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Our Patron Saint

Our Patron Saint is St. Theresa of Lisieux, France. Born on January 2, 1873 in Alencon, France. She was the last of nine children and the youngest of five sisters, all five of whom became nuns. Sometimes called the “Little Flower” because she referred to herself as a little, not particularly important flower in God’s garden. She entered the Carmelite cloistered convent in Lisieux at the age of 15. She died nine years later on September 30 of a lung hemorrhage caused by tuberculosis. She was canonized on May 17, 1925, only 27 years after her death, an unusually short period of time.

In her short lifetime, St. Theresa wrote poetry and her autobiography. She once wrote, “My vocation is love.” Her secret was the belief that trifles make perfection and that perfection is no trifle. Her only regret was the fact she wasn’t a boy. One of her first loves was missionary work which was a duty assigned, at that time, only to priests. Msgr. Keffer, who had travelled to France and even celebrated Mass in the room she was born in, was a missionary on the West Shore in the 1920s. He named his parish after her because of St. Theresa’s love for such work.

1997 marked the 100th anniversary of the death of St. Theresa. In late 1997, while speaking at World Youth Day in Paris, Pope John Paul II told hundreds of thousands of young people that St. Theresa would be made a Doctor of the church. On October 19, 1997, World Mission Sunday, she became the third woman of 33 doctors to be so recognized by the church. 

St. Therese's teachings on how to be holy, how to be a child of God, and to be close to God, she called "her little way of spiritual childhood." She learned that being holy is very simple, it involves trusting God with confidence and doing ordinary things in life with great love. Her "little ways" is about doing little things to please people, bringing a smile to someone's face and heart, reaching out to let people know they are special and accepting disappointments with patience not anger.

We celebrate the Feast of Saint Theresa at Saint Theresa School every year.  We recite a 9 day Novena for her and volunteers decorate the school with hand-made flowers by the students.  It's a special event that we have for our patron saint, Saint Theresa.