Today we celebrate the feast of St. Teresa of Avila. Teresa of Avila was a 16th century mystic whose life can still speak to us today. She lived during very turbulent times and this impacted her life greatly.
She was a woman of tremendous strength. She lived as a cloistered Carmelite nun, but was known for her outgoing personality, courage, warmth, and spirit as she worked to reform the Carmelite Order. Teresa was a woman who was focused on God. She devoted much of her life to deep, contemplative prayer. Her book The Interior Castle is a classic that has inspired many to a richer prayer life. She was a woman for others. She founded monasteries, traveled extensively, and wrote prayerfully.
Teresa’s life was not without struggle. She lived in a family with a strict father and permissive mother. At times she was caught in between the two and did not know where to turn. It is her upbringing that shaped her into the woman we celebrate today.
In many ways we struggle with life issues too. What is important is to keep trying to find that interior life of prayer which leads to peaceful balance. May we always follow her example and stay connected to the great source of peace in our lives.
Pat Schifini, OSU