I’ve had my four favorite T sisters in Heaven (St. Teresa of Avila, St. Thérѐse of Lisieux, St. Teresa Benedicta of the Cross, and Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta) as well as my dear sister in Christ, Michele Morris, who entered a cloistered Carmelite monastery in California this past August have been on my mind today. (If you want to know more about the four Teresas, I highly recommend reading two books I read and enjoyed tremendously: My Sisters the Saints and/or The Four Teresas.)
Today, October 15, is the Feast day of St. Teresa of Avila. Several months ago, my friend Michele was excited about this particular date, because the Reverend Mother of the Carmelite Sisters by the Sea, Mother Teresita, asked her to help plan a celebration for the feast day of this Doctor of the Church who reformed the Carmelite order. Michele, who has often been the life of any get-together, was quite amused that her first long-term assignment as a postulant would be to help plan a party.
Because it’s the Feast Day of one of my favorite saints and a really special day for Carmelites around the world, I had Michele on my mind and prayers even more than usual, and I wanted to make a special effort to go to Mass. I was thinking I’d go to noon Mass somewhere, but God led Kevin and me to a “Divine Appointment” that took us the entire morning (which I will write about in another post), so we weren’t able to get there.
This afternoon, I was smitten to discover I had time to get to Mass at the church where I’d first met Michele and where we’d most often gone to pray together. I saw many of the regulars Kevin and I have prayed with at daily Mass when we’ve gone St. Benedict’s at 5:30pm Tuesday-Fridays over the past three years. It felt good to be surrounded by a number of familiar prayer warriors and the faith community who welcomed Michele as one of their own. St. Benedict’s was also the last place in Richmond where Michele performed Teresita, an original play she wrote based on the life of St. Teresa of Avila, a little over one year after the debut of her show at St. Benedict's School on July 17 (the Feast Day of Our Lady of Mount Carmel).
I’ve been missing Michele, lately. Things are the same without her smiling face, amusing anecdotes, cheerful presence, spontaneous visits, and frequent texts, so it was nice to have a day that made me feel more connected to her in a number of ways. I know that she’s out West throwing a great party for the Sisters by the Sea.
Lord, thank You for the gift of faith-filled, prayerful women who are focused on doing Your will in all areas of their lives. Amen.