Invitation to Advent

The Church spends the four weeks before Christmas neither shopping nor clinking champagne glasses.  She waits for God to come.

St. Therese of the Child Jesus and the Holy Face
St. Therese of the Child Jesus and the Holy Face
St. Therese of Lisieux professed her Carmelite vows on September 8, 1890.  She received her veil on September 24.

As it happened, on October 1, her cousin Jeanne married a young doctor.

The new nun Therese must have received an engraved invitation to the wedding in the mail at the convent. Of course she could not attend, since she had now entered the cloister.

Therese recounts in her autobiography how the coincidence–her profession of vows and her cousin’s wedding–moved her to amuse herself by composing her own wedding invitation. (Of course, no one saw this invitation until St. Therese’s autobiography was published after her death.)


Letter of Invitation to the Wedding of Sister Therese of the Child Jesus and the Holy Face

God Almighty, Creator of Heaven and Earth, Sovereign Ruler of the Universe, and the Most Glorious Virgin Mary, Queen of the Heavenly Court, announce to you the Spiritual Espousals of Their August Son, Jesus, King of kings, and Lord of lords, with little Therese Martin…

Monsieur Louis Martin…and Madame Martin…wish to have you take part in the Marriage of their Daughter Therese…

Being unable to invite you to the Nuptial Blessing which was given on Mount Carmel, September 8, 1890, (the heavenly court alone was admitted), you are nevertheless asked to be present at the Return from the Wedding which will take place Tomorrow, the Day of Eternity, on which day Jesus, Son of God, will come on the Clouds of Heaven in the splendor of His Majesty, to judge the Living and the Dead.

The hour being as yet uncertain, you are invited to hold yourself in readiness and to watch.

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