St. Teresa of Avila

Today’s memorial is of St. Teresa of Avila. She was a virgin and a doctor of the Church, noted for her writings in spiritual theology. Pope Paul VI gave her the title of “Doctor,” back in 1970.

In today’s Office of Readings, we read the following from her writings (my translation from the Italian):

“He who has  Jesus Christ as his friend and follows a captain so wonderful as is he is able to endure all things. In fact, Jesus never diminishes the help and strength he gives, for he sincerely loves us. I have always known and even now I see clearly that we are not able to please God and receive such great graces from him except through the hands of the most holy humanity of Christ……”

That is what I would call a succinct definition of contemplation: a relationship of friendship and love(“I no longer call you slaves, but friends…) with Jesus, whom we follow into prayer; a relationship of love flowing from God himself mediated by Jesus’ humanity and ours. Knowing and “seeing” God.

Even the most contemplative among us experience the rare graces of ecstasy via our human nature and the humanity of Jesus. That is why even the most active among us can be great contemplatives, e.g., Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta, as well as St. Teresa of Avila.

About Deacon Bob

Moderator: Deacon Bob Yerhot of the Diocese of Winona-Rochester, Minnesota.
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