Little Sisters of Ste Therese of Imola
The reception at the home of the Martin family has been entrusted to the Little Sisters of St. Therese of the Child Jesus, an apostolic congregation of sisters founded at Imola in Italy.From Imola to Alençon, a beautiful story
How come that your community is now at the Martins’ house?
The Oblate Sisters of St Therese at Rocques in Lisieux were the link between our congregation and France. During the Christmas holidays in 2006, a priest from the Vatican came to our Mother House in Imola to speak to the Superior General about the possibility of our community being available to come to Normandy.
On 2 January 2007 – the day we elected our new Superior General and the anniversary of St Therese’s birth – a letter arrived from the Bishop of Séez, Mgr Jean-Claude Boulanger, asking if sisters could go to the “birth place of St Therese” in Alençon.
It was a very important moment for the congregation. We were holding our general chapter and the whole congregation present in Imola, and together we prayed to understand the will of God for this proposed new mission.
For several years our congregation had taken part in meetings with the Oblate Sisters of St Therese at Rocques and some of our sisters knew some of them well. The Oblate Sisters had been at the Martin family home for many years and thought the time had come for them to leave. They were concerned about the future, and suggested our name to the Bishop.
Why did you accept?
In response to the will of God, which is always informs the decisions of our superiors.
Because our congregation is an Institute attached to the Carmelite Order which is committed to the spiritual life of St Therese.
To respond to the call of the Church – a Church which loves us and wants us to be missionaries in Europe, too.
Because we love Therese and her family. As little sisters of St Therese of the Child Jesus, and as daughters of the Church, we want to be a little sign, in the Martin family home, “of the love of God which embraces the whole world”.
Who are the sisters who run the house?
The sisters who run this house are the little sisters of St Therese of the Child Jesus.
The essential mission of the sisters is to be “a witness and bearer of the merciful love of the Father for the little ones of the Kingdom”. Their spiritual direction is “a heart that makes them humble and small in the arms of God, mindful of their weakness and bold in their trust in the goodness of the Father”.
The community seeks to be a missionary community just as the Martin family were. St Therese, the patron saint of missions, and her parents will show the way for the little sisters.
The Little Sisters of St. Therese of the Child Jesus are present in Italy, Brazil, Kenya, Mexico and Switzerland.
The community at the “home of the Martin family” is formed of three sisters who come from three different countries:
– Sister Ritalba Sutti, Italian.
– Sister Ann Muthuri Kathure (Sister Anastasia) Kenyan.
– Sister Jane Mara Brasil da Silva, Brazilian
The community wants to be a missionary community as the Martin family. St. Therese, patroness of the missions, and his parents will be the guides for small sisters
What are your plans for the house?
We would like:
- To enable pilgrims and tourists to know the full beauty and depth of the Martin family’s spiritual life by visiting the house where the family lived and where St Therese was born.
- To extend a welcome to all and to give our friendship, love, trust and help.
- To be a little “sign” of the merciful love of God to those around us and for all who come here.
- To make the “Martin family home” a place where families today can find faith, hope, strength and joy. A place that helps them in their daily lives with all its challenges. A place where people can meet the Lord and find themselves