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The power of Teresa's gaze

I keep discovering ever more historical figures who have loved our St Teresa. The other day a Finnish friend told me about Anastasie (1893-1978), daughter of one of the most prominent statesmen in modern Finnish history, President of Finland Carl Gustav Mannerheim. In my friend's words: Anastasie Mannerheim got her Carmelite vocation while still at boarding school in France. She looked at a painting of St Teresa, Teresa looked back and asked Anastasie to become her spiritual daughter. She was Orthodox because of her Russian mother but was secretly received into the Catholic Church in Stockholm when she was eighteen. Secretly, because of the scandal it caused in the larger Lutheran family of her father. As soon as she was 21 she presented herself to the convent in Golders Green, London (now closed). She was many years there but had to leave eventually because of ill health. The Holy Spirit speaks to every successive generation through the wonderful Teresa.

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