St. Therese Society

a group of college and young professional women in St. Louis seeking to deepen their spirituality and grow in holiness while discerning a possible vocation to religious life

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Location: St. Louis, Missouri

"Charity gave me the key to my vocation. I understood that the Church had a Heart and that this Heart was burning with love. I understood that Love comprised all vocations, that Love was everything, that it embraced all times and places...in a word, that it was eternal! My vocation, at last I have found it...My vocation is Love!"

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Memorial of the Presentation of Mary

God’s love always requires a continuous preparation of freedom on the part of the human being who receives it and today’s feast emphatically shows this preparation. The Blessed Virgin Mary, who is the one who makes the greatest response to the greatest invitation of grace in the history of the world is brought to the Temple by her parents at the age of three. They promised God if they could conceive that they would dedicate their child to the Lord, but they waited to this age before presenting her lest she miss her family.

The Presentation of Mary in the Temple is a most fitting feast to show our thanksgiving, solidarity and support for the cloistered life because all these important themes are united together in her presentation. She goes apart into the enclosure as it were to prepare herself in spousal love to be the Bride of Christ and the Mother of the Redeemer. She spends her time in contemplation nurturing the life of grace with which God will invite her to the singular response of being his mother. She prepares herself for a life long encounter with her Son and begins the long process of keeping everything and pondering them in her heart.

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In the wonderment of her splendid intuition, Saint Therese of the Child Jesus declares: ‘I understood that the Church had a Heart and that this Heart was ablaze with love. I understood that Love alone enabled the Church’s members to act . . . Yes, I found my place in the Church . . . at the heart of the Church, my Mother, I will be Love’. (Verbi Sponsa, 7)
Cloistered religious are the heart of the Church because they truly show us the complete surrender and concentration of love. They are enclosed not because they have lost something, but because they have found Him.
On this feast of the Presentation of Mary, each member of the Church should look to the contemplatives to see an example of this spousal love for Christ after the example of Our Lady. Like her, we should open the door for Christ knocking there, invite Him to our house and rightly spend each day rejoicing in His presence.
--Fr. Brian Mullady, OP

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