: aviators, florists, missions, Russia

As a very young child, she told her father, who she was very close to, that she would be a saint. An older sister, Pauline, was the first to act on a call from God and entered the Carmelite Order; she was closely followed by another older sister, Marie. Here sisters' consecration inspired Therese to follow in their footsteps. Because of her age, only nine, the local bishop discouraged Therese's entering the Order. However, at the age of 14, Therese met Pope Leo XIII where she made a personal appeal to be allowed to become a Carmelite nun. Pope Leo XIII responded that that decision should be left to the bishop. When she was 15, that permission was finally given. After Therese's father's death, the last of the four sisters, Celine, also entered the convent.

IAs a Carmelite nun, she spent much of her time "alone with the Alone", in prayer, meditation and penance. Leading this type of cloistered existence, no one, not even the other Carmelite nuns, knew that she had been on the receiving end of special favors and graces from God. During her lifetime, she was inspired to put to paper her life. She named her diary The History of a Soul. It was only after other Carmelite nuns had read her journal had they realized how special she was. Still today, The History of a Soul is widely recognized as one of the most beautiful works on spiritual life. Therese of Lisieux was later to be known as "Little Flower."


Miraculous Invocation to St. Therese

O Glorious St. Thérèse, whom Almighty God has raised up to aid and inspire the human family, I implore your Miraculous Intercession. You are so powerful in obtaining every need of body and spirit from the Heart of God. Holy Mother Church proclaims you “Prodigy of Miracles… the Greatest Saint of Modern Times”. Now I fervently beseech you to answer my petition (mention here) and to carry out your promises of spending Heaven doing good upon earth… of letting fall from Heaven a Shower of Roses. Little Flower, give me you childlike faith, to see the Face of God in people and experiences of my life, and to love God with full confidence. St. Thérèse, my Carmelite Sister, I will fulfill your plea “to be made known everywhere” and I will continue to lead others to Jesus through you. Amen