On Saturday, 10 July, the parish of the Most Holy Redeemer in Madrid made a pilgrimage to the birthplace of St. Teresa in Avila to celebrate together the anniversaries of the doctorates of the Saint and St. Alphonsus Mª de Liguori. Three religious, the prior of the Carmelite community, David Jiménez O.C.D., and two Redemptorists, José Miguel de Haro and Marek Raczkiewicz gave an overview of St. Teresa, St. Alphonsus and St. Joseph, related to the ecclesial celebration.
The great influence of St. Teresa on St. Alphonsus as one of his inspirational sources was especially highlighted. He considered her as his “second mother” and called her “my Saint Teresa”. He dedicated his first published work to her: “Considerazioni sopra le virtú e pregi di S. Teresa di Gesù” (Naples, 1743). It is said that as many as 1,300 quotations appear in the writings of St. Alphonsus, taken from Teresa’s texts. In St. Alphonsus’ Booklet of Conscience, we find a consecration to the saint of Avila with a series of promises. It was also emphasised in his adherence to Teresa that Alphonsus was not merely a disseminator but an “original interpreter of the Saint”.
The Eucharist was then celebrated, presided over by the prior of the Carmelite community, and the first part of the day ended with a common meal in the monastery.
In the afternoon, the pilgrims walked through the centre of the city, taking some photos at the front of the sculptures of Teresa and John of the Cross, passing through the parish where St. Teresa was baptised to reach the Monastery of St. Joseph, the first foundation of St. Teresa. A short prayer in the small chapel and a visit to the Teresian reliquary ended the stay in Avila.
All the pilgrims appreciated this meaningful celebration and recognition of these two great saints who remind us of the essentials of the Christian life.
Equipo de Comunicación SR
Photos by Fernando González Cuezva C.Ss.R.