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July 17th: Feast of the Carmelite Martyrs of Compiegne

Ave Maria Meditations

Blessed Teresa of Sf. Augustine and Companions (1794)

Blessed Teresa and fifteen other Carmelite nuns were guillotined during the “Reign of Terror” of the French Revolution. Two years earlier they had made an Act of Consecration by which they offered themselves as a holocaust to bring peace to the Church and the country.

When they were arrested Sister Henriette exclaimed, “Let us rejoice in the joy of the Lord, that we shall die for our Holy Religion.” As each Sister ascended the guillotine, her companions sang the Veni Creator Spiritus. The normally noisy crowd was strangely silent, and a witness remarked, “They looked as if they were going to their wedding.” Within ten days of their death, the Reign of Terror ended.

Veni, Creator Spiritus

1. Veni, creator Spiritus mentes tuorum visita, imple superna gratia, quae tu creasti pectora.