Friday, December 15, 2006

Spiritual Roses from Story of a Soul - Little Acts of Penance

Welcome to my series featuring excerpts from the book that started it all - Story of a Soul. I'm calling the series Spiritual Roses from Story of a Soul and I hope that you will visit here every day for an inspirational message from our dear little saint.

"With a nature such as my own, had I been reared by Parents without virtue or even if I had been spoiled by the maid, Louise, as Celine was, I would have become very bad and perhaps have even been lost. But Jesus was watching over His little fiancee; He had willed that all turn out for her good, even her faults that, corrected very early, stood her in good stead to make her grow in perfection. As I began to think seriously (which I did when still very little), it was enough for one to tell me a thing wasn't good and I had no desire to repeat it twice.

I see with pleasure that in Mama's letters I gave her great consolation when growing up. Having nothing but good example around me, I naturally wanted to follow it. This is what she wrote in 1876: 'Even Therese wants to do little acts of penance at times. She's a charming child, very alert, very lively, but she is very sensitive. Celine and she are very fond of each other, and are sufficient unto themselves for passing the time. Every day as soon as they've eaten dinner Celine takes her little rooster; she catches Therese's little hen with one swoop of her hand, something I can never do, but she is so lively she gets it in one bound. Then they come with their little pets and sit before the fireplace and amuse themselves for long hours at a time. (It was little Rose who gave me the hen and the rooser, and I gave the rooster to Celine).' "

Excerpted from Story of a Soul, ICS Publications, Third Edition, page 24. This book and many others along with a line of holy cards and photos of St. Therese imported from her monastery in Lisieux can be found at my webstore called The Little Way.

St. Therese, open our hearts to your little way. Teach us to throw ourselves into the arms of Our Lord, casting away all doubt and fear and accepting all that He sends us as graces for the salvation of our souls.

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