St. Thérèse of Lisieux is the originator of the Little Way, a method of living one's baptismal vocation in the ordinariness of everyday life. It is not about being perfect, or living in fear of God, but rather, the Little Way is living relationship with God with the trust of a child, whether 8 or 80 years old.
Imperfect as we are, the parish family of Little Flower Catholic Church and School strives to follow the witness of St. Thérèse and her Little Way. Why? Not as something to boast to God about on the day of judgment, but because life is better, more beautiful, and more free when I live this way. It fills one’s life with happiness and, after all, what loving parent doesn’t desire most of all the happiness of their children?
In her great humanity, St. Thérèse knew that life is more beautiful, more dynamic, more free, when I live the relationship with people and things from their foundation––their beginning––which is love, not fear.
This is especially true of our relationship with God and for St. Thérèse there was no doubt that God is merciful love. At the heart of the Little Way is this commitment then to live out the relationship with all of life beginning from this fact of love and mercy.
The Little Way is not about being perfect. In fact, St. Thérèse knew she could never be perfect and never pretended that she could be. The Little Way recognizes that we are like little children before a perfect God. Loved perfectly in our imperfections, weaknesses and sins, but with arms outstretched begging to the One who gives us mercy and help for our journey.
In the Little Way, one strives to always live the relationship with God as a child. It fills one’s life with happiness and, after all, what loving parent doesn’t desire most of all the happiness of their children?
St. Thérèse reflected the Little Way as a commitment to the tasks and people we meet in our everyday lives. She took her assignments in the Carmel of Lisieux as ways of manifesting her love for God and others. Above all, she tried to show a love for all the nuns in the community; most especially the ones who annoyed her or for whom she did not have a natural friendship with.
On the many occasions that she failed she would simply turn to God, as the little child before Him that she was, begging for mercy and grace.
Marie Francoise Thérèse Martin was born to Zelie and Louis Martin on January 2, 1873, and baptized two days later on January 4th. Jan 2nd, 1873
On April 9, 1888, an Thérèse Martin said good-bye to all that was familiar to her to, as she said, live "for ever and ever" in the desert with Jesus and twenty-four enclosed companions.
Thérèse was filled with a great peace when she made her profession on September 8, 1890. She was given relief through reading the words of St. John of the Cross.
Thérèse suffered terribly with tuberculosis, and after a long and painful battle with the disease, entered heaven at the age of 24 on September 30th, 1897
Thérèse was canonized by Pope Pius XI on May 17th, 1925, who would later proclaim her the Universal Patron of the Missions on December 14, 1927.