Today is the feast of St Theresa of the Child Jesus. I was thinking about that, as I was waiting for Mass to begin. We have a new prime Minister, a vicar’s daughter with a flamboyantly Catholic name. When you think of St Teresa of Avila, the wild visionary, Saint Theresa of Lisieux – the Little Flower with her Little Way – and now Saint Teresa of Kolkata, I hope that Mrs May is guided by her namesakes (well, it is her birthday today – although I am sure that Nanny May can mostly look after herself).
I started thinking about the saints. Some of them – like Saint Theresa of Lisieux – seem impossibly good and hard to emulate. But I take heart from the fact that many of the others were a random bunch: drunks, thieves, liars, libertines, madwomen, soldiers, slaves, noblemen, servants – and taxmen. We think we are flummoxed by the cognitive dissonance arising from the difference between the ideal and the actual. We think we struggle with modernity. So did they.
Soeur Thérèse rose image rights here.
Pope John Paul II rose image rights here