Relics of ITI Patroness Saint Therese of Lisieux Received in Heiligenkreuz Abbey

Last Friday, June 3, the relics of St. Therese of Lisieux were solemnly received in the Heiligenkreuz Abbey, a Cistercian monastery situated in the Vienna Woods in the vicinity of ITI’s Campus. The ITI community gratefully participated in the evening event honoring the Little Flower and entrusted the ITI to her patronage anew.

The celebration started with the reception of the reliquary in the courtyard of the Abbey, followed by a solemn transfer to the Abbey Church in a procession. It continued in the church with Vespers, beautifully sung by the Cistercian monks, and Holy Mass, celebrated by the Abbott Maximilian Heim OCist.

St. Therese of Lisieux, the youngest Doctor of the Church, plays a special role in the life of the ITI. She is one of the three Patron Saints of the University and is our role model. It is her famous ‘little way’ that we practice by doing little things with humility, entrusting them to God that He might allow them to bear great fruit. The former ITI visiting professor Rev. John Saward in his reflection on St. Therese as a Model for our School said: “The ITI is still a small mustard seed, but I am convinced that from it will grow the great tree of a renewed Christendom.” St. Therese is indeed greatly honored in our community and the ITI community regularly embarks on bus-pilgrimages to France in order to encounter the birthplace and important locations in the life of this great theologian.

‘Dearest Saint Therese of Lisieux, you said that you would spend your time in heaven doing good on earth. Your trust in God was complete. Pray that He may increase our trust in His goodness and mercy as we pray for the spiritual and material wellbeing of the ITI’ (from St. Therese Novena).