Carmelite Saints


Saint Kuriakos Elias Chavara, co-founder and first prior general of the congregation of the Carmelites of Mary Immaculate, was born at Kainakary in Kerala, India, February 10, 1805. He entered the seminary in 1818, and was ordained priest in 1829. He made his religious profession in 1855, in the congregation he founded. In 1861 he was named vicar general for the Syro- Malabar church; in this capacity he defended ecclesial unity threatened by schism when Mar Tomas Rochos was sent from Mesopotamia to consecrate Nestorian bishops. Throughout his life he worked for the renovation of the church in Malabar. He was also co-founder in 1866 of the congregation of the Sisters of the Mother of Carmel. Above all, he was a man of prayer, zealous for the Eucharistic Lord and devoted to the Immaculate Virgin Mary. He died at Koonammavu in 1871. His body was transferred to Mannanam in 1889.

Prayer

Lord God,
You raised up Blessed Kuriakos Elias your priest
to strengthen the unity of the Church.
Grant that through his intercession
we may be enlightened by the Holy Spirit
to read the signs of the times with wisdom
and spread the news of the Gospel
by both word and example.
We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever.

Born about 1305 in southern Perigord, in France, Peter Thomas entered the Carmelites when he was twenty-one. He was chosen by the Order as its procurator general to the Papal Court at Avignon in 1345. After being made bishop of Patti and Lipari in 1354, he was entrusted with many papal missions to promote peace and unity with the Eastern Churches. He was translated to the see of Corone in the Peloponnesus in 1359 and made Papal Legate for the East. In 1363 he was appointed Archbishop of Crete and in 1364 Latin Patriarch of Constantinople. He won a reputation as an apostle of church unity before he died at Famagosta on Cyprus in 1366.

Prayer

Lord,
you inspired in your bishop, Saint Peter Thomas,
an intense desire to promote peace and Christian unity.
Following his example,
may we live steadfast in the faith
and work perseveringly for peace.
We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever.

Andrew was born at the beginning of the fourteenth century in Florence and entered the Carmelite Order there. He was elected provincial of Tuscany at the general chapter of Metz in 1348. He was made bishop of Fiesole on October 13, 1349, and gave the Church a wonderful example of love, apostolic zeal, prudence and love of the poor. He died on January 6, 1374.

Prayer

God our Father,
you reveal that those who work for peace
will be called your children.
Through the prayers of Saint Andrew Corsini,
who excelled as a peacemaker,
help us to work without ceasing
for that justice which brings true and lasting peace.
We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever.

Henry was born at Vinebre, Catalonia, Spain, on the 16th October 1840 and was ordained priest on 21st September 1867. He was an apostle to young people in teaching them about their faith and inspired various movements for the teaching of the Gospel. As a spiritual director he was fascinated by St. Teresa of Jesus, the great teacher in the ways of prayer and Daughter of the Church. (She is better known in the English-speaking world as St. Teresa of Avila.) In the light of her teaching, he founded the Company of St. Teresa (1876) dedicated to educating women in the school of the Gospel and following the example of St. Teresa. He gave himself to preaching and the apostolate through the printing press. He underwent many severe trials and sufferings. He died at Gilet, Valencia, Spain, on the 27th of January, 1896. He was canonized on 16th July, 1993, in Madrid, by Pope John Paul II.

Prayer

Lord God,
in your priest Saint Henry de Oss?
you wonderfully combined
the ideals of the apostolic community:
a life of continual prayer,
and of untiring apostolic activity.
By his intercession may we persevere in the love of Christ
and serve your Church by word and deed.
We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever.

Nuno was born in 1360 and fought for many years as a soldier for the independence of Portugal. After his wife?s death he entered the Order of Our Lady of Mount Carmel as a brother in the house he had founded in Lisbon, and took the name of Nuno of Saint Mary (1423). He died there in 1431, after distinguishing himself by his prayer, penance, and filial devotion to the Mother of God.

Prayer

Lord God,
you called Blessed Nuno Alvares Pereira
to put aside his sword and follow Christ
under the patronage of Our Lady of Mount Carmel.
Through his prayers may we too deny ourselves,
and devote ourselves to you with all our hearts.
Grant this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever.

Baptist Spagnoli was born at Mantua, Italy, on April 17, 1447, and entered the Carmelite Congregation of Mantua as a youth at Ferrara. He was professed in 1464, and thereafter filled a number of offices at various locations. Having been Vicar General of his Congregation six times, he was elected Prior General of the whole Order in 1513. He died at Mantua on March 20, 1516. His virtue was outstanding, in particular his love for the Church, and he spared no effort in the cause of reform. He is considered one of the best poets of his age.

Prayer

Lord God,
you made Our Lady's faithful servant,
Blessed Baptist Spagnoli,
a preacher of your Gospel by word and example.
Through his prayers
may we ponder your word in Mary's company
and praise you with her by the way we live.
We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever.

Barbe Avrillot was born in Paris in 1566. At the age of sixteen she married Pierre Acarie, by whom she had seven children. Through her household duties and many hardships, she attained the heights of the mystical life. Under the influence of Saint Teresa?s writings, and after mystical contact with the saint herself, she spared no effort in introducing the Discalced Carmelite Nuns into France. After her husband?s death, she asked to be admitted among them as a lay sister, taking the name of Mary of the Incarnation; she was professed at the Carmel of Amiens in 1615. She was esteemed by some of the greatest men of her time, including Saint Francis de Sales; and she was distinguished by her spirit of prayer and her zeal for the extension of the Catholic Faith. She died at Pontoise on April 18, 1618.

Prayer

Heavenly Father,
you gave Blessed Mary of the Incarnation
heroic strength in the face of the adversities
she met along life's road,
and zeal for the extension of the Carmelite family.
May we your children courageously endure every trial
and persevere to the end in your love.
We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever.

She was born at Campi Bisenzio, Florence, where in 1874 she founded the Congregation of Carmelite Sisters of Saint Teresa, whom she also sent to Lebanon and the Holy Land. She lived joyfully, body and soul, the mystery of the Cross in full conformity to the will of God, and she was outstanding for her love for the Eucharist, and her maternal care for children and for the poor. She died at Campi Bisenzio on 23rd April, 1910.

Prayer

O God,
by the inexhaustible grace of the Eucharist,
you enabled the virgin Blessed Teresa Maria
to walk the way of the Cross,
and filled her with maternal concern
for the weak and the poor.
Through her intercession
may we too be strengthened by the bread of angels
to share joyfully in the suffering of Christ
and to participate in works of love
for the establishment of your kingdom.
We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever.

Angelus was one of the first Carmelites to come to Sicily from Mount Carmel. According to trustworthy sources, he was killed by unbelievers in Licata during the first half of the thirteenth century. Acclaimed as a martyr, his body was placed in a church built on the site of his death. Only in 1632 were his relics transferred to the Carmelite Church. Veneration of Saint Angelus spread throughout the Carmelite Order as well as among the populace. He has been named patron of many places in Sicily. Even to the present time devoted persons invoke him in their needs and faithfully honor him. Although no longer included within the proper calendar for Discalced Carmelites, the feast of Saint Angelus may be observed in the same way as an optional memorial, with texts taken from the common

Prayer

God our Father,
you have honored the Church
with the victorious witness of Saint Angelus,
who died for his faith.
As he imitated the sufferings and death of the Lord,
may we follow in his footsteps and come to eternal joy.
We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever.

Saint George was born in Valletta, the capital of the Mediterranean island of Malta, and lived for a time in Valletta near the Sanctuary of Our Lady of Mount Carmel. As a child, and according to the customs of the times, George joined the Carmelite Family by being enrolled in the Scapular. As a young man he felt called to the priesthood. He was ordained priest on 22 December 1906. During the early months of 1907, the young Fr George began his mission by gathering around him and forming a small group of young men in their twenties. He instilled in them moral principles, the fear of God and an awareness of the infinite love that God bears humanity.

Prayer

God our Father,
in Saint George Preca
you gave a light to your faithful people.
You made him a pastor of the Church
to feed your sheep with his word
and to teach them by his example.
Help us by his prayers to keep the faith he taught
and follow the way of life he showed us.
Grant this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever.

Simon, an Englishman, died at Bordeaux in the mid-thirteenth century. He has been venerated in the Carmelite Order for his personal holiness and his devotion to Our Lady. A liturgical celebration in his honor was observed locally in the fifteenth century, and later extended to the whole Order.

Prayer

God of love,
you called Saint Simon Stock to serve you
in the family of Our Lady of Mount Carmel.
Through his prayers help us, like him,
to live in your presence
and to work for the salvation of all.
Grant this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever.

Joachina was born in Barcelona in 1783. She married Theodore de Mas in 1799 and bore him nine children before being widowed in 1816. Then in 1826 she was prompted by God?s Spirit to found the Congregation of Carmelite Sisters of Charity, which spread throughout Catalonia, establishing houses for the care of the sick and the education of children, especially the poor. She was greatly drawn to contemplating the mystery of the Holy Trinity. Her spiritual life was marked by prayer, mortification, detachment; humility and love. She died at Vich in 1854.

Prayer

Lord God,
you gave Saint Joachina de Vedruna
to your Church for the Christian education of youth
and the care of the sick.
May we follow her example,
and lovingly devote our lives
to serving you in our brothers and sisters.
Grant this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever.

In 1566 Saint Mary Magdalen de? Pazzi was born in Florence where she received a good religious upbringing, and eventually became a Carmelite nun. In Carmel she led a hidden life of prayer and self-denial, praying fervently for the reform of the Church and helping her sisters in their quest for perfection. After receiving many graces from God, she died in 1607.

Prayer

Father,
you love those who give themselves completely to your service,
and you filled Saint Mary Magdalen de' Pazzi
with heavenly gifts and the fire of your love.
As we honor her today,
may we follow her example of purity and charity.
Grant this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever.

Blessed Elia of St. Clement was born in Bari, 17th January 1901, to deeply Christian parents. At her baptism she was given the name Theodora, gift of God. In the brief course of her life on earth she lived up to her name. On 8th April 1920 (then Feast of St. Albert, author of the Carmelite Rule), she entered the Carmel of St. Joseph in Bari. She received the habit on 24th November of the same year, the feast of St John of the Cross. On 8th December 1924 she wrote in her own blood her act of total and definitive offering to the Lord with the vow to embrace the "most perfect". She died on Christmas day 1927. On 19th December 2005 Pope Benedict XVI signed the Decree of Beatification. She was proclaimed Blessed in Bari Cathedral on 18th March 2006.

Prayer

O Lord,
who were pleased to accept the self-offering
of Blessed Elia of Saint Clement, virgin;
grant through her intercession,
that, sustained by the Eucharist
we may be able faithfully to do your will.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you,
and the Holy Spirit, one God, forever and ever.

Ana Garcia was born at Almendral, Castille, in 1549. In 1572 she made her profession as a Carmelite in the hands of St Teresa, at Saint Joseph?s, Avila. The saint later chose her as her companion and nurse, and she subsequently brought the Teresian spirit to France and Belgium, where she proved herself, like Teresa, a daughter of the Church in her great zeal for the salvation of souls. She died at Antwerp in 1626.

Prayer

Father,
rewarder of the humble,
you blessed your servant Anne of Saint Bartholomew
with outstanding charity and patience.
May her prayers help us,
and her example inspire us,
to carry our cross
and be faithful in loving you,
and others for your sake.
We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever.

He was born in 1891 at Baranowka, near Lubartow, Poland. He entered the Order of Discalced Carmelites in 1908, taking the religious name Alphonsus Mary of the Holy Spirit. He was ordained a priest and appointed as a professor, while dedicating himself to the education of youth. Afterwards he served in his Order as prior and bursar. In 1944, after having been arrested by the troops that had invaded his country, he was shot on 28th August at Nawojowa Gora, near Krzeszowice. He was beatified by John Paul II on 13th June 1999, together with many other Polish martyrs.

Prayer

May the prayers of your martyrs
Blessed Alphonsus Mary and Companions,
prevail with you, Lord, on our behalf:
Let them strengthen us in our witness to your truth.
We make our prayer through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever.

Although no longer included within the proper calendar for Discalced Carmelites, the feast of Saint Elisha may be observed in the same way as an optional memorial, with texts taken from the common

Prayer

God our Father,
you alone are holy;
without you nothing is good.
Trusting in the prayers of Saint Elisha
we ask you to help us
to become the holy people you call us to be.
Never let us be found undeserving
of the glory you have prepared for us.
We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever.

Blessed Maria Candida of the Eucharist was born on 16 January 1884 in Catanzano. Her parents, Pietro Barba and Giovanna Florona, returned to Palermo, Sicily, where she received First Holy Communion 3rd April 1894. In 1919 she entered the Discalced Carmelite Monastery, Ragusa, making solemn profession 23rd April 1924. She was Prioress and Mistress of Novices many times, radiating a sense of Carmelite holiness both within and outside of the community, influencing others with her love for the Eucharist, as well as by her numerous writings. She died on 12th June 1949, the solemnity of the Holy Trinity, and was beatified 21st March 2004.

Prayer

All powerful and ever living God,
Who, by the breath of the Spirit,
inspired Blessed Maria Candida, virgin,
to contemplate the riches of the Eucharist,
by her intercession, grant we beseech you,
that gratefully offering
the sacrifice of the Body and Blood of Christ,
in union with the Blessed Virgin Mary,
we may always glorify You in this Sacrament,
Who lives and reigns with You
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
God, forever and ever.

Juanita Fern?ndez Solar was born at Santiago, Chile, on July 13, 1900. From her adolescence she was devoted to Christ. She entered the monastery of the Discalced Carmelite Nuns at Los Andes on May 7, 1919, where she was given the name of Teresa of Jesus. She died on April 12 of the following year after having made her religious profession. She was beatified by John Paul II on April 3, 1987, at Santiago, Chile, and proposed as a model for young people. She is the first Chilean and the first member of the Teresian Carmel in Latin America to be canonized.

Prayer

God of mercy, joy of the saints,
you set the youthful heart of Saint Teresa
ablaze with the fire of virginal love
for Christ and for his Church;
and even in suffering you made her
a cheerful witness to charity.
Through her intercession,
fill us with the delights of your Spirit,
so that we may proclaim by word and deed
the joyful message of your love to the world.
Grant this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever. Amen.

The sacred scriptures speak of the beauty of Mount Carmel where the prophet Elijah defended the faith of Israel in the living God. There, at the beginning of the thirteenth century, under the title of Saint Mary of Mount Carmel, the Order of Carmelites had its formal beginning. From the fourteenth century this title, recalling the countless blessings of its patroness, began to be celebrated solemnly, first in England and then gradually throughout the whole Order. It attained its supreme place from the beginning of the seventeenth century, when the General Chapter declared it to be the principal feast of the Order, and Paul V recognized it as the feast of the Scapular Confraternity.

Prayer

Father,
may the prayers of the Blessed Virgin Mary,
Mother and Queen of Carmel,
protect us, and bring us
to your holy Mountain, Christ our Lord,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever. Amen.

As the French Revolution entered its worst days, sixteen Discalced Carmelites from the Monastery of the Incarnation in Compi?gne offered their lives as a sacrifice to God, making reparation to him and imploring peace for the Church. On June 24, 1794, they were arrested and thrown into prison. Their happiness and resignation were so evident that those around them were also encouraged to draw strength from God?s love. They were condemned to death for their fidelity to the Church and their religious life and for their devotion to the Sacred Hearts of Jesus and Mary. Singing hymns, and having renewed their vows before the superior, Teresa of St Augustine, they were put to death in Paris on July 17, 1794.

Prayer

Lord God,
you called Blessed Teresa of Saint Augustine and her companions
to go on in the strength of the Holy Spirit
from the heights of Carmel to receive a martyr?s crown.
May our love too be so steadfast
that it will bring us
to the everlasting vision of your glory.

The prophet Elijah appears in Scripture as a man of God who lived always in his presence and fought zealously for the worship of the one true God. He defended God?s law in a solemn contest on Mount Carmel, and afterwards was given on Mount Horeb an intimate experience of the living God. The inspiration that was found in him from the very beginnings of the Order so pervades its whole history that the prophet may deservedly be called the founder of the Carmelite ideal.

Prayer

Almighty, ever-living God,
your prophet Elijah, our Father,
lived always in your presence
and was zealous for the honor due to your name.
May we, your servants,
always seek your face
and bear witness to your love.
We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever.

The Blessed Virgin Mary was eternally predestined, in the context of the incarnation of the divine Word, to be Mother of God. As decreed by divine Providence, she served on earth as the loving Mother of the divine Redeemer, his associate, uniquely generous, and the Lord?s humble servant. She conceived, bore, and nourished Christ; presented him to the Father in the Temple; and was united with him in his suffering as he died on the cross. In a completely unparalleled way she cooperated, by her obedience, faith, hope and burning charity, with our Savior?s work of restoring supernatural life to souls. For this reason she is Mother to us all in the order of grace

Prayer

God of eternal wisdom,
in your providence you willed that the Blessed Virgin Mary
should bring forth the Author of Grace,
and take part with him in the mystery of redemption.
May she obtain for us grace in abundance
and bring us to the haven of everlasting salvation. We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever.

Mercedes Prat was born on March 6, 1880, in Barcelona, baptized on the following day, and made her First Holy Communion on June 30, 1890. From her childhood she gave herself completely to God, whom she received every day in Communion. She displayed a great love for her neighbor and tried to foster this kind of love in others. During her years in school, she was known for her goodness and her dedication to school work, excelling especially in painting and needlework, which were areas in which she had a natural talent. Entering the novitiate of the Society of Saint Teresa of Jesus in 1904, in Tortosa, she made her temporary profession in 1907. She was a religious according to the heart of God: prudent and truthful, calm and gentle in her reactions, having a natural goodness in all her dealing with others, but firm in character. God was her one love, and her love for God kept growing to the point where she would give her life for Him. In 1920 she was assigned to the motherhouse in Barcelona. From there the path to martyrdom began on July 19, 1936, when the community was forced to give up the school and flee. On July 23, because she was a religious, Sr. Mercedes was arrested and shot; she died in the early morning of July 24.

Prayer

O God of infinite goodness,
you endowed the virgin Blessed Maria Mercedes Prat
with the gift of fortitude
and enabled her to complete her offering of herself
to you and to the Church through martyrdom.
Through her intercession grant that
we may always remain firmly rooted in the love of Christ.
We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever.

Maria Pilar of Saint Francis Borgia (born at Tarazona on December 30, 1877), Teresa of the Child Jesus and of Saint John of the Cross (born at Mochales on March 5, 1909), and Maria Angeles of Saint Joseph (born at Getafe on March 6, 1905), Discalced Carmelite nuns of the Monastery of Guadalajara, Spain, were martyred on July 24, 1936, after having given witness to their faith in Christ the King and offered their lives for the Church. The first fruits of the countless martyrs of the Spanish Civil War of 1936-1939, they were beatified by John Paul II on March 29, 1987.

Prayer

All-powerful Lord, strength of the humble,
you sustained in martyrdom
the virgins Blessed Maria Pilar, Teresa and Maria Angeles;
as they willingly shed their blood for Christ the King,
may we, through their intercession
be faithful to you and to your Church until death.
Grant this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever.

Born at Bolsward (The Netherlands) in 1881, Blessed Titus Brandsma joined the Carmelite Order as a young man. Ordained a priest in 1905, he earned a doctorate in philosophy in Rome. He then taught in various schools in Holland and was named professor of philosophy and of the history of mysticism in the Catholic University of Nijmegen, where he also served as Rector Magnificus. He was noted for his constant availability to everyone. He was a professional journalist, and in 1935 he was appointed ecclesiastical advisor to Catholic journalists. Both before and during the Nazi occupation of The Netherlands he fought, faithful to the Gospel, against the spread of Nazi ideology and for the freedom of Catholic education and of the Catholic press. For this he was arrested and sent to a succession of prisons and concentration camps where he brought comfort and peace to his fellow prisoners and did good even to his tormentors; in 1942, after much suffering and humiliation, he was killed at Dachau. He was beatified by John Paul II on November 3, 1985.

Prayer

Lord our God,
source and giver of life,
you gave to Blessed Titus
the Spirit of courage to proclaim human dignity
and the freedom of the Church,
even in the throes of degrading persecution and death.
Grant us that same Spirit
so that in the coming of your kingdom of justice and peace
we might never be ashamed of the Gospel,
but be enabled to recognize your loving-kindness
in all the events of our lives.
We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever.

John Soreth was born at Caen in Normandy and entered Carmel as a young man. He took a doctorate of theology in Paris and served as regent of studies and provincial of his province. He was prior general from 1451 until his death at Angers in 1471. He restored observance within the Order and promoted its reform, wrote a famous commentary on the Rule, issued new Constitutions in 1462, and promoted the growth of the nuns and the Third Order.

Prayer

Lord God,
you willed that Blessed John Soreth
should renew religious life
and establish communities for women in the Order of Carmel.
May his prayers and merits help us
to be ever more faithful in following Christ and his Mother.
We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever.

Albert degli Abbati was born at Trapani, Sicily, in the thirteenth century, and entered the Carmelite Order as a youth. He became renowned as a fervent preacher of the Gospel and a worker of miracles. He was Provincial of Sicily in 1296, and died at Messina, probably in 1307, with a reputation for purity and prayer.

Prayer

Lord God,
you made Saint Albert of Trapani
a model of purity and prayer,
and a devoted servant of Our Lady.
May we practice these same virtues
and so be worthy always
to share the banquet of your grace.
Grant this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever.

Edith Stein was born to a Jewish family at Breslau on October 12, 1891. Through her passionate study of philosophy she searched after truth and found it in reading the autobiography of Saint Teresa of Jesus. In 1922 she was baptized a Catholic and in 1933 she entered the Carmel of Cologne, where she took the name Teresa Benedicta of the Cross. She was gassed and cremated at Auschwitz on August 9, 1942, during the Nazi persecution, and died a martyr for the Christian faith after having offered her holocaust for the people of Israel. A woman of singular intelligence and learning, she left behind a body of writing notable for its doctrinal richness and profound spirituality. She was beatified by Pope John Paul II at Cologne on May 1, 1987.

Prayer

Lord, God of our fathers,
you brought Saint Teresa Benedicta
to the fullness of the science of the cross
at the hour of her martyrdom.
Fill us with that same knowledge;
and, through her intercession,
allow us always to seek after you, the supreme truth,
and to remain faithful until death
to the covenant of love ratified in the blood of your Son
for the salvation of all men and women.
Grant this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever.

Maria Sagrario was born at Lillo (Toledo) on 8th January 1881. A pharmacist by trade, she was one of the first women in Spain to be admitted to this qualification. In 1915 she entered the Carmel of St. Anne and St. Joseph in Madrid. Through her spirit of prayer and her love for the Eucharist she was a perfect embodiment of the contemplative and ecclesial ideal of the Teresian Carmel. She was Prioress of her community when she was martyred on 15th August 1936. It was a grace she longed for and accepted in perfection of faith and ardent love for Christ.

Prayer

O God,
who by a spirit of prayer and devotion to the Eucharist
prepared Blessed Maria Sagrario to suffer martyrdom,
grant that we, through her example,
may freely spend our lives for you
by faithfully and constantly fulfilling your will.
We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever.

Fr. Jean-Baptiste Duverneuil (b. 1737 at Limoges), in religion Fr. Leonard, Fr. Michel-Louis Brulard (b. 1758 at Chartres), and Fr. Jacques Gagnot (b. 1753 at Frolois), in religion Fr. Hubert of Saint Claude, were among a group of 64 Martyrs beatified 1st October 1995, victims of the French Revolution who came from 14 French dioceses and from various religious Orders. In their loyalty to God, the Church and the Pope, they refused to take the oath of the Civil Constitution for the Clergy imposed by the Constituent Assembly of the Revolution. As a result they were imprisoned, massed like animals, on a slave-trader in Rochefort Bay, awaiting in vain to be deported into slavery. During 1794, the first two Carmelites died on board ship: Fr. John-Baptist on 1st July, and Fr. Michael-Aloysius on 25th July, both being buried on the island of Aix. After plague broke out on the ship, those remaining disembarked on the island of Madame, where Fr. James died and was buried on 10th September. Noted for their loving ministry to their fellow prisoners and their patience in accepting every type of outrage, privation and cruelty, not to mention the vicissitudes of weather, hunger and sickness, our three Discalced Carmelite priest martyrs and their companions in martyrdom gave unsurpassed Christian witness to their faith and love.

Prayer

Lord God,
to the martyrs Blessed John-Baptist, Michael Aloysius,
James, and their companions,
you gave the grace to remain faithful and to pardon
while suffering dismaying hardship.
Through their intercession grant also to us,
to be always willing to remain faithful to your Church
and to be reconciled with one another.
We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever.

Blessed Mary of Jesus Crucified was born of the Baouardy family, Catholics of the Greek Melchite Rite, at Abellin in Galilee in 1846. In 1867 she entered the Discalced Carmelites at Pau in France and was sent with the founding group to the Carmel of Mangalore in India where, in 1870, she made her profession. She returned to France in 1872. In 1875 she went to the Holy Land where she built a monastery in Bethlehem and began planning for another at Nazareth. Noted for her supernatural gifts, especially for humility, for her devotion to the Holy Spirit, and her great love for the Church and the Pope, she died at Bethlehem in 1878.

Prayer

God of mercy and all consolation,
you raised Blessed Mary,
the humble daughter of the Holy Land,
to contemplation of the mysteries of your Son
and made her a witness to the love and joy of the Holy Spirit.
Grant us, through her intercession,
so to share in the sufferings of Christ
that we may rejoice in the revelation of your glory.
We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever.

?The chief among Teresa's virtues was the love of God, which our Lord Jesus Christ increased by means of many visions and revelations. He made her his Spouse on one occasion. At other times she saw an angel with a flaming dart piercing her heart. Through these heavenly gifts the flame of divine love in her heart became so strong that, inspired by God, she made the extremely difficult vow of always doing what seemed to her most perfect and most conducive to God?s glory?

Prayer

Almighty God,
you filled the heart of Saint Teresa of Avila, our Mother,
with the fire of your love
and gave her strength to undertake difficult tasks
for the honor of your name.
Through her prayers
may the power of your love fill our hearts also
and stir us to ever more generous efforts in your service.
We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever.

Teresa Margaret belonged to the noble family of Redi, and was born in the Tuscan city of Arezzo in 1747. She entered the Discalced Carmelite monastery at Florence on September 1, 1764. She was granted a special grace of contemplative insight based on Saint John?s phrase God is love, through which she felt called to a hidden life of love and self-sacrifice. She progressed rapidly, fulfilling her vocation through heroic charity toward others. She died in Florence in 1770, aged twenty-three.

Prayer

Father,
you enabled Saint Teresa Margaret Redi
to draw untold resources of humility and charity
from the fountainhead, our Savior.
Through her prayers
may we never be separated from the love of Christ.
Grant this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever.

Born in 1560 at Tartanedo (Spain) she took the Discalced Carmelite habit at Toledo in 1577 and made her profession the following year. She spent the rest of her life serving God in that Carmel, except for a brief period in 1585 when she helped with a foundation at Cuerva. She died at Toledo on September 13, 1640. Saint Teresa of Jesus thought extremely highly of her. She was a great contemplative, intensely devoted to our Lord, and often drawing inspiration from the liturgy.

Prayer

Lord,
you enabled Blessed Mary of Jesus
to contemplate the mysteries of your Son
and become a living image of his love.
Give us through her prayers
the burning faith to seek Jesus in all things
and the love to prove by our actions
the presence within us of him
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever.

Albert Avogadro was born about the middle of the twelfth century in Castel Gualteri in Italy. He became a Canon Regular of the Holy Cross at Mortara and was elected their prior in 1180. Named Bishop of Bobbio in 1184, and of Vercelli in 1185, he was made Patriarch of Jerusalem in 1205. There, in word and example, he was the model of a good pastor and peace-maker. While he was Patriarch (1206-1214) he formed the hermit brothers of Mount Carmel into a collegium and wrote a Rule for them. He was murdered at Acre on September 14, 1214 by the Master of the Hospital of the Holy Spirit, whom he had rebuked and deposed for immorality.

Prayer

Lord God,
through Saint Albert of Jerusalem
you have given us a Rule of life according to your Gospel,
to help us attain perfect love.
Through his prayers may we always live
in allegiance to Jesus Christ,
and serve faithfully until death
him who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever.

Theresa Martin was born at Alencon in 1873. At the age of fifteen she entered the Carmel at Lisieux. She practiced heroic humility, evangelical simplicity and trust in God, and taught the novices these virtues by word and example. She offered her life for the salvation of souls and the growth of the Church. She died September 30, 1897.

Prayer

God our Father,
you have promised your kingdom
to those who are willing to become like little children.
Help us to follow the way of Saint Th?r?se with confidence
so that by her prayers
we may come to know your eternal glory.
Grant this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever.

Teresa was born at Avila in Spain in 1515. She entered the Carmelites and made great progress in the way of perfection and was granted mystical revelations. Wishing to share in the spiritual renewal of the Church of her time, she began to live her religious life more ardently and soon attracted many companions, to whom she was like a mother. She also helped in the reform of the friars, and in this had to endure great trials. She wrote books which are renowned for their depth of doctrine and which showed her own spiritual experiences. She died at Alba in 1582.

Prayer

Father,
by your Spirit you raised up
our Mother Saint Teresa of Jesus
to show your Church the way to perfection.
May her inspired teaching
awaken in us a longing for true holiness.
Grant this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever.

Josepha Naval Girb?s was born at Algemes in the Archdiocese of Valencia, Spain, on December 11, 1820. As a very young woman she consecrated herself to the Lord by a perpetual vow of chastity. Josepha?s life was simple. She stood out for her ardent love, and she made progress along the way of prayer and evangelical perfection, while dedicating herself generously to apostolic works in her parish community. In her own home she opened a school where she taught needlework, prayer, and the evangelical virtues. She formed many young girls and women and shared with them her wisdom and spiritual understanding. She was a member of the Third Order Secular of Our Lady of Mount Carmel and Saint Teresa of Jesus, and had a special love for the Virgin Mother of God. Her holy death took place on February 24, 1893. She is buried in her parish church of Saint James in her native city.

Prayer

O God,
through the new leaven of the Gospel,
you call men and women
and empower them to serve you faithfully in secular life.
Grant that they may fervently imitate
the example of Blessed Josepha,
and, through her intercession,
work tirelessly as true Christians to build up your kingdom
by fulfilling their duties in the world.
We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever.

Born in Aytona, Lerida, on December 29, 1811, Blessed Francis Palau y Quer entered the Order in 1832 and was ordained priest in 1836. Civil turmoil forced him to live in exile and outside his community. On his return to Spain in 1851, he founded his ?School of Virtue??which was a model of catechetical teaching?at Barcelona. The school was suppressed and he was unjustly exiled to Ibiza (1854-1860) where he lived at El Vedr? in solitude and experienced mystically the vicissitudes of the Church. While in the Balearic Islands he founded the Congregations of Carmelite Brothers and Carmelite Sisters (1860-1861). He preached popular missions and spread love for Our Lady wherever he went. He died at Tarragona on March 20, 1872, and was beatified by Pope John Paul II on April 24, 1980.

Prayer

O God,
through your Spirit you filled Blessed Francis, your priest,
with singular gifts of prayer and apostolic charity;
through his intercession grant that Christ?s beloved Church,
refulgent with the beauty of the Virgin Mother Mary,
may be an ever more effective universal sacrament of salvation.
We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever.

Elizabeth Catez of the Trinity was born in 1880 in the diocese of Bourges. In 1901 she entered the Discalced Carmelite monastery of Dijon. There she made her profession of vows in 1903 and from there she was called ?to light, to love and to life? by the Divine Spouse in 1906. A faithful adorer in spirit and in truth, her life was a ?praise of glory? of the Most Blessed Trinity, present in her soul and loved amidst interior darkness and excruciating illness. In the mystery of divine inhabitation she found her ?heaven on earth,? her special charism and her mission for the church.

Prayer

O God of bountiful mercy,
you revealed to Blessed Elizabeth of the Trinity
the mystery of your secret presence
in the hearts of those who love you,
and you chose her to adore you in spirit and in truth.
Through her intercession
may we also abide in the love of Christ,
that we may merit to be transformed
into temples of your life-giving Spirit
to the praise of your glory.
We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever.

The whole family of Carmel in the homeland, with Mary its Mother at its head, is the reason for our joy and praise to the Father on this day. We recall our brothers and sisters who once dedicated their lives to continual prayer on earth and now share in the worship of heaven. We unite ourselves spiritually to their glory, all the while journeying along the paths they traveled with courage, as they lived in obedience to Christ and followed in the footsteps of Our Lady.

Prayer

Lord,
may the patronage of the Blessed Virgin Mary, our Mother,
and the prayers of all the saints of Carmel
help us to walk steadfastly in their footsteps,
and by our prayers and good works
ever further the cause of your Church.
We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever.

Just as the love of Christ and the service of the Blessed Virgin Mary have brought us together in a single family, fraternal charity unites those of us still striving to lead a life of allegiance to Jesus Christ in this world, and those already awaiting the vision of God in purgatory. Today the whole Order commends our departed brothers and sisters to God?s mercy through the intercession of Our Lady, sure sign of hope and consolation, and begs for their admission to the courts of heaven.

Prayer

Lord, you are the glory of those who serve you.
Look lovingly on our departed brothers and sisters,
united in following Christ and his Mother
by the waters of baptism and the bonds of Carmel.
In your mercy
grant them everlasting sight of you,
their Creator and Redeemer.
We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever.

Raphael Kalinowski was born to Polish parents in the city of Vilnius in 1835. Following military service, he was condemned in 1864 to ten years of forced labor in Siberia. In 1877 he became a Carmelite and was ordained a priest in 1882. He contributed greatly to the restoration of the Discalced Carmelites in Poland. His life was distinguished by zeal for Church unity and by his unflagging devotion to his ministry as confessor and spiritual director. He died in Wadowice in 1907.

Prayer

Lord God, you made your priest Saint Raphael
strong in adversity and filled him with
a great love in promoting Church unity.
Through his prayers, make us strong in faith
and in love for one another,
that we too may generously work together
for the unity of all believers in Christ. We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever.

Denis of the Nativity, a priest, called in the world Pierre Berthelot, was born in Honfleur in France in 1600. He was a cartographer and naval commander for the kings of Portugal and France before he joined the Discalced Carmelites in Goa in 1635. It was also at Goa that the Portuguese lay brother, Thomas Rodriguez da Cunha, born in 1598, had made his profession in 1615, taking the name Redemptus of the Cross. They were sent to the island of Sumatra, where, in the town of Achen, they received the martyr?s crown on November 29, 1638.

Prayer

Father,
we celebrate the memory of Blesseds Denis and Redemptus
who died for their faithful witnessing to Christ.
Give us the strength to follow their example,
loyal and faithful to the end.
We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever.

Maria Maravillas was born at Madrid in 1891. She entered the El Escorial Carmel, Madrid on 12th October 1919. In 1924 she was inspired to found a Carmel at Cerro de los Angeles, alongside the monument to the Sacred Heart of Jesus. From this foundation followed nine others in Spain and one in India. She always gave first place to prayer and self-sacrifice. She had a true, passionate zeal for the glory of God and the salvation of souls. Even while living a life of poverty in the cloister she helped those who were in need, initiating apostolic, social and charitable works. In a particular way she helped those of her own order, priests, and other religious congregations. She died in the monastery of La Aldehuela, Madrid, on 11th December 1974. She was canonized on 4th May 2003 in Madrid.

Prayer

Lord God,
who drew Saint Maria Maravillas of Jesus
into the secrets of the heart of your Son,
grant through her intercession and example,
that we may work together for the salvation of souls,
experiencing the delights of your love.
We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever.

John was born at Fontiveros in Spain about 1542. He entered the Carmelites and with the permission of his superiors began to live a stricter life. Afterwards he was persuaded by Saint Teresa to begin, together with some others, the Discalced reform within the Order; this cost him much hard work and many trials. He died in Ubeda in 1591, outstanding in holiness and wisdom, to which his many spiritual writings give eloquent witness.

Prayer

Lord,
you endowed our Father Saint John of the Cross
with a spirit of self-denial and a love of the cross.
By following his example
may we come to the eternal vision of your glory.
We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever.

Born in Turin, Italy, in 1661, she died, after spending her whole life there, in 1717. In 1675 she entered the Discalced Carmelite Convent of St. Christina, and several times filled the offices of Prioress and Novice Mistress. She underwent continual spiritual trials, but was constant in her ardent love of God. She was outstandingly faithful to prayer and particularly devoted to St. Joseph, in whose honor a convent was founded through her good offices at Moncalieri.

Prayer

Lord,
you have told us that you live forever
in the hearts of the chaste.
By the prayers of the virgin Blessed Mary of the Angels
help us to live by your grace
and to become temples of your Spirit.
Grant this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever.