Autobiography of Saint Therese of Lisieux: The Story of a Soul
Therese was born in France in 1873. Therese was the pampered daughter of a mother who had wanted to be a saint and a father who had wanted to be monk. They had nine children and the five children who lived were all daughters who were close all their lives. When Therese was four and a half years old her mother died of breast cancer. Her sixteen year old sister Pauline became her second mother, which made the second loss even worse when Pauline entered the Carmelite convent five years later. A few months later, Therese became so ill with a fever that people thought she was dying. When Therese saw her sisters praying to statue of Mary in her room, Therese also prayed. She saw Mary smile at her and suddenly she was cured. She tried to keep it a secret but people found out and asked her many questions about Mary. When she refused to answer questions, they said she made the whole thing up.
By the time she was eleven years old she had developed the habit of mental prayer. She would find a place between her bed and the wall and in that solitude think about God, life, eternity. When her other sisters, Marie and Leonie, left to join religious orders, Therese was left alone with her last sister Celine and her father. Therese was very spoiled and never did any chores at home. Therese wanted to enter the Carmelite convent to join Pauline and Marie. On Christmas in 1886, Therese hurried home from church. In France, young children left their shoes by the hearth at Christmas, and then parents would fill them with gifts. Her sister Celine didn't want Therese to grow up so they continued to leave presents in Therese's baby shoes. Her father then told her that this would be the last year that this would happen. She would normally start to cry, but this time she didn’t. The following year she entered the convent, she referred to this Christmas as her conversion.
When the superior of the Carmelite convent refused...
Please join StudyMode to read the full document