At 10:22 AM 12/24/00 -0800, you wrote:
>>>Not exactly a lively one but St. Therese of Lisieux struggled long and hard
>>>with her conviction that she had a vocation and finally settled it by
>>>creating a spiritual union with a priest/missionary which enabled her to
>>>feel that through prayer she cooperated with his priesthood.
> To which "Br. Alexis Bugnolo" <[log in to unmask]> responded:
>>What source or evidence to you have for this psycho-spritual analysis of
>>St. Therese of Liesieux?
>Although I am by no means qualified to speak to the psycho-spiritual
>analysis of the above, St. Therese did write:
><http://www.tradere.org/biblio/therese/histam/htframe.htm> (from chapter 9
>Je sens en moi la vocation de Prêtre, avec quel amour,
>ô Jésus, je te porterais dans mes mains lorsque, à ma
>voix, tu descendrais du Ciel... Avec quel amour je te
>donnerais aux âmes !... Mais hélas ! tout en désirant
>d'être Prêtre, j'admire et j'envie l'humilité de St François
>d'Assise et je me sens la vocation de l'imiter en refusant
>la sublime dignité du Sacerdoce.
>the first sentence of which the ICS translation of John Clarke renders, "I
>feel in me the _vocation of_ the PRIEST." (italics for larger script,
>capitals for capitals in the MS).
And what would make one think that St. Therese of Lisieux meant this in the
litteral rather than metaphoric sense, refering rather to having the love a
priest ought to have for Jesus in the Sacrament of the Eucharist, rather
than receiving the Sacrament of Orders herself?
>On the other side is a letter quoted by Hans Urs von Balthasar in his
>excellent 1953 study _Therese of Lisieux_, in which she wrote, "Our
>mission, as Carmelites, is to form those Gospel labourers, they will save
>millions of souls whose mothers we shall be ... What have priests that we
>need envy!" (p. 135, citing Sheed's translation of T's letters, which I
>don't have at hand right now).
I have read this work of von Balthasar. He is one of the chief proponents
of a movement in Roman Catholic Theology called "The New Theology", cf. a
critique of this movement by Rev. Reginald Garrigou-Lagrange, OP, ""La
nouvelle theologie ou va-t-elle?", Angelicum, 1946. Von Balthasar followed
Maurice Blondel and Henri de Lubac in altering the classical system of
Catholic Theology by reinterpreting Christian life insuch a way as to leave
no place for the theology of supernatural grace and thus the elevation of
the human person to a supernatural life. It was to this end that von
Balthasar wrote the book you refer to; and in it he attemps to portray the
Saint as a superscrupulous nun whose sanctity consisted merely in
recognizing her human frailty, but whose virtue was ordinary natural
virtues. I know of no scholar of Therese who considers the conclusions of
the book to be of value for historical research.
Sincerely in Christ,
Br. Alexis Bugnolo