Monday, September 06, 2004

"The Little Way" Catholic Bookstore

The following is a little article that was enclosed with my purchase of books from "The Little Way” Catholic bookstore. The article explains how the store got it’s name:

We have been asked often how we chose the name “The Little Way” for our store. It was named for St. Therese of Lisieux, also known as “The Little Flower.” She devised a prayer-filled approach to life that has helped many. She called her spiritual walk The Little Way. It is deceptively simple, in short it is to seek out the menial job, to welcome unjust criticisms, to befriend those who annoy us, to help those who are ungrateful, and to give to those who only take. For her part, Therese was convinced that these trifles pleased Jesus more than the great deeds of recognized holiness. The beauty of The Little Way is how utterly available it is to everyone. From the child to the adult, from the sophisticated to the simple, from the most powerful to the least influential, all can undertake this ministry of small things. The opportunities to live in this way come to us constantly, while the great fidelities happen only now and then. Almost daily we can give smiling service to nagging co-workers, listen attentively to silly bores, express little kindnesses without making a fuss.

We may think these tiny, trivial activities are hardly worth mentioning. That, of course is precisely their virtue. The are unrecognized conquests over selfishness. We will never receive a medal or even a thank you note for these invisible victories in ordinary life, which is exactly what Therese would encourage us to pursue.

An incident from her autobiography, “The Story of a Soul” show the hiddenness of “The Little Way”. One annoying sister managed to irritate Therese in everything she did. Rather than avoid this person she took her Little Way to heart and treated this sister as if she loved her best of all. Therese succeeded so well in living her Little Way that after her death the sister remarked that she did not know what she had done to win the affections of Therese so completely. I am sure Therese was pleased to know this.

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