The feast of Saint Therese of Lisieux, Saint Therese of the Child Jesus and the Holy Face, is commemorated today, Rosary Sunday and the Nineteenth Sunday after Pentecost.
Marie-Frances Therese Martin was born to the holiest of parents, Louis and Zelie Martin, who endeavored to shield their children as much as possible from the influences of the world. The sacrifices made by Louis and Zelie Martin produced five vocations to the consecrated religious life. Zelie Martin's prayers from eternity after her death assisted her husband as he raised one canonized saint and four other daughters who served Holy Mother Church as brides of Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. The simplicity and love of the Little Flower teaches each of us to pursue holiness as befits redeemed creatures, seeking the things of Heaven in this life so that we may spend our Heaven doing good here on earth.
Saint Therese of the Child Jesus and the Holy Face was raised in a family that stressed the importance of withdrawing from the world. Louis and Zelie Martin were very protective of their daughters, making sure to instill within them a firm commitment to the Virtue of Modesty. Indeed, Sister Genevieve of the Holy Face, Marie-Frances Celine Martin, was shocked at the immodesty that had overtaken France with the Allied bombing of Normandy forced the cloistered Carmelites of the Carmel out of their cloister and into the world in June of 1944. She noted this in a letter to Mother Agnes Mary that was dated July 7, 1944:
"After fifty years of eremetical living, to find myself all of a sudden uprooted and thrown into the midst of the world, with veil raised, is a true martyrdom for a recluse like me. It seems to me as if we're in a station where everybody is crowding around and intermingling. We sleep fully clothed on benches; we take our meals in haste, standing up in the dark; we look with astonishment and grief at the feminine styles stripped of all dignity." (As quoted in Celine: Sister Genevieve of the Holy Face, Sister and Witness of St. Therese of the Child Jesus, by Father Stephane-Joseph Piat, O.F.M., p. 130.)
What would Saint Therese and Sister Genevieve say today about the feminine attire that is considered "modest" and "acceptable" in Catholic chapels all across the vast expanse of the ecclesiastical divide where some version of the Immemorial Mass of Tradition is offered or simulated? They were not been approving, and that is because their holy parents taught them Catholic right from wordily wrong. Why is this so difficult for many traditionally-minded Catholic parents to understand, accept and abide by today?
There might be an original article on this site on Sunday, a day after the beginning of Jorge's soiree inside the walls of the Occupied Vatican on the West Bank of the Tiber River.
Our Lady of the Rosary, pray for us.
Saint Therese of Lisieux, pray for us!