Monday, October 03, 2011

Meet the Doctors: St. Therese of Lisieux, Doctrix Mystica


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From Matins of the Feast of St. Therese of Lisieux, Virgin, Doctrix
Online Source: www.breviary.net

Lesson iv

The birthplace and childhood home
of St. Therese at Alençon
Terésia a Jesu Infánte, Alensónii in Gállia, honéstis paréntibus, singulári et assídua erga Deum pietáte conspícuis, orta est.  Inde a prima ætáte, divíno Spíritu prævénta, religiósam vitam ágere cupiébat.  Sério autem promísit, se nihil Deo denegatúram, quod ipse ab ea pétere viderétur : quam promissiónem fidéliter usque ad mortem serváre satégit.  Quinto ætátis anno, matre amíssa, Dei providéntiæ se totam commísit sub vigilánti custódia amantíssimi patris, sororúmque natu majórum : quibus magístris, Terésia ad curréndam perfectiónis viam ut gigas exsultávit.  Novénnis virgínibus ex Ordine sancti Benedícti Lexóviis excolénda tráditur, ibíque in rerum divinárum cognitióne excéllere visa est.  Décimo ætátis anno, arcánus et gravis morbus eam diu cruciávit, a quo prout ipsa enárrat, ope Beatíssimæ Vírginis, quæ eídem subrídens appáruit, et quam, sub título Dóminæ nostræ a Victória, per novendiália invocáre stúduit, divínitus fuit liberáta.  Tunc, angélico fervóre repléta, ad sacrum convívium, in quo Christus súmitur, se diligentíssime præparáre curávit.
Theresa of the Child Jesus was born in Alençon in France.  Her parents were estimable people, well known for their piety and their love of God.  From her earliest childhood, endowed by a special grace of the Holy Ghost, she yearned to enter the religious life.  She promised God with the utmost sincerity that she would deny him nothing he might ask of her.  She kept this promise faithfully to the end of her life, although she had to suffer a great deal to keep it.  Her mother died when Theresa was but five years old.  From then on the child committed herself to the providence of God, under the vigilant care of a most tender father and her elder sisters.  Under their teaching Theresa raced as gayly strong as a young giant along the way of perfection.  At the age of nine she was sent to school at Lisieux to the Benedictine nuns, where she made remarkable progress in her knowledge of divine things.  In her tenth year she was ill for a long time of a serious and mysterious malady.  From this, as she herself relateth, she was delivered only by the power of God himself, through the intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary, who appeared to her with a smiling countenance, and to whom under the title of our Lady of Victories, she was constantly making novenas.  Filled with angelic fervour she prepared herself at this time with the utmost care to receive Christ in the sacred banquet  of her first Holy Communion.
V.  Tu autem, Dómine, miserére nobis.
R.  Deo grátias.
V.  But thou, O Lord, have mercy upon us.
R.  Thanks be to God.
R.  Propter veritátem, et mansuetúdinem, et justítiam : * Et dedúcet te mirabíliter déxtera tua.
V.  Spécie tua et pulchritúdine tua inténde, próspere procéde, et regna.
R.  Et dedúcet te mirabíliter déxtera tua.
R.  Ride on because of the Word of truth, of meekness, and righteousness : * And thy right hand shall teach thee terrible things.
V.  In thy comeliness, yea, in thy beauty, go forth, ride prosperously, and reign.
R.  And thy right hand shall teach thee terrible things.

V.  Jube domne, (Dómine) benedícere.
V.  Vouchsafe, Reverend Father (O Lord), thy blessing.
Benedíctio 5: Christus perpétuæ det nobis gáudia vitæ.
R.  Amen.
Benediction 5: May Christ bestow upon us the joys of life eternal.
R.  Amen.
Lesson v
Ut prímitus eucharístico pane fuit refécta, insatiábilem cæléstis hujus cibi famem hauríre visa est : unde velut inspiráta, Jesum rogábat, ut omnem mundánam consolatiónem in amaritúdinem sibi vérteret.  Inde tenérrimo in Christum Dóminum et in Ecclésiam amóre exæstuans, nihil antíquius hábuit, quam Carmelitárum Excalceatórum Ordinem íngredi, ut sui abnegatióne, suísque sacrifíciis, sacerdótibus, missionáriis, totíque Ecclésiæ opem afférret, et innúmeras ánimas Jesu Christo lucrifáceret : quod jam morti próxima, apud Deum se factúram pollícita est.  Propter ætátis deféctum, multas ad religiósam vitam amplecténdam nacta est difficultátes, quibus tamen incredíbili ánimi fortitúdine superátis, quíndecim annos nata, Lexoviénsem Carmélum felíciter ingréssa est.  Ibi mirábiles Deus in Terésiæ corde ascensiónes dispósuit, quæ, Maríæ Vírginis vitam abscónditam imitáta, quasi hortus irríguus, flores ómnium virtútum germinávit, præcípue vero exímiæ in Deum et in próximum caritátis.
After being refreshed for the first time with the Eucharistic Bread Theresa seemed to develop an insatiable hunger for the celestial food.  Then, as if by inspiration, she asked Jesus to turn all her earthly consolation into bitterness.  After that she burned with a most tender love for Christ the Lord and for his Church.  More than anything in the world she wanted to enter the Order of the Discalced Carmelites, where by self-sacrifice she might assist priests, missionaries and the whole Church, and so gain innumerable souls for Christ Jesus.  All this, she promised God would do for her, even when apparently she lay at the point of death.  Her extreme youth was an obstacle which hindered her entrance upon the religious life.  Even this she overcame by her incredible courage of soul.  She entered Carmel at Lisieux happily at the age of fifteen.  There God fashioned the heart of Theresa in a marvellous way, teaching her to ascend to him step by step.  Imitating the hidden life of the Virgin Mary like a well-watered garden she bore flowers of every virtue, especially an abiding love of God and neighbour.
V.  Tu autem, Dómine, miserére nobis.
R.  Deo grátias.
V.  But thou, O Lord, have mercy upon us.
R.  Thanks be to God.

The Carmel at Lisieux
R.  Dilexísti justítiam, et odísti iniquitátem : *Proptérea unxit te Deus, Deus tuus, óleo lætítiæ.
V.  Propter veritátem, et mansuetúdinem, et justítiam.
R.  Proptérea unxit te Deus, Deus tuus, óleo lætítiæ.
R.  Thou hast loved righteousness and hated iniquity : * Wherefore God, even thy God, hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness.
V.  Because of the Word of truth, of meekness, and of righteousness.
R.  Wherefore God, even thy God, hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness.

V.  Jube domne, (Dómine) benedícere.
V.  Vouchsafe, Reverend Father (O Lord), thy blessing.
Benedíctio 6: Ignem sui amóris accéndat Deus in córdibus nostris.
R.  Amen.
Benediction 6: May God enkindle in our hearts the fire of his holy love.
R.  Amen.
Lesson vi
Quo magis Altíssimo placéret, cum in Sacris Scriptúris mónitum illud legísset : Si quis est párvulus véniat ad me ; párvula in spíritu esse vóluit, et inde filiáli fidúcia Deo, tamquam Patri amantíssimo, se perpétuo trádidit.  Hanc, spirituális infántiæ viam, secúndum Evangélii doctrínam, álios dócuit, speciátim novítias, quas ex obediéntia ad religiosárum virtútum stúdium informándas suscépit, atque ita apostólico zelo repléta, mundo, supérbia infláto et vanitátes diligénti, evangélicæ simplicitátis iter patefécit.  Sponsus autem Jesus eam patiéndi desidério, tam in ánima, quam in córpore, pénitus inflammávit.  Insuper Dei caritátem undequáque negléctam animadvértens, summo dolóre affécta, duóbus ante óbitum annis, Dei miseréntis amóri se víctimam óbtulit.  Tunc, ut ipsa refert, cæléstis ignis flamma vulneráta est : unde caritáte consúmpta, in écstasim rapta, ferventíssime ingéminans : Deus meus, te díligo ; vigínti quátuor annos nata, die trigésima Septémbris, anno millésimo octingentésimo nonagésimo séptimo, ad Sponsum evolávit.  Quod autem móriens promíserat, se perénnem rosárum plúviam in terram demissúram, hoc in cælum recépta, innúmeris miráculis reápse adimplévit et in dies adímplet.  Quam Pius undécimus, Póntifex máximus, Beátis Virgínibus adscríptam, et biénnio post, jubilæo máximo recurrénte, inter Sanctas relátam, peculiárem ómnium Missiónum Patrónam constítuit ac declarávit.
That she might please the most high God to greater degree, when she read in Sacred Scriptures the warning, Whoever is a little one, let him come unto me, she determined to be a little one in spirit.  As such she consecrated herself forever with childlike confidence to God, her most loving Father.  The way of spiritual childhood, following the teachings of the Gospel, she taught to others, especially to the novices who training in the pursuit of religious virtues she undertook in obedience to her superiors.  Overflowing with apostolic zeal she pointed out to a world filled with pride and a love of vanities, the simple way of the Gospels.  Meanwhile Jesus, her spouse, inflamed her with a desire to suffer both in soul and in body.  Moreover, perceiving that the love of God was everywhere rejected, she became filled with grief and two years before her death, offered herself as a victim of love to the merciful God.  She writeth that she was then wounded by a flame of fire from heaven, whereupon she became consumed by love, rapt as it were in ecstasy.  Repeating over and over again the fervent words, My God, I love thee, she passed on to her Spouse on the 30th day of September, in the year 1897, at the age of twenty-four years.  As she was dying she promised that she would let fall upon earth a ceaseless shower of roses.  This promise she hath indeed fulfilled in heaven, and her shower of roses hath continued to this very day.  The Sovereign Pontiff Pius XI added her name to the Virgins declared Blessed and two years later, at the time of the great Jubilee, listed her among the Saints.  He also appointed and declared her Patroness of all the missions.
V.  Tu autem, Dómine, miserére nobis.
R.  Deo grátias.
V.  But thou, O Lord, have mercy upon us.
R.  Thanks be to God.
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