Cardinal Seán's Blog

Cardinal Seán shares his reflections & experiences.

St. Therese of “The Little Flower” – Following Her Road Map & Compass To God

Hello everyone. I hope you had a restful and enjoyable weekend.

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Little Flower”

Today was a joyous and exciting day here in Rome.

It began with a meeting and meal at our Titular Church, Santa Maria della Vittoria The Church of St. Mary of the Victory, with the Friars of the order of the Discalced Carmelite Fathers. It was a very nice gathering and wonderful to break bread with the good Friars. We saw the Church early in the day and they had dressed it up beautifully and there was great anticipation and enthusiasm. Everyone was looking forward the ceremony and Mass this evening.

We chose this date to scheduled the Titular ceremony and Mass to correspond to the Feast of St. Therese, who is referred to as the Little Flower. She was a Carmelite Nun who died very young after not even 10 years of religious life. But, she was a great spiritual writer and was named a doctor of the Church. There was great devotion to her soon after her death. The Church is very famous because of the statue of St. Teresa of Avila, who was the patron saint of St.Therese.

In my homily today, I refer to the three Teresas, the Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta, who was named after the Little Flower, St. Therese.who was named after St. Teresa of Avila. These were three extraordinary women in the Church. They lived at very different times in the history of the Church. But all three had enormous impacts on the life of the Church.

These three women made such an incredible impact on their contemporaries..and made such an important contribution to the life of the Church. Hopefully they will continue to inspire many Catholics with the example of their lives, their spirituality that theyve taught, their sense of service, and their passion for the poor.

In the Church today, in most parishes, so much of the leadership of the parish and the ministries are carried on by women – both religious and lay women – as catechists, youth ministers, working with the elderly and so much more. Anyone who doubts the important role of women in the Church is not looking carefully at what the reality is. The Church could never function without women and their leadership, work and efforts.

St. Teresa of Avila was, to a great part, responsible for the reform of the entire Church in Spain. She was also a great literary figure and a great poet, as well as a great writer. She was also a doctor of the Church in other words, her spiritual writings reflect a very sound theology.

St. Therese was a cloistered Carmelite Sister who had such devotion for the missions that she was named Patron Saint of the Missions. Her writings have been inspirational to generations of Catholics.

Mother Teresa, of course, is well known for the wonderful work that her Sisters do for the poorest of the poor. Even here in Rome we were able to see the shelter that they run for the homeless, that was established by Mother Teresa at the request of Pope John Paul II. Wherever one goes in the world, especially on the poorest areas, youll find the Missionaries of Charity, who are the community of Mother Teresa of Calcutta.

Santa Maria della Vittoria is probably one of the most beautiful Baroque Churches in Rome. The quality of the statuary and the paintings is exceptional, museum quality actually. The Church has been very well maintained over the years. It certainly is a true jewel.

I learned an interesting story about Santa Maria della Vittoria while I was here. One of the very first Cardinals to have this Church as Titular was an uncle of Napoleon Bonaparte. Apparently Napoleon wanted to take the famous Bernini statue of St. Teresa back to Paris with him sometime during their invasion. His uncle stopped him, fortunately, otherwise today that famous Bernini statue would probably be in the Louvre instead of being in our Church in Rome.

We left for the ceremony and Mass at approximately 6:00 and we were given a one-car police escort, which as you can imagine produced an interesting adventure of a drive through the tight streets and traffic of Rome lol. Im certain that we would have made it there safely without the escort, but I believe that the escort is a courtesy and tradition organized by the Vatican. We had a bit of a chuckle on the way there, because the officer in the passenger seat of the police escort was leaning out the window of the cruiser and had in is arm a long red stop wand that he was waving at cars, scooters and pedestrians to move them out of our path. It was quite a scene as he waved the wand at everyone he passed, nearly actually striking cars and pedestrians alike.

We pulled up to the front of the Church and there was a large crowd of photographers, paparazzi, snapping pictures as soon as we pulled up. Im not sure where they were all from, but a guess well find out soon enough. There were also a number of very impressive uniformed Carabinieri officers of the Italian military police. Two of the officers were in ceremonial dress and stood at attention inside the Church during the entire Mass.

After we arrived and I exited the car, I walked up the steps of Santa Maria della Vittoria. The ceremony began immediately at the front door as the rector, Fr. Stefano, presented a Crucifix for me to kiss as a sign of reverence. I then went into the Church and prayed before the Blessed Sacrament, then went to the sacristy to be vested for Mass. We all processed from the outside, back into the Church. At the beginning of the Mass, the official proclamation was read by the Rector, establishing me as the Titular.

It was a very moving ceremony and Mass. I was gratified to see so many people from the local community, as well as priests living in Rome, and the different Bishops who joined usincluding Cardinal Sodano, the former Vatican Secretary of State, Bishop Calderon from Spain, who is here working at the Vatican, Archbishop Schleck, who belongs to the Holy Cross Fathers, and Fr. Hugh Cleary, the Father General of the Holy Cross Fathers, who was also once at Stonehill College. I was also pleased to see the Paulist Fathers at the Mass. Peter Martin from Dedham also joined us…he’s been working here in Rome for anumber of years in a position at the United States Embassy to the Holy See.

There were many more who came to the Mass and I realize that run the risk of forgetting someone if I try to mention everyoneso Id like to thank everyone who cameI was honored by, and grateful for, everyones presence. There were also a number of people from Boston in attendance, including the Order of Malta group. It was also wonderful to see so many parishioners from the area who joined us for the ceremonies.

I would like to take this opportunity to share with you my thoughts and reflections about “The Little Flower,” which I shared with those who were able to be with us at Santa Maria della Vittoria:

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Mass for the Feast of St. Therese of Liseaux

I come to you as a Cardinal sent here by Pope Benedict to be your priests and to link you and the people of Rome to the Holy Father and his ministry as Bishop of Rome.

Like the Portuncula in Assisi, Our Lady of the Angels, this precious jewel of Santa Maria della Vittoria is tiny but exceedingly beautiful. The beauty of the place calls us to a nostalgia for God, the source of all beauty.

The Carmelite Friars tend to the pastoral needs of this community with such devotion and generosity. I am so grateful to be associated with you and your people. I assure you of my friendship and my prayers.

In my life there are three Teresas: Mother Teresa of Calcutta whose patroness was St. Therese, the little flower, whose Patron was St. Teresa of Avila, the big flower.

St. Teresa of Avila was a charming woman whose teachings lead her to be declared a doctor of the Church. The Bernini statue brings so many to this ChurchSt. Teresa who says to us, Nada te turbe, nada le espante. Solo Dios basta. Only God is enoughnothing else will do. Here in the beauty of this Church we see a reflection of Gods beauty and love.

It was here that the young Therese Martin came to pray during here visit to Rome described in her autobiography. It is such a joy to take possession of this Church on her feast day.

St. Therese promised to spend her time in heaven doing good on earth. We ask her to intercede for us, for this community, for the Holy Father, for the Church of Boston and for my ministry there.

The saints are Gods masterpiecestheir lives brighten the landscape and point the way to the Kingdom of God. We are here tonight to rejoice in one such masterpiece and bask in the light that emanates from her life and witness.

The Little Flower has always captured peoples imaginations. The beautiful young man who dies of consumption like Mimi in La Boheme. Today I would invite you to reflect on the message of her life and spirituality for us as we prepare to begin a new millennium.

The first thing that strikes me about St. Therese is her family. She was a little flower, but planted firmly in a beautiful garden, an exceptional garden. At first glance, the Martin family appears to be the typical bourgeois family that is often characterized by a little snobbishness, hypocrisy, materialism and a propensity for social climbing. None of these things could be attributed to them. But closer examination reveals that their home was a home where God reigned. The Holy Fathers often talk of the Catholic family as a domestic Church. At the Martins housethe only thing missing was the steeple. They were all so committed to the Lord that they nurtured and shared each others spirituality. Just as we see families that possess a great musical talentlike the Trapp Family or a penchant for politics like the Kennedysthe Martin family was focused on God and became a family of saints.

Thereses parents were exceptional Catholics. Both of them had considered a religious vocation early on but discovered their vocation in married life and of the nine children, the youngest was Marie Francoise Therese Martin who later became Sister Therese of the Child Jesus and of the Holy Face, O.C.D.

Four of the older children died in infancy and Thereses mother, Zelie Martin, a lace-maker, died before Therese reached her 5th birthday.

We can see that Therese was born into a family that immediately served her as an image of heaven. Her family, with its customs and its relationships, acted as a kind of picture book for her, in which she learned to spell out the reality of the Christian faith. Everything in the book was concrete, speaking directly and intelligibly for it was composed in the simple language that God has devised for His children. The world is wholly sacramental, its appearance an effective symbol of the Spirit of God, working through appearances and matter.

At the center of her family was the Father, Louis Martin, a watchmaker. Therese loved him, almost idolized him. At a glance, she saw in him the unbreakable unity of love and authority. She looked toward her father, her father looked toward God and so she learned to look to God. Therese was still quite small when her father took her to Church.

During the sermon, he bent over and whispered: Listen carefully, my little queen, he is talking about your patron saint. Therese writes: I paid great attention, but I looked at my father more than at the preacher. His face was so eloquent to me. Many times his eyes filled with tears that he tried in vain to keep back. When he was listening to the eternal truths, it was as though he no longer belonged to this world. As she knelt beside her father during evening prayers, she says: I only needed to look at him to learn how the saints pray.

St. Therese was a precocious child. She could read and write at age three. To me, one of the most telling incidents recorded from her childhood involved the public execution of a criminal named Pranzini in 1887 when Therese was 14. Therese had a great desire to save souls. Hearing about an unrepentant sinner about to be executed, Therese prays and makes many sacrifices on his behalf. Therese went to the newspaper and read that Pranzini had been unrepentant up until the moment before placing his head in the noosethen, suddenly, he had taken hold of the crucifix held out to him by the priest and kissed the wounds of Christ three times before he died. Therese felt a deep joy over the conversation of her first child of grace, and her desire to bring people to God grew and grew.

It is no wonder that she was named patroness of missionaries. From her cloister, she was close to missionaries and filled with zeal for souls and concern for people in need.

Many people are surprised that St. Therese was named a Doctor of the Church this month in Rome. People think of Doctors who are great theologianslike Thomas Aquinas, Dun Scotus, a wise, old bearded creaturewhy the Little Flower, a 24-year-old cloistered nun?

We often get caught up in anecdotes and examples of Thereses love and virtue, and we fail to see that Thereses sanctity and vocation are inexorably linked to a theological mission.

In the Mass of her canonization, Pius XI explains how God has spoken to the Church in her life. I quote: Above all, she nourished heart and soul with the inspired Word of God, on which she meditated assiduously, and the Spirit of Truth taught her what He hides from the wise and the prudent and reveals to the humble. Indeed, God enriched her with an exceptional wisdom so that she was enabled to trace out for others a sure way of salvation. The Holy Father makes frequent reference to, a new message and a new mission, and new model of sanctity. The Pope speaks of her as a master in matters of spiritual teaching. Hers is a modern asceticism based not so much on external acts of mortification, but a rigorous internal discipline which allowed her to pick up a pin off the floor with the love and devotion of someone performing the most challenging act of piety. How many times do I pick up a pin now saying, Jesus let me pick up this pin with the same love that St. Therese had.and, besides, I dont want to step on the pin in my bare feet J.

For Therese, being a spiritual child meant total trust and dependence upon God. She used to say: To be little means recognizing ones nothingness, expecting everything from our good God, as a little child expects everything from its Father. Even among the poor, a little child is given everything it needs so long as it is little; but as soon as it grows up, its father will no longer feed it and says: Work for yourself.

Thereses spirituality knits together the themes of St. Paul and the Gospel; she writes:

We must do everything that is within us: give without counting the cost, practice the virtues at every opportunity, conquer ourselves all the time and prove our love by every sort of tenderness and loving attention. In a word, we must carry out all the good works that lie in our powerout of love for God. But it is essential to put our whole trust in Him who alone can sanctify our work, who can indeed sanctify us without works, since He may even bring forth children of Abraham from the very stones. It is necessary for us, when we have done all we can, to confess that we are unprofitable servants, while hoping that God, in His grace, will give us what we need. That is the way of childhood.

How many people come to this Church to follow the route of Angels & Demons of Dan Brown, to see where fictitious Cardinals were killed. The Life and teachings of the Little Flower are the real road map and sure compass on our journey toward God. May we travel that road joyfully and faithfully until we reach the final Victory with our Risen Lord and with Our Lady of Victory in whose house we celebrate this holy Mass.

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Santa Maria della Vittoria The Church of St. Mary of the Victory

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The Friars placed my Coat of Arms above the Church’s door.

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Gian Lorenzo Bernini’s “The Ecstasy of St. Teresa.” He created the masterpiece in 1646 for then Cardinal F. Cornaro of Venice.

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Close-up view of Bernini’s beautiful work.

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Another view.

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From below.

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The Vatican and the police provided an escort to the Church – it was an interesting drive through the busy streets of Rome….if you look closely, you can see the officer waving the “stop-wand” out the window lol.

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Entering the Church to begin the ceremony.

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To begin the formal ceremony, the Pastor, Fr. Stefano presented a Crucifix for me to kiss as a sign of reverence.

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Praying before the Blessed Sacrament.

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Vesting before the Mass Beautiful vestment was from the 16th century.

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When Cardinal Sodano arrived, the paparazzi camera flashes filled the sacristy.

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Processing into Santa Maria della Vittoria.

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Entering the Church.

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Fr. Stefano reads the official Titular proclamation.

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Beginning the Mass.

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You can see just how beautiful the High Altar is in this picture. The original Altar was actually destroyed by fire in 1833 and was rebuilt in 1880.

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View of the High Altar from the pews.

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Shrine dedicated to The Little Flower next to the High Altar.

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After Mass, signing the official Titular documents.

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The Friars hosted a very nice reception following the Mass for everyone who came to the celebration.

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Earlier in this post, I mentioned that Mother Teresa established a shelter for the homeless right here at the Vatican in Rome. This is the door to the shelter.

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Sisters of the community of Mother Teresa of Calcutta here in Rome.

Today was a very joyous day and a wonderful way to conclude my time in the Eternal City. Im very happy that I was able to share the joy of this day with you, here on my blog.

Thank you for visiting.

Until tomorrow, my final post from our time in Rome.

God Bless,

Cardinal Sen

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38 Responses to St. Therese of “The Little Flower” – Following Her Road Map & Compass To God


Comments

  1. Comment by michael g. b. | 2006/10/01 at 23:00:34

    although my name is “michael”, Saint Therese of Lisieux is my chosen patron saint . . . perhaps chosen by her as equally by me . . . i first heard of Saint Therese back in the parochial school i attended in the 1950’s where the life of Saint Therese weas read to us . . . i was instantly devoted to her . . . later i read her “Story Of A Soul” and it became the main spiritual companion to the Scriptures — her “life” became like the light which enabled me to read the scriptures with an understanding and comprehesion of “the meaning beneath the surface” of the words . . .

    i mention Saint Therese to anyone and everyone whenever and wherever i have the opportunity, much like Johnny Appleseed dropped apple seeds all along his ways, with the hopes that some might themselves read Saint Therese’s own words and become devoted to “the Gospel” according to her Little Way having Saint Therese as their pilgrimage companion . . .

  2. ann
    Comment by ann | 2006/10/01 at 23:06:10

    Dear Cardinal Sean, what a wonderful day of joy for you in Roma – and our Lady of Victory is with you as you lead the Church in Boston – never forget that when times get rough. How chosen you are for the people of God in Boston and the entire Church, the Universal Church. May you experience God’s favor and blessing and a shower of roses from heaven as a consolation of joy and beauty- if not today all through the octave!

    Thank you for the fantastic teachings. They are wonderful and real stories the faithful need to hear and to know that the mystical body of Christ is ALIVE now for us. Like our committee in Heaven! Our best, closest friends!

    (ps – wish you had done the FOUR teresa’s – – theresa benedicata, edith stein!) you’ll have to get her next time! :)

    God bless you! Ann

  3. Comment by Maria Teresa Frias | 2006/10/02 at 00:43:44

    Dear Padre Sean we love you always and we know that you are very much loved by all kinds of people. We give thanks to our blessed Mother and to the Holy Trinity for your dear parents and your dear Capuchin brothers for giving us the Padre Sean that you are for the good of the entire Church. Thank you for your beautiful reflections on the Teresas. They are sharing their joy with all the saints in heaven and with all of us here on earth when we pray everywhere for you and for each other.

  4. Comment by Lisa | 2006/10/02 at 01:01:34

    Dear Cardinal Sean. Your blog is wonderful — I’ve never been to Rome but now I feel almost as I have been through this online tour you have kindly given us. This is the most edifying and encouraging blog that I’ve seen to date. I hope you continue it once your time in Rome is over.

  5. Comment by Manuel Dorantes | 2006/10/02 at 01:26:52

    Dear Cardinal O’malley
    The Church of Chicago rejoices with you in this most joyous ocassion, we pray here (at Mundelein seminary) for you and for the many lives that you will bring closer to Christ through your ministry to the people of the Archdiocese of Boston. May the Lord give you the strength to continue with the great task with wich you have been entrusted.

    Felicidades Seor Arzobispo!

  6. Comment by | 2006/10/02 at 01:31:22

    Sen, greetings from Peru. You’re posting great and wonderful stories. Thanks a lot. I hope in your future posts talk about diferent spiritualities. See ya!

  7. Eve
    Comment by Eve | 2006/10/02 at 08:37:52

    Dear Cardinal Sen,
    Hello from Malaysia. I shall be a regular reader of your blog. It is good to get in touch with people on a more personal level through your blog. The readers may not be Roman Catholics. But they are people who wish to know what is going on from another person’s personal views instead of depending on just the mass media which are actually personal interpretations of other people on different situations. It is good to know you.

  8. Comment by Deacon John Szwarc | 2006/10/02 at 08:54:05

    I really appreciated your blog and the pictures in Rome. I will keep you in my prayers for your continued success in ministry.
    Deacon John Szwarc
    Archdiocese of Detroit

  9. Comment by fabiola | 2006/10/02 at 09:15:54

    I am touch,very touch. What an inspiration, please continue.
    please.

    Thank you.

  10. Comment by glenna | 2006/10/02 at 09:28:12

    Your comment in your homily about Therese being ‘precocious’ as a child reminded me of a letter her mother, Zelie, wrote before she died (when Therese was 4). She mentioned some of Therese’s antics & then said she didn’t know what was to become of this child. Turns out, “this child”, who is my patron, has never not answered any prayer I ever prayed to her. She has really been faithful to her promise to shower roses from heaven…and Zelie is every bit as attentive to joining me in prayer as her daughter! Its true we are surrounded by a great cloud of witnesses….which we vey much need during this time of persecution of the Church on earth.

  11. Comment by Fr. Simon Hall | 2006/10/02 at 09:53:07

    Your Emminence,
    Just a note to say I have followed your pilgrimage to Roma. I would like to thank you for so generously and imaginitively sharing your experiences with us. Although I am a priest in England and therefore have no connections with your see; I have felt close to you and your people in these days. How wonderful it is to be Catholic!! Oremus pro inveceau!

  12. Comment by John Lincoln | 2006/10/02 at 09:55:33

    Recent article on Saint Therese on the Catholic Exchange website.

    http://www.catholicexchange.com/vm/index.asp?vm_id=2&art_id=34579

  13. Comment by Christine Eaton | 2006/10/02 at 09:56:29

    Dear Cardinal O’Malley!
    I am grateful to Michael Brown of http://www.spiritdaily.com, for putting your blog link at his website! What I saw this morning brought tears of joy to my eyes! I am so grateful to you for sharing the pictures and the ceremonies of you taking possession of your Titular church, St. Mary of the Victory!! Thank you for your blog, which I, who live in Canton, Ohio, will continue to read. I’ve read it daily, since it began recently. I’m sure people from all over the world will do the same, Your Eminence! (and I am not what one would even remotely consider a “blogger!”).

    With love and support, fellow Catholic,
    Christine Eaton

  14. Comment by Theresa C. Gleason | 2006/10/02 at 10:31:12

    Dear Cardinal Sean, Most wonderful blog…how approachable…lovely smile too…Fr. Christopher Rengers has promoted your achievements several times to me through the years…….Most importantly…I am suggesting a read of Our Lady OF Victory, revelations of Sr. Natalia of Hungary…….Tan BOoks…..She promotes Our Lady’s Victory that offers much joy and more, after this trial period which seems to last forever, but in God’s time, is but a blip on the radar screen…pray we may remain in her protective care….God Bless. Theresa

  15. Comment by Eva Arnott | 2006/10/02 at 11:43:39

    I enjoyed reading the homily about the inspiring life of St Therese. It reminded me of a story told by a retired Boston archdiocesan priest. Seventy years ago he attended St Theresa parochial school which was going to be visited by Cardinal O’Connell who usually asked the class what another name was for the saint after whom a school was named. The nuns prepared the children to chorus the answer “The Little Flower”. On that day, however, he swept in, dressed all in red, and asked instead – “Do you know who I am?”………………..!

  16. Comment by Gail Marie..JoyfulPilgrim | 2006/10/02 at 13:30:25

    Dear Cardinal Sean, Again your blog is just out standing and I’m looking forward to your continued blog’s on Friday. Please add pictures of Boston and area for us who are not in your care. And keep us all in your prayers. as we will keep you and OUR HOLY CATHOLIC..Thank you again for sharing your pilgrimage with us..which is over now..as all pilgrimages do. But now we are all on a Journey, which never ends. PRAYERS and BLESSINGS for you, Gail

  17. Jan
    Comment by Jan | 2006/10/02 at 13:31:19

    Dear Cardinal O’Malley,
    Thank you for your blog on your trip. God Bless all of you and keep you safe. Please pray for me right now. I need all the prayers that I can get. I am going through some rough times but I am trying to have faith in God. I believe he is the most forgiving God. I need his forgiveness and help right now.
    God Bless you always,
    Jan

  18. Comment by Jane | 2006/10/02 at 16:11:14

    Dear Cardinal O’Malley,

    God brought me to your blog just a few days ago. I am from the Diocese of Springfield and have greatly enjoyed what I have seen and read on your blog. Thank you so very much for reaching out to us. Inspired by the feast of St Therese I ask you to pray for the Littlest of Little prayer cenacle whose members named St Therese their patron. They were truely the littlest member (infants, toddler, early chilhood age) when it was established. Now they are entering into young adult life and face many challenges and obstacles, which some of them have fallen to. Please pray for them…I will pray for you.

  19. Comment by Myriam Dox-Frias | 2006/10/02 at 16:25:43

    Dear Padre Sean,
    Congratulations on an outstanding blog! Thanks to you we have once again visited Rome. It has been a great blessing to read every day about your daily activities and to catch a glimpse of what the real Vatican is. Your homily on the Feast of the Little Flower has touched our hearts, and the beauty of the church of Santa Maria della Vittoria (the photos) are just amazing! Stay well and know that you remain always in our prayers.
    Myriam Dox-Frias
    Belgium

  20. Dan
    Comment by Dan | 2006/10/02 at 17:05:56

    Cardinal Sean, So many of the faithful in the Fall River Diocese have been following you on your journey to Rome. Thank you for this extremely informative blog. I frequently visit the Perpetual Eucharistic Chapel that you dedicated at Holy Trinity Parish in West Harwich. The stained glass windows that you generously gave to the parish which vividly depict some of the more significant aspects of the Lord’s life in the Holy Land are spectacular and inspirational to so many. As we approach the feast day of St. Francis may you and your Franciscan brothers take great support from the Lord and His love for St. Francis.

    From the faithful in the Diocese of Fall River

  21. Comment by William Horan | 2006/10/02 at 17:13:48

    I wonder if these Saint Theresas can help us do a better job of serving the poor in our Catholic Schools and Colleges. It seems like most of our resources go to the middle class and rich.
    St. Theresas, teach us how to provide “a preferential option for the poor.”

  22. Comment by Frances | 2006/10/02 at 19:36:24

    How nice to read your blog…thank you for your writings…informative and reverent…love the little details like the pastoral garment several hundreds of years old…wonderful….hope you had a restful time and come home to us here! Bring home A BUNCH of those rosaries….and let’s pray! Pray on, pray on.

  23. Comment by Deacon Robert DeLuca | 2006/10/02 at 20:51:52

    I discovered a treasure upon reading the Catholic News Service today…Cardinal Sean’s blog. Thank you for taking the time to share your pilgrimage of faith with us.

    As a native of the Archdiocese of Boston, I was delighted when the Great John Paul II named to Archbishop and even more delighted when you were elevated to Cardinal. The people of God deserve a humble friar like you to bring about the healing and reconciliation that is so necessary.

    Be assured of a remembrance in my daily prayers and sacrifices. May God continue to bless you abundantly and may Father Francis continue to inspire you as you ‘rebuild the Church’.

    Deacon Robert DeLuca
    Diocese of Saint Augustine, FL

  24. Comment by MSGR. STANLEY E. MILEWSKI | 2006/10/02 at 21:28:47

    HOW WONDERFUL OF YOU TO SHARE YOUR PERSONAL JOURNEY WITH US. YOU BROUGHT TO MIND THE VISIT I WAS PRIVILEGED TO MAKE WITH YOU TO THE GRAVE OF VENERABLE SOLANUS CASEY DURING YOUR VISIT TO ORCHARD LAKE. YOU WILL ALWAYS BE IN OUR PRAYERS AS YOU LEAD THE PEOPLE OF GOD IN BOSTON. HAVE A WONDERFUL FEAST DAY OF ST. FRANCIS D’ASSISI. BEST WISHES. OREMUS PRO INVICEM.

  25. Tim
    Comment by Tim | 2006/10/03 at 00:39:53

    What a great treatise of St. Therese!
    Thank you, your Excellency.

  26. Comment by Martin W Clark | 2006/10/03 at 05:27:29

    Dear Cardinal Sean,
    How wonderful to have your blog, and your taking the reader along on your visits to the Eternal City. What is even greater than your insight and rememberances of your travels, is the openness and easy communication you have given us with Boston’s Cardinal Archbishop. This open communication link draws the readers closer to their shepherd and brings you and your sheep closer in greater union with the Shepherd of us all, Jesus Christ. God bless you and keep writing for these words show the love of your ministry, and greater insight of your position through the eyes of a prayerful and humble leader.
    Pray for me as I pray for you.
    Marty Clark

  27. Comment by ro shapley | 2006/10/03 at 14:27:11

    Eminence,

    Im am a Parishioner of The Shrine of St. Therese in Fresno, Ca. Perhaps you know it is the first North American shrine to The Little Flower. Your blog on the events of the Feast Day in Rome is very important to me and my fellow parishioners and I thank you for your commentary and especially the fact you are the Cardinal of the Titular Church dedicated to St. Therese.

  28. Comment by Obi of St. Thomas More | 2006/10/03 at 18:19:32

    Dear Cardinal Sean:

    This is a beautiful Blog. Are you going to teach sharing the faith via Blog to your brother cardinals?

    Obi

  29. Comment by joan | 2006/10/03 at 21:14:03

    Dear Bishop Sean,
    As a child and a member of St. Lawrence parish, I was enthralled with the beautiful statue of St. Theresa, set before a golden wall with cascades of red roses. Many happy prayers were said there. It is still a favorite place to contemplate one of God’s miracles. Thank you for sharing your joy. Joan

  30. Comment by Clarence Gilyard | 2006/10/04 at 12:51:57

    +JMJ+

    Your Excellency,

    I met you 2 summers ago at the Stonehill College. I am on the board of directors for the International Headquarters for Holy Cross Family Ministries. I am a husband, father of 3, actor, director, producer, and now associate professor of theatre and film. Thus there are a lot of ways for me to cry the Gospel. I have been introduced to your blog and I thank you for your transparency. If you need anything from the Gilyard family give me a call.

    Gloria Te Cristo Gesu,
    Clarence Gilyard

    cagilyard@aol.com

  31. Comment by Hon. William H. Carey | 2006/10/04 at 16:57:30

    Your blog from Italy was a beautiful and inspireing representation of your trip. It even spreads out to your old home here in Fall River Diocese. I only hope that God gives you the strength to continue your mission which you do so well and accomplish so much. All our prayers contiue to be with you.

  32. Comment by Barbara | 2006/10/05 at 01:38:27

    such an emotional experience. thank you for letting me be part of this. god bless you

  33. Comment by MANUEL AVELLAN | 2006/10/05 at 12:25:34

    Su Eminencia:

    Le ruego pedir por el hijo de mi mejor amogo, quien tiene todo su cuerpo con melanoma, solo un milagro de Dios, lo podra salvar.

    Agimus tibi Gratias

    Manuel

  34. Kim
    Comment by Kim | 2006/10/05 at 15:00:57

    Dear Cardinal Sean,

    I really love your blog. Thanks for sharing your experiences in Rome with everyone. I look forward to checking back for updates ;o)

  35. Comment by Roger DeHay | 2006/10/06 at 15:54:34

    Dear Cardinal Sean,
    You fill the heart with compassion and reverence with your words and detailed journey’s experience. The Lord has trully blessed our Archdiocese here in Boston with a true friend of Christ and Shephard of the faithful. May God bless you and our Universal Church as our prayers will always be with you and our Holy Father.

    PS: Thank you so much for this blog. I had no idea what a bolg was until I heard of this on the news :)

  36. Comment by John J.Riley,M.A.,M.Div. | 2006/10/10 at 23:21:02

    Cardinal Sean,
    It was a joy to read about your taking
    possession of your titular church in Rome. Your talk
    about the Little Flower was great. I was born on the
    feast of the Little Flower (Oct.3,1932) and enjoyed your
    homily. The 3 Teresas were certainly great saints.
    Lucky (John J.Riley,M.A.,M.Div.)

  37. Comment by Mary Jo Bieberich | 2006/10/12 at 20:36:09

    Your Excellency:

    In this week’s Catholic Review, the weekly newspaper for the Archdiocese of Baltimore, I read the Catholic News Service article about your blog and immediately went on-line. Your homily about the three Saint Theresas reminded me of my mother’s (also a Theresa) life-long devotion to the Little Flower. I fondly remember how she would insist that her name be spelled correctly…with an “h” like the Little Flower. My mother died in December 2001. She was 89. Your message about St. Theresa brought back wonderful and soothing memories of my mother Theresa, her deep faith in God, and her devotion to her patron saint. Thank you for such an unexpected and lovely gift.

    Respectfully,

    Mary Jo

  38. Comment by Robert Ssempa | 2006/12/06 at 10:15:52

    Dear Cardinal Sean
    I landed on this wonderful website by chance, i was just relaxing in office and decided to put your name in the search engine. This is wonderful.
    I am the chairman of the Laity in the Archdiocese of Kampala – UGANDA and Cardinal Wamala was my Archbishop until few months ago when he retired and now succeded by His Grace Archbishop Cyprian Lwanga.
    I normally follow what happens in our sister dioceses and pass over the information to the faithful when i get a chance. At times i print out the information ( like this one)and pass over to various priests and to our news letter editor. Your Eminance this is wonderful, may the lord guide you in your work.
    Robert Ssempa
    Chairman of the Laity Kampala Archdicese


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