July to September
Saint Teresa of Jesus “of Los Andes”
Virgin - Optional Memory
Juanita Fernandez Solar was born at Santiago, Chile, on 13 July 1900. From her adolescence she was devoted to Christ. She entered the monastery of the Discalced Carmelite Nuns at Los Andes on May 7, 1919, where she was given the name of Teresa of Jesus. She died on April 12 of the following year after having made her religious profession. She was canonised on March 21, 1993, by Pope John Paul II and proposed as a model for young people. She is the first Chilean and the first member of the Teresian Carmel in Latin America to be canonised.
Solemn Commemoration of Our Lady of Mount Carmel
Mount Carmel is commemorated in Sacred Scripture for its beauty, and it was there that the prophet Efijah defended the purity of Israel’s faith in the living God. Towards the end of the twelfth century A.D. near a spring called after Efijah, a group of hermits established themselves on Mount Cannel and built an oratory in honour of Our Lady, whom they chose as their titular and patroness. They became known as ‘the Brothers of Saint Mary of Mount Carmel’. They regarded the Blessed Virgin Mary as their mother and model first of all in leading the contemplative life, and later in sharing the fruits of their contemplation with others. The Solemn Commemoration of Our Lady of Mount Carmel was first celebrated in the fourteenth century, but gradually adopted throughout the Order as an occasion of thanksgiving for the countless blessings which Our Lady had bestowed on the Carmelite family. The Scapular is a symbol of this and of consecration to her.
Blessed Teresa of Saint Augustine and Companions
Virgins and Martyrs - Memory
As the French Revolution entered its worst days, sixteen Discalced Carmelites from the monastery of the Incarnation in Compiegne offered their lives as a sacrifice to God, making reparation to him and imploring peace for the Church. On June 24th, 1794, they were arrested and thrown into prison. Their happiness and resignation were so evident that those around them were also encouraged to draw strength from God’s love. They were condemned to death for their fidelity to the Church and their religious life and for their devotion to the Sacred Hearts of Jesus and Mary. Singing hymns, and having renewed their vows before the prioress, Teresa of St Augustine, they were put to death in Paris on July 17th, 1794. Pope Saint Pius X beatified them on May 13th, 1906.
Prophet - Feast
The prophet Elijah appears in Scripture as a man of God that lived always in his presence and fought zealously for the worship of the one God. He defended God’s law in a solemn contest on Mount Carmel, and afterwards was given on Mount Horeb an intimate experience of the living God. The hermits, who instituted a form of monastic life in honour of Our Lady on Mount Carmel in the twelfth century, followed monastic tradition in turning to Elijah as their Father and model.
Our Lady, Mother of Divine Grace
‘The Blessed Virgin Mary was eternally predestined, in the context of the incarnation of the divine Word, to be the Mother of God. As decreed by divine Providence, she served on earth as the loving Mother of the divine Redeemer, his associate, uniquely generous, and the Lord’s humble servant. She conceived, bore, and nourished Christ; presented him to the Father in the Temple; and was united with him in his suffering as he died on the cross. In a completely unparalleled way she cooperated, by her obedience, faith, hope and burning charity, with our Saviour’s work of restoring supernatural life to souls. For this reason she is Mother to us all in the order of grace’ (Lumen Gentium, the Constitution on the Church, 61).
Blessed Maria Pilar, Teresa and Maria Angeles
Virgins and Martyrs - Optional Memory
Maria Pilar of St Francis Borgia (born at Tarazona on December 30, 1877), Teresa of the Child Jesus and of St John of the Cross (born at Mochales on March 5, 1990), and Maria Angeles of St Joseph (born at Getafe on March 6, 1905), Discalced Carmelite nuns of the Monastery of Guadalajara, Spain, were martyred on July 24, 1936. They gave witness to their faith in Christ the King and offered their lives for the Church. The first fruits of the countless martyrs of the Spanish Civil War of 1936-1939, they were beatified by John Paul 11 on March 29, 1987.
Blessed Maria Mercedes Prat
Virgin and Martyr - Optional Memory
Mercedes Prat was born on March 6, 1880, in Barcelona, baptised on the following day, and made her First Holy Communion on June 30, 1890. From her childhood she gave herself completely to God, whom she received every day in Communion. She displayed a great love for her neighbour and tried to foster this kind of love in others. During her years in school, she was known for her goodness and her dedication to school work, excelling especially in painting and needlework, which were areas in which she had a natural talent.
Entering the novitiate of the Society of St Teresa of Jesus in 1904, in Tortosa, she made her temporary profession in 1907. She was a religious ‘according to the heart of God:’ prudent, and truthful, calm and gentle in her reactions, having a natural goodness in all her dealing with others, but firm in character. God was her one love, and her love for God kept growing to the point where she would give her life for Him. In 1920 she was assigned to the motherhouse in Barcelona. From there the path to martyrdom began on July 9, 1936, when the community was forced to give up the school and flee. On July 23, because she was a religious, Sr Mercedes was arrested and shot; she died in the early morning of July 24, 1936.
Blessed Titus Brandsma
Priest and Martyr - Optional Memory
Born in Bolsward (The Netherlands) in 1881, Blessed Titus Brandsma. joined the Carmelite Order as a young man. Ordained a priest in 1905, he earned a doctorate in philosophy in Rome. He then taught in various schools in Holland and was named professor of philosophy and of the history of mysticism in the Catholic University of Nijmegen, where he also served as Rector Magnificus. He was noted for his constant availability to everyone. He was a professional journalist, and in 1935 he was appointed ecclesiastical advisor to Catholic journalists. Both before and during the Nazi occupation of The Netherlands he fought, faithful to the Gospel, against the spread of Nazi ideology and for the freedom of Catholic education and of the Catholic press. For this he was arrested and sent to a succession of prisons and concentration camps where he brought comfort and peace to his fellow prisoners and did good even to his tormentors; in 1942, after much suffering and humiliation, he was killed at Dachau. Pope John Paul II beatified him on November 3, 1985.
Blessed John Soreth
Priest and Martyr - Optional Memory
John Soreth was born at Caen in Normandy and entered Carmel as a young man. He took a doctorate in theology in Paris and served as regent of studies and provincial of his province. He was prior general from 1451 until his death at Angers in 1471. He restored observance within the Order and promoted its reform, wrote a famous commentary on the Rule, issued new Constitutions in 1462, and promoted the growth of the nuns and the Third Order.
Saint Albert of Trapani
Priest - Memory
Albert degli Abbani was born in Trapani in Sicily in the thirteenth century. Having joined the Carmelites and been ordained a priest, he soon became famous for his preaching and miracles. He was provincial in Sicily in 1296, and died in Messina, probably in 1307, with a reputation for purity and prayer.
Saint Teresa Benedicta of the Cross (Edith Stein)
Martyr & Co-Patron of Europe - Memory
Edith Stein was born to a Jewish family at Breslau on October 12, 1891. Through her passionate study of philosophy she searched after the truth and found it in reading the autobiography of Saint Teresa of Jesus. In 1922 she was baptised a Catholic and in 1933 she entered the Carmel of Cologne where she took the name Teresa Benedicta of the Cross. She was gassed and cremated at Auschwitz on August 9, 1942 during the Nazi persecution and died a martyr for the Christian faith after having offered her holocaust for the people of Israel. A women of singular intelligence and learning, she left behind a body of writing notable for its doctrinal richness and profound spirituality. She was beatified by Pope John Paul II at Cologne on May 1, 1987, and canonised in Rome in 1998.
Blessed Maria Sagrario of Saint Aloysius Gonzaga
Virgin and Martyr - Optional Memory
She was born at Lillo (Toledo) on 8th January 1881. A pharmacist by trade, she was one of the first women in Spain to be admitted to this qualification. In 1915 she entered the Carmel of St Anne and St Joseph in Madrid. Through her spirit of prayer and her love for the Eucharist she was a perfect embodiment of the contemplative and ecclesial ideal of the Teresian Carmel. She was Prioress of her community when she was martyred on 15th August 1936. It was a grace she longed for and accepted in perfection of faith and ardent love for Christ.
Blessed John-Baptist, Michael-Aloysius and James
Priests and Martyrs - Optional Memory
Fr Jean-Baptiste Duverneuil is thought to be born in Limoges 1737 or at Saint-Trielx on January 7th, 1759. In religious life he was called Fr. Leonard. Fr Michel Louis Brulard, was born at Chartres on June 11, 1758. His religious name is not known. Fr Jacques Gagnot, known in religious life as Fr. Hubert of St Claude, was born at Frolois on February 9, 1753.
Loyal to God, the Church and the Pope, they refused to take the oath of the civil Constitution for the Clergy imposed by the Constituent Assembly of the French Revolution. Persecuted and condemned, they were imprisoned on a boat in Rochefort Bay, on the Atlantic coast of Charente-Maritime, waiting. to be deported for forced labour in French Guyana or in Africa. This never happened. They were left massed like animals on the slave trader Deux Associes, anchored in a small inlet between the islands of Aix and Madame. During 1794, on this old ship or “Ponton” the first two Carmelite religious died: Fr Jean-Baptiste on July 1 and Fr Michel-Louis on July 25. They were buried on the island of Aix. Towards the end of August a widespread plague of frightening proportions broke out aboard the ship. Those prisoners left alive were disembarked on the island of Madame and housed in tents in conditions that continued to he horrifying. Fr Jacques died there on September 10 and was buried on the island. They were beatified by Pope John Paul II in Rome on October 1, 1995, together with 61 other martyrs who were likewise victims of the French Revolution (1794-1795).
Blessed Mary of Jesus Crucified
Virgin - Optional Memory
Blessed Mary of Jesus Crucified was born of the Baouardy family, Catholics of the Greek Melchite Rite, at Abellin in Galilee in 1846. In 1867 she entered the Discalced Carmelites at Pau in France and was sent with the founding group to the Carmel of Mangalore in India where, in 1870, she made her profession. She returned to France in 1872. In 1875 she went to the Holy Land where she built a monastery in Bethlehem and began planning for another at Nazareth. Noted for her supernatural gifts, especially for humility, for her devotion to the Holy Spirit, and her great love for the Church and the Pope, she died at Bethlehem in 1878.
Saint Teresa of Jesus’ Transverberation
Nuns: Memory - Others: Optional Memory
‘The chief among Teresa’s virtues was the love of God, which our Lord Jesus Christ increased by means of many visions and revelations. He made her his spouse on one occasion. At other times she saw an angel with a flaming dart piercing her heart. Through these heavenly gifts the flame of divine love in her heart became so strong that, inspired by God, she made the extremely difficult vow of always doing what seemed to her most prefect and most conducive to God’s glory’ (Gregory XV in the Bull of Canonisation).
Saint Teresa Margaret Redi of the Sacred Heart
Virgin - Memory
Teresa Margaret was born in Arezzo in Tuscany in 1747 of the noble Redi family, and entered the Discalced Carmelites in Florence on September 1st, 1764. She was given a special contemplative experience concerning the words of Saint John, “God is love.” She felt deeply that her vocation was to live a hidden life of love and self immolation. That vocation was confirmed by her heroic exercise of fraternal charity, but was soon completed: she died in 1770, aged twenty three.
Blessed Mary of Jesus
Virgin - Memory
Born in 1560 at Tartanedo (Spain) she took the Discalced Cannelite habit at Toledo in 1577 and made her profession the following year. She spent the rest of her life serving God in that Carmel, except for a brief period in 1585 when she helped with a foundation at Cuerva. She died at Toledo on September 13th, 1640. St Teresa of Jesus thought extremely highly of her. She was a great contemplative, intensely devoted to our Lord, and often drawing inspiration from the liturgy.
Saint Albert of Jerusalem
Bishop and Lawgiver of Carmel - Feast
Albert Avogadro was born about the middle of the twelfth century in Castel Gualteri in Italy. He became a Canon Regular of the Holy Cross at Mortara and was elected their prior in 1180. Named Bishop of Bobbio in 1184, and of Vercelli in 1185, he was made Patriarch of Jerusalem in 1205. There, in word and example, he was the model of a good pastor and peace maker. While he was Patriarch (1206-1214) he united the hermits of Mount Carmel into one community and wrote a Rule for them. He was murdered at Acre on September 14th, 1214.