ST THÉRÈSE OF LISIEUX (1873–1897)
Lord, your child knows that you are the Light. She asks you to forgive her unbelieving brethren; she will willingly eat the bread of sorrow for as long as you wish; she will, for love of you, sit at this table where the wretched sinners eat their bitter food and will not leave it until you give her the sign. But may she not say in her own name and in the name of her guilty brethren: “O God, be merciful to us sinners…. May all those who have never been illuminated by the light of faith see it shine at last…!
The voice of unbelievers came to mock me out of the darkness: “You dream of light, of a fragrant land, you dream that their Creator will be yours for ever and you think you will one day leave behind this fog in which you languish. Hope on! Hope on! And look forward to death! But it will give you, not what you hope for, but a still darker night, the night of annihilation…!”
I have never before felt so strongly how gentle and merciful God is. He sent me this heavy cross just at the time when I was strong.