8 Aug 2013

August 9th - St Teresa Benedicta of the Cross (Edith Stein)

"We bow down before the testimony of the life and death of Edith Stein, an outstanding daughter of Israel and at the same time a daughter of the Carmelite Order, Sister Teresa Benedicta of the Cross, a personality who united within her rich life a dramatic synthesis of our century. It was the synthesis of a history full of deep wounds that are still hurting ... and also the synthesis of the full truth about man. All this came together in a single heart that remained restless and unfulfilled until it finally found rest in God."
John Paul II

August 9th is the feast day of St Teresa Benedicta of the Cross more well known by her name Edith Stein. Edith was a German born Jewess who after much searching, converted and became a catholic and eventually entered the Disclaced Carmelite Order.As the the anti-Semitism of the Nazis grew, in 1938 Edith was smuggled across the border into the Carmelite Convent of Echt in Holland. However, as the war escalated and Holland was occupied, the danger for Jews spread to that country. In August 1942, as retaliation against the protests of Dutch bishops to the treatment of Jews, many Jewish Christians were arrested, including Edith and her sister Rosa (who had also converted and was living at the Carmel in Echt). They were transported to the concentration camp at Auschwitz where Edith was gassed and cremated on 9th August 1942.

She was declared a co-patroness of Europe along with Ss Catherine of Siena, Bridget of Swedan and is the patron saint of those who have lost their parents, Jewish converts and martyrs.

The Carmelites of Kilmacud have a short but informative and interesting webpage on Edith HERE.

You can read more about Edith HERE, HERE, HERE and HERE.

An interesting article about Edith Stein, the Apostate Saint

Mass readings for the day are available HERE.

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