Carmelite Nun (d. 1626)
+ Ana Garcia was born into a peasant family in Almendral, Spain. Her parents died when she was only ten and she was raised by her elder brothers. She worked as a shepherdess until she was twenty years old.
+ On November 7, 1570, she entered the Carmelite convent of St. Joseph in Avila. Two years later, on August 15, 1572, she became the first lay sister to profess vows in the newly reformed community under the direction of Saint Teresa of Avila. In religious life she was known as Ana (Anne) of St. Bartholomew.
+ For several years she was the traveling companion and support of Saint Teresa who found her an indispensable help. It was Anne who left us the account of Saint Teresa’s death on October 4, 1582; Teresa died in Anne’s arms.
+ Anne was eventually sent to help establish new Carmelite communities in Pontoise and Tours, serving as the founding prioress of each community. She later helped establish a new foundation in Antwerp, Belgium.
+ Anne of St. Bartholomew died on June 7, 1626, and was beatified in 1917.
For prayer and reflection
“Silence is precious; by keeping silence and knowing how to listen to God, the soul grows in wisdom and God teaches it what it cannot learn from others.”—Blessed Anne of St. Bartholomew
On this day we also remember the bishop Saint Anthony Maria Gianelli. A dedicated pastor who worked to provide for the sick and poor of his diocese, he founded the Daughters of Our Lady of the Garden to continue this indispensable work. Constantly on the road, traveling from parish to parish, and remembered for hosting two synods to discern the best course for his diocese, Saint Anthony died on June 7, 1846, and was canonized in 1951.
Father, rewarder of the humble, you blessed your servant Anne of Saint Bartholomew with outstanding charity and patience. May her prayers help us, and her example inspire us, to carry our cross and be faithful in loving you, and others for your sake. We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, God, forever and ever.
(from The Discalced Carmelite Proper Offices of Carmelite Saints and Blesseds in the Liturgy of the Hours)
Saint profiles prepared by Brother Silas Henderson, S.D.S.