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October 15 - St. Teresa of Avila

Fr. Michael MachacekNativity of Our LordOctober 15, 2020

for the readings of today's mass, go to

Ah, Teresa.  La Santa.

One of of my fondest memories of a trip I took in late October, 1996, was when I arrived at the city of Avila, in central Spain.  For Avila is the home of two great saints - St. Teresa, and her much younger friend, St. John of the Cross.

Avila is one of the two places I have visited in my travels in which the the spirit of a saint is palpable throughout the town.   One is Assisi, where the spirit of St. Francis is very much still alive and present. The other is Avila - with St. Teresa.  My travelling companion, Fr. Scott Young, and I, both felt her presence in the two days we spent there.   

The town's devotion to Teresa is massive.  Upon leaving the train station and walking towards the walls of the old town, in front of the main gate entrance we spotted a large statue of Teresa.  The inscription at the bottom of the statue was simple - La Santa - the saint.  We found out rather quickly the townspeople don't call her by her first name, but her title, La Santa.

Mystic, reformer, realist.  There are many descriptive names given to this giant of the 16th century. She has left a vast legacy of writings and prayers that have inspired millions of Catholics over the ages.  A quick search on the internet will give you much to read about her life.

I would like to leave you with a musical setting by the community of Taize, France, to one of her most famous prayers, Nada te turbe.  The video will also give you the English translation of the prayer as well.

La Santa, pray for us.