Love equals sacrifice and sacrifice is probably the most unselfish act of love that can be displayed. It is how Jesus loves us and how He wants us to love each other. Our beloved St. Therese lived her life as a Carmelite nun in the practice of loving others in this way. Every situation was an opportunity for her to devote herself to perfecting her love of others. She knew that the "little way' was the authentic way of following Jesus.
When her Carmelite sisters falsely accused her of breaking a vase, she did not argue or defend herself. Rather, she accepted the blame and asked for forgiveness. It is through Jesus that she found the strength to perform such selfless acts of love and, thereby, deepen her personal relationship with Him.
My friend, the opportunity to follow in the footsteps of our beloved St. Therese is presented to us every day. We can deepen our relationship with Jesus by pausing for a moment and consciously making the decision to love.
The example our Little Flower sets for us is such a blessing! Today I invite you to join me in honoring her. Together we will create a commemorative vase, like the one pictured here, that will symbolize what you and I have come to know as her "little way." It will serve as a special tribute to St. Therese at her National Shrine.
Your special offering will help the Carmelites who serve in over 50 countries. You and other members of the Society continue to make a difference in their lives. Your generosity helps build and support schools, churches, religious education centers, food kitchens, health facilities, pregnancy & maternity clinics, clean water reclamation, justice work, relief centers, farms, agricultural developments and aid for the elderly.
Your loving sacrifice touches people in developing nations such as Burkina Faso, Brazil, Cameroon, Colombia, East Timor, El Salvador, India, Indonesia, Kenya, Mexico, Mozambique, Peru, the Philippines, the Congo, Venezuela, Vietnam, Zimbabwe and right here at home.
You are also helping to educate young people to be Carmelite priests, nuns, brothers, and sisters in these developing countries. You help the Carmelites continue the Little Flower's "shower of roses"-laying the groundwork for others to love as Jesus loves us.
Your participation and offering supports the Carmelites in our ministries to the poor and in the education of Carmelite seminarians throughout the world.
I sincerely appreciate your past kindness and continued support of the Society of the Little Flower and the Carmelite brothers of St. Therese.
Gratefully in the Little Flower,
Fr. Bob Colaresi, O. Carm.